Monday, August 31, 2009

Summer's Bounty Part Deux: Upstate NY


New York is known for many things, most of them ironically being on the very edges of the state: New York City, Niagara Falls, Lake George. But what many people don't realize is how beautiful and lush the very heart of the land is. Filled with huge natural parks and tons of villages with small farms, this is a truly beautiful state.


Best of all, the tomatoes in some friends' garden have escaped the blight that has afflicted the crops this year. And I LOVE tomatoes. These were succulent, fresh and with that refreshing tang of good fruit.


These made amazing bruschetta and were great while sitting outside on a cool late summer's evening.


The soils are rich with the bounty of summer, such as these fresh-picked potatoes and carrots. The carrots came home to NYC with me. The potatoes didn't last long. I love potatoes too.


Local farms also offer great meats, such as these cuts that were quickly grilled over a hot flame.


Those fresh potatoes? They went into a Pommes Ana tart that was filled with earthy, buttery goodness.


Everything was fresh, like these colorful flowers picked only a few minutes before dinner.


Apples, picked that afternoon, went into a Tarte Tatin that, unsurprisingly, was full of buttery goodness too. Hmmm... see a theme here?


And with such a rustic, lovely countryside dinner? What would you drink? I grabbed a bottle of 2007 Foillard Morgon Clos de Py Beaujolais, a deliciously earthy yet fruity wine that smells of the French countryside. Even the cat liked it.


I also revisited a place that had really impressed me the first time I was in the area: Swoon Kitchenbar, in Hudson. Like my first time there, the food was amazing, the wine list imaginative and well-priced, and the welcome warm. I even got some house-made smoked bacon from Chef Jeff. For a rustic bistrot, this was pretty cool!

Sometimes, it's nice to get away for a few days.

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