White Barn Inn

April 25, 2012

Nestled in the quaint New England coastal town of Kennebunkport, White Barn Inn was one of my first stops through southern Maine last week, and one I thoroughly enjoyed. An intimate, classic inn setting, I was welcomed with open arms into the kitchen of Grand Chef, Jonathan Cartwright, to taste his Forbes Five Star menu. Feasting on more than my stomach could take, it was too delicious to leave the plate anything but clean. The various courses included an appetizer of Pan Roast New England Quail Breast and Foie Gras with a Basket of Smoked Leg Confit and Forest Mushroom Risotto. Parmesan Cheese Ice Cream with Crisp Fig Fitter as an intermezzo and Local Salmon Filet in a Parma Ham “Jacket” with Bacon Wrapped Scallop, Spaghetti Squash and Maple Dijon Mustard Sauce for the main course. Although it didn’t stop there, as I had to try Cartwright’s specialty smoked lobster dish and finished off with a multitude of desserts. The entire inn was more than welcoming, and certainly a must-stay for anyone traveling to the Pine Tree State. I hope to return very soon, next time booking an extra day to take advantage of their luxurious spa treatments!

A walk along Kennebunkport's rocky coastline and White Barn Inn

Smoked lobster

An extra dish from the chef

Lounge area

Parmesan Cheese Ice Cream with Crisp Fig Fitter

Inn interior

Pan Roast New England Quail Breast and Foie Gras with a Basket of Smoked Leg Confit and Forest Mushroom Risotto

Local Salmon Filet in a Parma Ham "Jacket"

Bacon wrapped scallop

Salmon

Front Porch at May's Annex

Grand Chef, Jonathan Cartwright's signature smoked lobster dish

Grand Marnier souffle with chocolate sauce

Grand Marnier souffle with chocolate sauce and sorbet

Espresso

Front porch

Maine blueberry sorbet

Breakfast Quiche

Fresh bread

Muffins

Fresh berries

Breakfast meat selection

Morning Mini Quiches

April 10, 2012

Mini quiches are the perfect answer when you have a late afternoon brunch on the weekends, but need something quick and easy to hold you over until 2 or so. Easter morning, my father cooked up these delicious muffin size quiches. Quick and easy to make, he threw in some eggs, cheddar cheese, spinach, asparagus, bacon and ham– a little taste of everything in one bite.

Mini Quiche with cheese bread

Ingredients

Ham

Cafe Lalo

April 2, 2012

Famously known for Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks’ meeting in You’ve Got Mail, the Upper West Side’s Cafe Lalo has always been a favorite of mine, and quite honestly am surprised I’ve waited this long to feature it. Not only do they have great brunch options, but their large selection of cheesecakes and other desserts makes it a great late night stop as well. With it’s Euro-feel, it’s the perfect spot to go on a warm spring day when the floor to ceiling windows are open, and you can people-watch the sidewalks below.

Coffee

Steamed eggs with Bulgarian feta cheese, olives and herbs served with roasted potatoes and a Mediterranean salad

Mediterranean salad

Breads

Purple Potatoes

A Day in D.C.

March 20, 2012

This past weekend I had a wonderful time visiting friends in Washington D.C. Saturday was spent partially at Clyde’s, a pub in Georgetown to cheer on my alma mater, Syracuse, in the NCAA basketball tournament and celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, and the other half was spent enjoying the beautiful sunshine around the neighborhood’s quaint streets. We started off the morning with delicious chive and goat cheese biscuits from Baked and Wired, followed by their best-selling cupcakes, a vanilla cake with fresh strawberries folded in the batter and finished with a swirl of pink buttercream. It’s never too early in the day for one of these! We filled our appetites in the afternoon at Clyde’s with their top recommendations– wings, Bloody Mary’s and a crab tower. Lucky for me, with the early spring temperatures, I was even able to catch a glimpse of the beautiful cherry blossoms around the city’s sites.

Chive and Goat Cheese Biscuit

Georgetown

Chive and Goat Cheese Biscuit

Baked & Wired

Best-selling strawberry cupcake

Baked & Wired

Cupcakes & the Capitol

Cherry blossoms and the Jefferson Memorial

Strawberries

An afternoon snack

Wings from Clyde's

 

Is it Summer Yet?

March 14, 2012

Last night I was strolling around the neighborhood in short sleeves after I thoroughly enjoyed a dinner at the New York Historical Society. The streets were buzzing, the restaurants overflowed onto the sidewalks and the smell in the air was that of a summer evening. Whether it’s here to stay or not, I’m daydreaming of the months to come, especially for those weekend trips out to the Hamptons. Here’s a little taste from Donna D…

Last April the bf, babies, and I headed to the Hamptons for a weekend of rest and relaxation. It was one of our first times experiencing the far East-end of Long Island and it was the perfect escape from the craziness of NYC. I am quite happy that we chose April because it saved us some major money and it wasn’t crowded with all the cool kids that come during the summer. The weather was also perfect despite forecasts of rain. We stayed at the charming Hampton Beach House and spent the weekend playing on the beach, eating good food, and touring the many dog-friendly wineries. Some of the highlights of our trip included breakfast at the Mexican inspired Estia’s Little Kitchen, sampling wine at Paumanok, Duckwalk, and Pindar vineyards, shopping for our picnic lunch at the The Village Cheese Shop, and watching the beautiful spring sunsets on the beach.

Paumanok Vineyards & Pindar Vineyards

Owner, Rosemary, putting together the cheese for our picnic at the The Village Cheese Shop

The Village Cheese Shop

Owner, Rosemary, preparing a sample of cheese at the The Village Cheese Shop

The Village Cheese Shop

Lunch

Duckwalk Vineyards

Paumanok Vineyards' wine & Bread, goat cheese, fig jam, and olive

Blueberry Port at Duckwalk Vineyards

Bread, goat cheese, and fig jam

Pindar Vineyards

Picnic Lunch

The Cook at Estia's Little Kitchen preparing our breakfast

Sophie’s Crab ‘n’ Eggs with avocado on an english muffin at Estia's Little Kitchen

Guacamole, chips and salsa at Estia's Little Kitchen

Morning coffee at Estia's Little Kitchen

Spring sunset on the beach

Sunset

A Meli-Melo Morning

March 11, 2012

This cute little créperie in Greenwich, Connecticut has always been a favorite spot of mine when I’m visiting the area. Enjoying an afternoon there this weekend, I opted for the Sweet Tooth, a crepe with fresh kiwi, strawberries, mint leaf, home-made chocolate sorbet and chocolate sauce. And you can’t leave without trying one of their signature fresh juices to quench your thirst.

Sweet Tooth crepe and fresh pear, kiwi, coconut juice

Dessert for lunch

Crepes and juice

Last weekend, my friend and I took the train an hour up the river to the little town of Cold Spring. It was a bit chilly, but nothing beats the fresh air. After checking out a few different cafes and dining establishments, we opted for the Hudson House River Inn, a historical home built back in 1832, serving as a small hotel since. Having a two course meal full of soups, fruits, eggs and steak, we worked off the calories with a bit of antique shopping around town before catching the train home.

Onion Soup Au Gratin

 

Strawberry Butter

 

Accommodations at the Hudson House

 

Grilled Marinated Flank Steak topped with caramelized onions and maytag bleu cheese, horseradish mashed potatoes and fresh vegetables

 

Poached eggs and thinly sliced filet mignon on english muffin

 

Popovers

 

Onion Soup Au Gratin

 

Fruit with vanilla yogurt, raspberry sauce and granola