This restaurant added safety precaution details

This includes info about cleaning, sanitizing, social distancing, and usage of personal protective equipment. Learn more.

Checkers Bistro

4.5
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1400 Reviews
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$30 and under
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International
It’s a Beautiful Day at Checkers Bistro!

Checkers Bistro opened its doors to Lancaster in 2006, located on the corner of James and Mulberry, offering a beautiful and intimate corner eatery. In 2014, relocating to the slightly larger historic Champion Forge complex, it retained every bit of its charm, comfort and standards of excellence.

Join us for every celebration! We are the perfect spot for every occasion from birthdays and graduations to romantic anniversaries or a reunion of old friends. For a quiet business dinner, we offer intimate banquets to meet in.

Our welcoming and knowledgeable bartenders are proud to serve up interesting, hand-crafted cocktails, beer and wine. Happy Hour from 4-6 includes a small plate menu and specialty drinks. Late Night, the bar is a perfect way to end a beautiful day with a nightcap.

Make “Everyday Delicious” at Checkers Bistro!

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Contactless payment available
Social Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
Personal Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
What 1400 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.4
service
4.6
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
93% of people would recommend it to a friend
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LP
vipLizzyPoo021
Philadelphia
65 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent food and service!

NY
vipNewYorkerinPA
Philadelphia
19 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent experience as usual. So happy to be back in our favorite restaurant. Food, service, cocktails all wonderful. They have great covid controls in place from scanning the menu to separate hands off utensil place setting. We will definitely be back.

S
Steve
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on September 19, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Good drinks, delicious beet salads, and the entrees were perfect.

J
Jesco
1 review
Dined on September 19, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Will definitely be coming back here often! Great service and great cocktails. Menu is eccentric for the area!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on September 17, 2020
Overall5food5service2ambience5

Great food. Snobby server.

D
Disappointing
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2020
Overall2food2service2ambience2

The food was ok, (soggy nachos - yuck!) the waiter wasn't friendly and did the bare minimum. He didn't introduce himself, so I have no idea what his name is. They also tacked on a 20% automatic gratuity which was wholly undeserved for the level of service we received. Normally I leave 20% and up for good service but that should be up to me. We were in town for the weekend and the other two restaurants we had dinner at did not have this fee, they also had better food and service Needless to say, next time we visit, we will not be back here.

SC
SharonC
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on September 5, 2020
Overall2food2service1ambience2

Menu is not the same. This used to be a very nice, upscale restaurant but it has changed for the worse. Our server did not make us feel as if we were her focus. She was not attentive at all.

RM
RickM
1 review
Dined on August 28, 2020
Overall3food4service2ambience5

With the understanding that Covid-19 Limited the quality of service I feel the waitstaff was as courteous as they could be. With an automatic tip they made no effort to even be polite. Great food

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Baltimore
4 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2020
Overall3food4service5ambience3

Service & food were good.

Air conditioning not working & restaurant did not alert in advance of the situation.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on August 22, 2020
Overall2food3service2ambience2

The food was good, but the menu was very limited. The air conditioning had been turned up and it was extremely warm inside. The restaurant did have fans running to help circulate the air. Understaffing was apparent, as it took 15 - to 20 minutes to receive your drink order and the poor staff were all running around trying to accommodate the patrons. Make sure to pay attention to the fine, small print at the bottom of the menu. They add an automatic 20% gratuity to your check. I have no issue with a 20% gratuity, but would prefer the autonomy to add my own tip. This must be a new policy at this establishment, as I have never been charged an automatic 20% gratuity before.

C
C2020
1 review
Dined on August 15, 2020
Overall1food1service3ambience4

There was a shortened list of available entrees because of COVID, we understood that, but, the dinners we wanted were out of stock. Now at 25% capacity, a restaurant should have enough food to feed its patrons. It also took longer than it should have to receive our drinks and silverware. The appetizers we had were all in the same sauce, the calamari tasted like it was fried in old oil, and the drinks were not good at all. We left after appetizers and had to go to another restaurant for dinner. It was not the best experience.

BM
vipBMAC
Philadelphia
7 reviews
Dined on August 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Favorite spot - a Lancaster gem - does not disappoint

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on August 12, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food is delicious and the staff is amazing! Chef Carmelo is a wonderful chef!

BB
BryanB
1 review
Dined on August 8, 2020
Overall3food5service2ambience5

My wife an I love Checkers. This was our first visit post Covid mess. Food was excellent as usual. Our server was completely disengaged and not informative regarding bar questions. Overall, I would rate the service as sub par. What bothered me most, when we received the check, there was a 20% service charge on the bill. We were with another couple. 20% service charge on a party of four? The server never mentioned it and I did not see it anywhere on the menu as I recall. We were so happy to be out to dinner at one of our favorite restaurants this year that we would of given 20% at a minimum. But the server did not warrant it and never mentioned it which really turned me off. I would not recommend Checkers to a friend right now from that experience, but I have historically highly recommended it. I have shared this experience with a lot of our friends who also previously enjoyed Checkers.

MS
MelodyS
1 review
Dined on August 8, 2020
Overall2food2service1ambience5

If you have not been to Checkers before, you may love it. However, the menu has been limited due to the present Circumstances (COVID -19 limitations in PA), so if you have been to Checkers before and know their regular menu, You will be disappointed. We went for my husband’s 50th birthday and were looking for a meal worthy of that type of celebration, not sandwiches and salads. He was planning to order the pepper crusted filet that we know so well. Unfortunately, we left before ordering due to the menu, which upset the server, and he did not handle it in a friendly way. We know he lost a table when seating is already limited, and we felt bad about it, but his attitude with us was not needed. We did leave him a tip for the inconvenience - actually twice, because we did not realize he had already charged a 20% tip on our drinks. Had that been our first time at Checkers, we would not go back due to the server. However, we know It was a weird circumstance. We know Checkers well and we WILL be back when it is not a special occasion, or when the regular classy menu is back.

C
Cindy
Charleston
7 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was excellent, as always.
Social distancing was perfect.
We felt totally comfortable there.
Would definitely return!

SC
vipSamC
Philadelphia
17 reviews
Dined on July 31, 2020
Overall3food4service3ambience2

The food was all very good, and the service was friendly but very slow. The background music they were playing was unbearable elevator type music.

JC
JimC
Charleston
10 reviews
Dined on March 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We can always count on a great dining experience. The food is great and the servers were on the ball.

TH
TessieH
Philadelphia
8 reviews
Dined on March 13, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience4

Part of this may be your fault but the onion soup and an Italian dish were listed at $8 and $12(on your website) and the charge was $9.5 and $14 . A rather significant increase I am not sure about the others but we were recently in Florida and paid a lot less for a lot more. Also the onion soup was a big disappointment - the chesses and croutons were good but the broth lacked taste and was very watery. The bread and appetizers and main courses were very good as was their home made ice cream.

JM
JohnM
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on March 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, great service. Thought a bit expensive for the overall meal

MA
MarkA
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent service and food. All 4 in our party were very pleased!! I had the Apple salad and coffee cured petite filet which was excellent. Others in my party had Caesar salad, diver scallops, & miso salmon. Highly recommend.

HS
HeatherS
1 review
Dined on March 4, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

We went to Checkers Bistro for a light dinner. My daughter had the French Onion soup and I had the Lobster Bisque and the Beet Salad. Everything was delicious! The staff was super friendly and attentive. I would love to go back for an entree. The prices are a little high but I don't mind paying for good food!

j
justaguywholikesfood
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2020
Overall4food3service4ambience4

I had called the restaurant on the Friday BEFORE I wanted a reservation. They were closed. I left my contact information as requested, but I never received a call back. I went online and booked through OpenTable and received a confirmation. One of the questions online was "is it a special occasion". I responded yes to birthday (actually two). When we have been there in the past for anniversaries, etc. , the staff always made mention of the event and usually provided a small dessert to the celebrant. Not this time. Also, the service was much slower than we had experienced in the past, even though we were there on a slow Monday night. We are patient, but the wait between courses was unsettling. Food quality was very good as usual, although my wife's filet was very undercooked for her liking and had to be returned for correction. Also, we had an inexperienced waitress who was pleasant, but somewhat challenged. Not our best experience, but not the worst, either.

EJ
EJenkins
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on March 2, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We sat at the bar for happy hour and it was delightful.

DZ
DanZ
Denver
1 review
Dined on February 28, 2020
Overall3food4service2ambience3

The food was ok and it was not too busy, though the service was slow.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on February 24, 2020
Overall1food3service1ambience4

The server on Monday around 4:15 was so snobby. I came in with my husband to celebrate a record label and we were not greeted kindly. The front desk server did not Acknowledge us at all. He did not welcome us, the table next to us a large group of older gentleman were commenting on how we were not graded properly. It was really upsetting. We decided after about five minutes to leave. Which we were then give an attitude for leaving. Overall experience was not pleasant.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Birmingham
2 reviews
Dined on February 20, 2020
Overall4food4service3ambience4

Prior to making a reservation I made a phone call to the restaurant, inquired about the pizzas on the menu which I’ve had before. The person on the phone told me -yes we have them. I also ask if we could do take out on the pizza’s and the answer was also yes. I checked the website and took a screen shot of the pizza menu to share with my date before hand. Quite disappointed when placing my dine in order and they tell me
- we don’t have pizzas anymore. At which point I explain the website, phone call, etc. main reason why I came here.

OT
vipOpenTableDiner
New York Area
64 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Thank you to the lovely hostess for taking such great care
Of us on valentines weekend despite being over booked. We appreciate your spectacular service, kindness and transparency. Thank you!

M
Mofongo
Atlantic City
3 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

They pay very close attention to detail which made the food outstanding. Checkers is the best fine dining in Lancaster pa

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Valentine’s Day date. Everything was great except they didn’t have steak knives and I ordered a steak.

T
Trish
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is like my 4th time visiting and every visit it gets better and better . Me and my husband and step daughter went on V-Day and it was so nice I was greeted with a rose before being seated and I had wine option to choose the one I preferred and seeing we had my step daughter they made her a kids meal which was awesome cause she was not interested in anything on the menu (she’s 6) but she did love her desert and the next day she wanted to go back . One of my fav places since I’ve been coming to Lancaster

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always accommodating. Really enjoyed our night

m
markr
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was great, reservation time was spot on, and our server was great as well.

2
vip2diners
Philadelphia
90 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband and I went for Valentine’s Day. We had a lovely dinner, the service was excellent. I appreciated that they did not vary from their usual menu. We’ve been there many times and have never been disappointed. We both had the coffee steak, and the steaks were cooked exactly as we like them, medium.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great Valentine’s Day dinner with my husband. Food, service & ambiance perfect.

BP
BrianP
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on February 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was our 1st time dining there and the atmosphere was quite nice. The menu from top to bottom was on point, with so many palat pleasing options to choose from. From the lobster bisque, calamari and seared scallops, to my coffee cured filet, it was prepared to perfection. Prior to leaving our server left us with a rose and a $10 gift card. Very classy place that we're definitely coming back too!!

E
Eric
1 review
Dined on February 13, 2020
Overall1food2service1ambience2

Took over 15 minutes to get a waiter
Very POOR attitude and service.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on February 12, 2020
Overall5food4service4ambience4

Its little bit dark there but cute . Great for dinner/date time.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on February 10, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Food was cooked well and had unique flavors given the surrounding area’s cultural influences. Nothing that absolutely knocked my socks off but I did have fairly high expectations going in. Would definitely recommend eating here. Fun location, good environment, and yummy food. The staff were very friendly and attentive with perfect service timing.

RP
RetiredProDiner
Philadelphia
13 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience4

As usual, the food was excellent and the service was very good. Checkers remains one of our favorite restaurants in the Lancaster area.

FAQs

Checkers Bistro offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (717) 509-1069.

Checkers Bistro is rated 4.5 stars by 1400 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.