Take a short train ride from Grand Central to Wine Country

Plan your wine weekend early this fall, celebrate the bounty of the scenic Hudson Valley.

The Millbrook and Clinton Wineries are just down the road.  Spend the day shopping in nearby Millerton, home to internationally aclaimed Harney & Sons Fine Teas, great antique shops and excellent dinning.  Just across the street from the charming tea store is Gilmore Glassworks, exquisite fine art glass scultpure and original stemware.

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Every Saturday many nearby town host Farmer’s Markets, or if you like pick your own.  McEnroe Organic Farm provides first-hand know-how about organic farming and composting. Tour the expansive 700 acre working farm, then sample McEnroe’s gourmet delicacies at the full-service market!

You’ve got to enjoy our locally made artisanal cheeses from The Amazing Real Live Food Company (based in nearby Pine Plains – www.amazingreallive.com) from the Victualers at the McEnroe Market. The Chaseholm Farm Creamery is a small cheesemaking operation and the home of the Amazing Real Live Food Co. Chaseholm is a family run dairy farm that manages a 50-head milking herd of registered Holsteins. It is from the beautiful milk of these cows that produces probiotic cheeses and fine, artisanal cheeses (Fresh Herbed Farmer’s Cheese, Queso Blancos, Chaseholm Camembert, Moonlight Chaource, and Stella Vallis Tomme.

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The Dutchess County Farm Fresh Link shuttle will stay with you all day, transporting you to the various locations and bringing you back to the Wassaic Station for the return trip home.

Reservations for the Dutchess County Farm Fresh Link shuttle are required in advance by calling 800-445-3131. Reservations must be made at least 48 hours in advance and confirmed before you purchase a train ticket. Shuttle seats are limited, so you must have a reservation.

Once you’ve made your reservation, purchase your rail and shuttle ticket any Metro-North station with a ticket office, at all full-service ticket machines (except Beacon Station). Tickets and shuttle reservations are non-refundable.

Some activities, such as wine tasting, require an additional fee. For more information about these itinerary stops and other agricultural and culinary destinations throughout Dutchess County, please visitdutchesstourism.com/agri-index/.


Gluten-Free Blueberry Scones | Fresh from the Valley’s Table

Gluten-Free Blueberry Scones Recipe with Whole Grains

Hudson Valley Fresh from the Garden

Prepare a 9-inch round cake pan by lining it with a circle of parchment paper. Set aside.

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1 cup brown rice flour, or sorghum flour
1/2 cup millet flour
1/4 cup almond meal
1/4 cup quinoa flakes
1/4 cup rice bran
1/4 cup sugar, or substitute to taste
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 cup organic raw coconut oil
2 large organic free-range eggs, beaten
Up to 1/3 cup almond milk, as needed
2 teaspoons bourbon vanilla extract
3/4 cup fresh blueberries, washed, patted dry


In a large mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients by whisking till blended (brown rice flour through nutmeg).

Add the coconut oil in pieces and whisk or mix to distribute. The flour should get a bit crumbly and sandy.

Add in the eggs and beat. The dough will be thick and stiff.

Add the almond milk a little at a time and beat until you see the dough relax and become smooth and pliable. It should be slightly sticky, but not wet or thin. My dough took the full 1/3 cup liquid (and weather was humid). Use only the amount of almond milk you need to get the dough to stick together. You may need less (or more) than I did.

Add in 1/2 cup of the fresh blueberries and mix briefly.

Scoop the scone dough into the lined cake pan and using oiled or wet hands pat the dough into an even round loaf. Press the remaining blueberries into the top.

So good, serves around eight or four folks depending on your sweet tooth.

Set aside and allow to rest for about fifteen minutes.


Relax at Hilltop House Bed and Breakfast

 The “home-away-from-home” atmosphere at Hilltop House Bed and Breakfast makes for a relaxing weekend escape. Nestled in the foothills of the Berkshires amidst beautiful horse farms, Hilltop House in Amenia is a peaceful and quiet hideaway where you can get in touch with nature’s beauty.

The inn was featured in the fall of 2010 in one of New York magazine’s Five-Point Weekend Escape Plan article on Poughkeepsie, http://nymag.com/travel/weekends/poughkeepsie/

Horse & Hunt Country

Amenia is located in the scenic Hudson Valley, rich in historic tradition as well. The inn is only a short distance from the Harlem Valley Rail Ride, which begins in Millerton. Millerton was named one of the Top Ten “coolest small towns” in America by Frommer’s Budget Travel magazine. The Rail Trail includes 15 miles of hiking and biking trails that weave through Dutchess and Columbia counties. Hilltop House has a variety of mountain bikes available for guests to take advantage of this biking trail or to bike around the town.

Hilltop House offers access to some of the Hudson Valley’s most amazing cultural attractions. Within a short distance are Clermont and Staatsburgh State Historic Sites, the Franklin D. Roosevelt Home and Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic Sites in Hyde Park, and Locust Grove Estate in Poughkeepsie. Art exhibits are featured at Dia: Beacon, and performing arts fill the stage at the Fisher Performing Arts Center at Bard College, designed by Frank Gehry, and the Center for Performing Arts in Rhinebeck. Tour and taste delicious wine at several area vineyards. Cascade Mountain Winery is on a scenic hilltop right in Amenia as well!

There are five guest rooms available at Hilltop House, each quaintly decorated with antique furniture and quilts, providing all the necessary comforts for a serene and charming getaway. The living room, complete with a fire place, is a great place to unwind and enjoy the gourmet cooking by the chef and innkeeper Sandra Johnson.

For more information on the inn and to make a reservation you can visit www.hilltophousebb.com, e-mail info@hilltophousebb.com, or call 917-586-4694.


Bike Trails in the Berkshires | Weekend Getaway

Save the Date

TUESDAY, APRIL 19, 2011, 7:00  PM  – Interlaken Inn
Forum on the Housatonic Covered Bride Bike Trail

A forum will be held to discuss the economic impact of the proposed bicycle trail that would connect nine Litchfield County communities along the Housatonic River.

Discussion and expert commentary by Carl Knoch of the Rails To Trails Conservancy, Bruce Adams (Kent First Selectman) and Ruth Skovron (Northwestern CT Regional Planning Collaborative).

Knoch is the author of  “Trail User Surveys and Economic Impact,” a summary of 14 trail user expenditure surveys in the Northeastern U.S.



The Housatonic Covered Bridge Bike Trail would use the old river roads that parallel the Housatonic, and typically have little traffic. Relative to the rest of the area, the river roads have very few hills, making for a more enjoyable ride. The proposed “HouBike” Trail is approximately 45 miles long, and would run from Ashley Falls, MA to New Milford, CT.

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The Berkshires Trail would connect an several attractions:

  • Bartholomew’s Cobble
  • The Great Falls in Falls Village
  • Dean Ravine and the Covered Bridge in Cornwall
  • Kent Falls State Park
  • The Sloane – Stanley Museum / Connecticut Antique Machinery Association
  • The ledges at the Schaghticoke Indian Reservation
  • Bulls Bridge and its gorge
  • And Sega Meadows in New Milford.



For more inforation about bike trials and special weekend packages contact us: info@hilltophousebb.com.

Thank You.