The mines of North Central West Virginia have historically brought in many European immigrants. While our Italian heritage is widely celebrated, another group is also historically significant: the Germans.
Welcome to the Gasthaus. Sue Lancaster is the owner and chef, and a German immigrant herself. She specializes in serving authentic German food. To her, she's just continuing the family business.
"My mother cooked for American soldiers, my dad worked for American soldiers. We've been in food, she's a caterer, all our lives," Lancaster said.
The Gasthaus shares grounds with the Dunkard Valley Golf Course, making it easy to miss on first glance. The golf course becomes a very popular destination for local golfers during the warm summer days. However, just a few feet away, and you get the sense it's closer to Oktoberfest than it is to summer. Lancaster takes pride in her made-from-scratch comfort food and the restaurant's atmosphere, which brings a feel of her homeland to diners. Her schnitzel is a customer favorite, and it's similar to an American dish.
"You kinda compare that to a boneless pork chop," Lancaster said. "And we put that on a pretzel bun. You know, when [Americans] come to Germany, that's one of their favorites. In this country hamburgers are the favorites. In Germany, schnitzel is the thing."
One customer has lived in Germany, and said the food here is as good as it gets.
"Now what do you think? Wiener Schnitzel! And the spatzle. That just brings back a lot of memories of our tour of Germany," said Miriam Wentzel, one of the diners.
Even the food Lancaster doesn't make from scratch is authentic German cuisine.
"The sausages we have here are from a German factory. They get shipped here," Lancaster said.
Besides schnitzel and sausages, you can get saurkraut, sauerbraten, or any other taste of Bavaria you crave.
The Gasthaus is open Thursday through Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. It is located at 195 Old Mill Road in Blacksville.