Herman and Luther's
Oct 03, 2016 07:54PM
When Montoursville native George Logue finished four years of culinary school at Penn College a few years back, his plan was what most young, talented, ambitious professionals in his position would have: head for a city and start cooking. But his dad, Herman Logue, who worked in heavy highway construction by day and cooked barbecue by night, had a different idea. “My dad and I had always done barbecue together,” says George, “and he said, ‘What if we open a barbecue together?’ So he convinced me to stick around.”
And so Acme Barbecue was born. Unwrapped in 2010 in downtown Williamsport, after a series of teasingly enigmatic billboards had whetted the public’s curiosity, Acme was busy from the get-go, and George continued honing his talents. Joining a Mississippi barbecue team that has competed annually in the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest in Memphis for six years (part of the Memphis in May International Festival), he and his team won first place in the Whole Hog category in 2013 and took the World Grand Championship prize in 2015, competing against over 200 teams from a dozen-odd countries every year.
Back home, Acme’s catering arm took off, too, with a wedding on the schedule almost every weekend in the summer. Wedding venues had taken a turn for the rustic, and Acme was delivering a lot of their catering spreads to barns decked out in white. All the while, George and Herman would drive by an architectural Montoursville icon on PA Route 87—a massive stone barn. Built in the 1700s and last restored in the 1970s, it had fallen into disuse, as the house that accompanied it was rented out to a non-farmer.
“The barn would be a cool place, a great wedding venue,” George told his father. It was, however, not for sale. But George and Herman kept at the owner, and eventually ending up buying three buildings and seven acres of the farm. They started restoration on what was to become Herman & Luther’s (named after Dad and the barn’s most recent owner). And before the building was finished, Herman & Luther’s hosted its first wedding in May 2015.
“We were laying the last piece of flooring just before the wedding,” says George. And they never looked back. Acme catered the weddings in those early months, barbecuing outside, surrounded by fields of corn and hay, as the kitchen was built and restoration details were completed.
Since April of this year, they have hosted at least one wedding every week, along with all manner of small events like parties and company picnics. The Herman & Luther’s kitchen boasts two fulltime cooks George studied with at Penn College (and there’s another Penn College alum working as a fulltime cook in the Acme kitchen).
When the place isn’t booked for weddings, the kitchen, billed as Charlie and Frankie’s Supper Club (inspired by George’s daughters, Charlotte and Frances), hosts themed events at Herman & Luther’s, turning it into a sometimes-restaurant for dinners on Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day, oyster night, and brunch on Mother’s Day.
It is still a family affair. Aunt Amy Carter manages Acme and does all the offsite catering. And George continues to oversee both places on the ground, with Herman still aboard as partner and Dad.