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Posts Tagged ‘Catskills’

Little did we know that in our attempts at a rustic getaway, far away from city dwelling, we would end up in a series of small towns entirely populated by New Yorkers! We’re talking real New Yorkers here, of the snobby New York City variety, the ones who import Chobani yogurt and agave sweetened gelato to the deprived mountain people, the ones who still miss the city even fourteen years after they’ve left. We met a lady from Flushing, Queens, who wanted to reminisce about the old Kaldor and gossip about the new box stores and trendy karaoke bars. Another lady we met works at DE Shaw, wearing the same exact DE Shaw sweatshirt Greg owns from his tenure there. Our innkeepers were outer-borough-ites, having lived all over Queens and Brooklyn. And serendipitously, we also met a Franciscan friar, who lives on 143rd and Broadway, mere blocks away from my last apartment in New York, buddies with a former roommate of mine. Nearly everyone we conversed with was not a local Catskiller, but a New York City transplant.

For not this reason only, our trip to the Catskills far surpassed our expectations. On our first night in town, we stumbled upon a small theatrical society, showing Woman of the Year, an adorably feminist ’40s flick starring Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn. The film started with a number of 1940s newsreels, advertisements for Americans to buy war bonds (ie “pay your taxes to sink the axis!)” and ended up with a radical-for-its-time hyphenated last name. We had incredible wood-fired truffle-oil portabella pizza with a sesame seed crust at a local dive lacking in aesthetics and charm. Our hikes the next day led to beautiful waterfalls and panoramas over the Hudson, some splashy mud puddles and more Manhattanites. We came across a small general store on our drive back to the lodge, with burgers for $2.50 and ice cream flavors like cannoli and red velvet cake.

One final highlight was Peekamoose,  a fancy schmancy “rustic” restaurant supporting local farms with a very highly regarded wine list, acknowledged by the likes of Wine Enthusiast and so forth. Strangely, the prices appear to be distributor prices, which in some cases mean $18 bottles, and in some cases mean $200 bottles. We had a very good 2007 reserva from Chile which put Greg over the edge and forced me into the driver’s seat. We also had a twelve-ingredient (very) chopped salad, onion rings with a red curry aioli, an incredible wood-grilled sirloin (by far the best item on the menu), and a braised spring rabbit with flageoulet bean ragout which led to multiple rounds of “Little Bunny FooFoo” all the way home.

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Greetings, friends, family, and cyber-stalkers! We’re about to head out for a celebratory weekend away in the Catskills for our one-year anniversary, but realized it’s been nearly three weeks since our last post, and we couldn’t leave the world of computers and cell phones and the like without one final update. (Confidential revelation: we may actually have all such devices of modernity available where we’ll be staying in the Catskills, but we have plans to strictly limit our use to Netflix-streamed episodes of Pushing Daisies and no email!)

Before we head out, here’s a shot of our pre-departure lunch — whole wheat penne, grilled leeks, sauteed mushrooms, ricotta. It’s a cinch to make — boil pasta, grill leeks on a Foreman grill or a panini press or an actual grill (which we’re to acquire soon thanks to the tremendous generosity of a certain friend’s parents), saute up some chopped mushrooms, and stir in ricotta.

And in honor of our anniversary, we leave you with this: “Murder, certainly; but divorce, never!!”

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