As I mentioned before, Trevor and I were in New York City recently for the night to check out this year’s Saturday edition of the Grand Tasting of the New York City Wine and Food Festival. I’m a contributor to ShopRite’s Potluck blog and love that they get all their bloggers together this time of year.
It also happened to be my birthday so it was an extra special weekend. We left the girls at home and took the train down to New York and walked to the hotel from the train station. By the time we got to the tasting and meandered through the lines, the event was hopping and I was ready for lunch! For the next several hours, we wandered around the pier, tasting pretty much everything that was offered and checked out a cooking demo.
It seemed like there was quite a bit more hard alcohol at the tasting than there was last year. Trevor tried some of the offerings from a few local distilleries, like Catskill Distilling.
I tried a ton of dry red wines (my absolute favorites) and took pictures of the labels that I liked. I think that’s the easiest way to keep track of what I really enjoyed. The varieties from Inglenook were my top pick. They’re a winery in Rutherford, Calif. and I’m a sucker for good Napa Valley varieties. We did our honeymoon there way back pre-children and someday I’d love to get back.
Other highlights included all the offerings from ShopRite. They cooked up no less than a dozen different things to taste and I gawked at a massive bowl of lobster meat. I could think of a million things to make with it!
Overall, it was a really fun afternoon at the tasting and my birthday finished up with a really delicious margarita and some guacamole at Rosa Mexicano. I was passed out by 9:30 p.m., but that’s being 33, right? A night away from home to eat, rest and relax was a perfect birthday!
Note: ShopRite provided us with two admission tickets to the Grand Tasting and accommodations in New York City, but all opinions are my own.
Also, I want to try out a new feature where I share my old post from one year ago. So here’s the first one!
ONE YEAR AGO: Healthy Living Market Haul
I’m super excited to announce that we’re going back to the New York City Wine and Food Festival this year!
I’m a contributor to ShopRite’s Potluck blog and they are the headlining sponsor for the festival’s Grand Tasting on Saturday, Oct. 17 and Sunday, Oct. 18. Trevor and I will be around the event on Saturday, and I’ll be at ShopRite’s booth at some point so come say hello!
Last year, we had a ton of fun, especially checking out some of the celebrity chefs and their cooking demos. I’m definitely going to be checking out Giada de Laurentiis and Carla Hall (from ABC’s The Chew). I’m especially excited to see Tiffani Thiessen (who has a show on the Cooking Channel). Yes, I’m a complete child of the 90’s and “Saved By the Bell” is totally my jam. I’ve seen every episode (yes, I’m a total nerd) so to get to meet Kelly Kapowski in real life would be surreal.
In addition to a really fun weekend in the city, it’s also my birthday so a celebration is definitely in order!
Fall has officially arrived and we are in the throws of all things autumn. Fall in upstate New York is all about apple picking season. There are so many places near us that sell apples (in addition to our local farmers markets and locally-sourced produce at regular grocery stores). So apples are everywhere. This two month span of freshly-picked apples totally makes up for all those mealy, conventional grocery store apples we’ve all be subjected to. There is absolutely nothing like an apple right off the tree.
We stopped at Saratoga Apple on Sunday morning to get some apples, and, of course, cider donuts. I also picked up some red and purple peppers and a red onion for a veggie pizza I made for lunch. They have a ton of great homegrown produce (check out those Brussel sprouts!).
We got a dozen donuts and the man working making massive batches put a couple hot ones on top so we could eat them super fresh. They were a little crisp on the outside, but soft and moist on the inside with a faint hint of citrus to compliment the cinnamon and sugar coating.
You can pick your own apples at Saratoga Apple, but we just bought from the farm stand instead of picking. We had a busy day and just needed to grab and go.
Read on to see more photos from our visit to Saratoga Apple!
I had really wanted to get to the newest Druthers location at McGregor Links Golf Course in Wilton this summer since it is so close to our house. I love their downtown Saratoga Springs location, but it gets really busy being right on Broadway. I love that they update their menu quite regularly so I’m always trying something new when we eat there. A huge bonus – they are also kid friendly. This is the second new location they opened this year; Druthers has a new spot in Albany as well.
I was really curious to see what the McGregor Links location was like. First, I double checked that it was even open to the public. The golf course, pool and tennis courts are members only so I was surprised that the restaurant was open to anyone. We went on the night before Hadley’s first day of school, and it was just a really fun night out (and a break from doing the dishes!). The weather was quite hot so we sat outside on their patio (which overlooks the 18th green) and watched the golfers. The menu is really similar (if not the same) as the downtown location, and they had the same beers as well. I got a blonde, which was really good for the hot summer day, but I prefer the Druthers winter beers better. I like darker stouts and porters so the holiday brews are more appealing to me.
It really was just a fabulous place to sit outside, enjoy a drink and eat a nice dinner. The place was pretty empty for a Tuesday night so our two kids weren’t disturbing anyone. I definitely played up the “You have to be quiet when people are putting” thing and that got them to settle a little bit too.
So here were the highlights:
Pretzels and Beer Cheese Dip – this appetizer was amazing, and if I’d known it would be this big, I would’ve just ordered a small salad for dinner. We ate about half of these and had the rest wrapped up for leftovers. So delicious. I want some right now.
Great seating selection – They have the awesome patio, and then a deck off the bar inside. There’s also a nice fireplace during the colder months and a ton of tables inside. Just a lot of different options and places to sit.
Other things to know:
Their portions are crazy huge. So if you have two kids, probably only order one dinner and split it. I also didn’t come close to finishing my Grilled Peach and Baby Arugula Salad so I took that home as well. Just a whole lot of food so either come really hungry, be prepared to take things home or order smarter than we did.
Read on to see more pictures from Druthers!
Continuing my summer spotlight of restaurants in our area, I couldn’t resist writing about the Iron Roost. We literally went here the day it opened in April 2012 and have been going ever since. The food is literally some of the best breakfast food in the Saratoga area (but there are a few places we haven’t tried out yet that I want to see soon!) and we usually run into someone we know there.
My huge loves of this place are: kid-friendly atmosphere, the French toast waffles (those were my pregnancy craving with Bryn), home fries, the coffee from Capital City Roasters and the fact that they locally source some of their ingredients. On Sunday, I even ordered something new and LOVED it (check out the Lemon Berry Waffle, but get blueberries instead of strawberries – pictured above). I think this might be my new must-order breakfast.
The only caveat to the Iron Roost is that for all that awesome stuff (great food, locally-sourced ingredients), it gets pricey. We certainly don’t go every week (we used to when we weren’t a family of four), but I would consider ourselves regulars, especially when they’re having their Eggs Benedict, which Trevor loves. Our breakfast on Sunday came to $36.
Note: For these restaurant spotlights, I want you to know that I’m not compensated by any of the places I write about, but I will take your suggestions on places to try in the Capital Region!
Hey everyone! We’re back from a relaxing week at camp in Webb Lake, Maine. It was fun to hang with the kids, eat some good food and just take some time off from everything (literally, there is no internet or cell phone service there).
We spent the majority of our week on the lake, hanging out and just enjoying the time outdoors. The girls had fun playing with their cousins, Gretchen and Mina, kayaking and swimming. We played a lot of dress up and my girly-girls got decked out most nights for dinner. I even got some great pictures of Trevor fishing by the full moon.
Some highlights include: taking a boat tour of the lake with the kiddos, seeing Bryn ride in the tandem kayak (and trying to paddle), Hadley swimming to and from the floating dock and some delicious food (one breakfast recipe is coming tomorrow!)
Check out the photos below!
I mentioned before in my Britt’s Donuts post that we had a really good breakfast out before going to Carolina Beach one morning last week.
I really like to try local places whenever we travel so we decided to try Goody Goody Omelet House right in Wilmington. While searching on Yelp, this place stuck out because it had really consistent reviews. The only negative ones came from the fact that Goody Goody doesn’t accept credit cards, which is typical of some really local breakfast places.
When you first drive in, there is actually a ton of parking. Its located on Market Street, which is a hopping place in Wilmington. When I walked in, I was surprised at how few tables there were. Our party of six (four adults and two kids) had to split up between two tables, which wasn’t a huge deal. You get a good sense that Goody Goody is a fixture of Wilmington – based on its high level of service and how efficient it was. They don’t keep you waiting for your breakfast long and the wait staff was super friendly. They chatted with our kids and several came around to top off your coffee (which was really good). My western omelet was really good. The grilled ham mixed with onions, peppers, tomatoes and cheddar cheese was layered within a thick layer of egg. Trevor got a sausage and cheese omelet and the girls split an order of pancakes and bacon. The pancakes were heavy on the buttermilk (which I always like).
Since we were in the South and we’d never had them before, both Trevor and I got the biscuits (which came with our breakfast). Normally, I opt for the toast, but I was really glad to try the biscuits. They came with a bunch of different jams, and the toasted biscuits slathered in jelly were literally amazing. I could’ve eaten a ton of them.
Highlights: The service, coffee, western omelet and griddled biscuits
Misses: I really do wish they took credit cards and they serve fake syrup (yes, that’s important to us)
All in all, it was a great breakfast out and we’ll definitely be in again!
That wraps up all my travel posts from Wilmington, but we have more travel coming later this summer that I can’t wait to share, including a trip to camp in Maine.