A couple of weeks ago my girlfriend and I, aka The Two Ladies™ went to the Berkshires for a short holiday. This is what we saw.
We stayed at the Red Lion Inn, originally built in 1773 and stuffed to the gills with antiques.
The king of the Red Lion Inn is Simon the Cat. He was sooooo snuggly.
We hiked Monument Mountain, the first quartzite mountain I’ve ever climbed.
We went to Edith Wharton’s fabulous Gilded Age Mansion, The Mount.
Apparently Edith Wharton wrote every day in this bed from 6am-11am and then got up to deal with the rest of her life. YASSSS KWEEN EDITH.
The whole place was stunning. This place setting is to die for.
We ate a lot of delicious food. In fact, I would 100% say that the best New American cuisine in the USA is in the Berkshires and the best New American restaurant in the USA, nay on earth, is Prairie Whale in Great Barrington.
We loved the food so much that we ate there three times in five days.
Of course we got drinks at the Prairie Whale. These were both made with Berkshire Mountain Distillers Gin. On the left was Ethereal Gin Batch 11, Lavender Syrup, Lemon, Peychaud’s, Anise Hyssop garnish. On the right was Greylock Gin, Grapefruit Juice, agave, salt, lime wedge.
The best Bloody Mary ever, made with Berkshire Mountain Distillers Greylock Gin.
Perhaps what struck me the most about Prairie Whale was that nearly everything in the restaurant came from the Prairie Whale farm or other local farmers. I know “Farm to Table” is super trondy right now but these people are doing it right! Seen above is an Anise Hyssop leaf which was grown in the garden right outside the restaurant. It was the garnish in almost every cocktail they offer because Anise Hyssop is what seasonally grows during late springtime in the Berkshires. It smells fabulous too! Like something between Anise, Mint, and Lemon Balm. Perfection.
We drank a lot of Rosé.
And I had a Martini made with Berkshire Mountain Distillers Ethereal Gin Batch 11. Pursed lips gurrrrrrl.
So then of course we went to Berkshire Mountain Distillers, tasted some Gin, smelled some Gin, bought some Gin. Their Ethereal Gins are a limited time series which are reworked every year with different botanicals. They’re all incredible. I bought the Red Label and Pink Label (Batches 9 & 11) and had to force myself not to buy the one in the middle.
They also have a bottle of Rye from 1898.
But the main thing we noticed about the Berkshires is that EVERYTHING is just right. I’ve never seen this much attention to detail, care for the earth, or sense of terroir in any place I’ve ever been to in the USA. (Yes, I’m looking at you Napa Valley!) It’s truly impressive and a totally fabulous place to go on holiday. We are actually planning to back as soon as we possibly can just to eat one more meal at Prairie Whale.
All photos shot by the Two Ladies™ on iPhone 5S & iPhone 6 and edited in VSCO Cam.