Recently I was invited to attend the Saratoga Springs Food Tour, in Saratoga!
From the website:
Our cultural walking tour pairs delicious food with tales of Saratoga Springs history. This 2.5 hour tour is suitable for all age groups and fitness levels. We start with a leisurely stroll through Saratoga's famous farmer’s market before walking to taste some of Broadway's finest treats. Along the way you will learn about the culture, history and architecture of one of New York State's most interesting cities.
Saturday Chris and I drove up to do the tour--it was a beautiful day and we were very excited!
We met at the Saratoga Farmer's Market where Joe, to the tour guide, gave us each a bottle of Saratoga water so we'd stay hydrated on our tour. Very important!
Our first stop on the tour was the So Lively Tapenade booth at the farmer's market.
We sampled the home made chips and the tapenade.
There were two flavors, the original tapenade and roasted red pepper. Both were delicious!
We also got a baggie of chips to enjoy.
AND I bet you didn't know, the first potato chip created was made in Saratoga Springs...
The next stop was the cheese and yogurt booth! Heck yes.
Argyle Cheese Farm had some of the best yogurt I've ever tasted! We got a sample of the maple greek yogurt. It was so rich and creamy. They make their yogurt with only a few ingredients, milk and cultures, so it is all natural and healthy.
In a blind taste test, their yogurt was voted the best greek yogurt against some of the popular New York-made yogurt brands out there. As we know, New York seems to be the capital of greek yogurt.
I would love to get my hands on some of their yogurt again!
We hit a few more vendors at the market, and then we got a little history lesson on the water of Saratoga Springs, which was what made Saratoga famous in the first place.
I had no idea there were actual springs you could drink from scattered all throughout the city.
The water is coming directly from the ground, pretty neat! I sampled a little bit, it was like bubbly sulfur water--haha.
Our next stop on the tour was the Olde Bryan Inn.
We sat on the patio and enjoyed an appetizer, mine was a roasted red pepper bruchetta. It was delicious.
We learned all about the history of the Inn--so fascinating.
This was one of the coolest stores I've been in! The Saratoga Olive Oil Co--where you can sample SO MANY different types of olive oil and different flavors of balsamic.
One of my favorites -- the Thai lemongrass mint balsamic. I also really loved the mango!
This olive oil was a favorite, too.
Next we went to Saratoga Salsa and Spice shop.
We got to sample some realllly good salsas, like the autumn salsa and the cranberry salsa! My favorites.
Chris and a few other brave souls tried some of the more spicier ones--like the Scorpion Salsa...craziness. The scorpion pepper is the world's hottest pepper...
Chris liked it enough to buy a jar...he's crazy. 😉
And last but not least--my favorite portion the tour. Dessert!
Eugene makes the gelato right here and it all looked so amazing! I sampled a few and ended up going with the sea salt and caramel combined with the rocky road.
An awesome end to such a fun (and filling) tour!!! I want to thank Joe for inviting me and Chris to the Saratoga Food Tour ! He was a great tour guide. It was so much fun and we learned a lot. I would highly recommend this tour if you want to explore Saratoga Springs on a nice day, or if you have guests visiting and you want to something fun in the Capital Region. Check out the details on Saratoga Springs Food Tours Website.
I ended up meeting Alicia after the tour! She took us on another mini tour of Congress Park!
It was SUCH a gorgeous day out.
We really enjoyed our time in Saratoga!
Finally, Chris and I had our last day in the city, Sunday! I started the morning off with a walk to Amy’s Bread, by myself! (It was right around the corner from my hotel, so I knew I wouldn’t get lost.) I loved walking so close to the bakery. Walking around alone in the city so invigorating! It is so busy, even on Sunday. There were so many delicious looking baked goods at the bakery. I had to go with scones! I got two for Chris and I to share. Cherry Cream and Banana Walnut.
These scones were amazing! Chris and I split both of them, for breakfast. The cherry cream was my favorite though, it was really sweet, and had dried cherries in it. Yum.
I also slathered on some Trader Joe’s sunflower seed butter onto the banana walnut scone. I love sunflower seed butter! I think it may be my new favorite nut butter!
Oh, and I also got an iced green tea at the bakery, what a surprise. I love green tea!
After our small breakfast, we headed over to H&M for some shopping! Chris and I both left with new fall jackets! Woohoo, we’re stylish now.
For lunch, we were meeting up with one of my other college roommates, Jackie, and her boyfriend! We met them at Virgil’s BBQ in Times Square. This bbq place was another one of Chris’ choices!
We waited at the bar for our friends, and got some drinks! I ordered a Lambic! My favorite. Lambics are really sweet, fruity beers. I think this one was raspberry.
Chris got a beer too.
Our friends arrived soon after, so we went upstairs to eat some barbecue! I ordered a grilled catfish! The entrees came with two sides and cornbread! I got a side of mac & cheese and mashed potatoes. Both were delicious. I love mac & cheese. The catfish was grilled, almost blackened, but pretty tasty! I didn’t have much of a choice at this barbecue joint. 😉 It also came with a crawfish jambalaya sauce, and I put a little bit on the fish, it was really smokey and delicious.
I also ordered a white wine, because I’m classy like that.
Chris got some brisket and ribs, along with a Brooklyn Lager.
After stuffing our faces with barbecue, Chris, Jackie, her boyfriend Brian, and I walked over to Central Park! We checked out the mac store. The store was gigantic. And super crowded.
Central park was nice though. Chris and I walked through the zoo area, and watched the end of a baseball game going on in the park. It was peaceful to walk around the park. Although, I expected it to a bit greener in the summer. I had only seen Central Park in the winter/early spring.
Central Park was a perfect ending to an awesome trip with my awesome guy. Until my next vacation... 😀
Blogging will resume back to my normal schedule this evening...with an important post...about starting half marathon training. Eeek! Here we go!
I should probably preface this guest post with a few things about me. First, when I was in middle school and high school, I wanted to be in Green Day. My friend called me Tre Cool, I called him Billie Joe and we spent hours with our guitars playing Green Day covers in his basement. So I may be a little biased towards American Idiot. Second, I am a really visual and musical person who will listen to a song on repeat for hours. When I watch movies I try to take in the whole experience and can talk for hours about shots composition and editing. So in short, I walked into St. James Theater with huge expectations of a great visual and musical show written by my favorite band of all time. To sum it up, American Idiot on Broadway was probably the most exhilarating entertainment experience I've ever been privy to witness. There are just so many amazing parts that all add up to a moving and thrilling experience. If you're going to see this show I recommend that you first buy the original cast recording. First, it will acclimate you to hearing someone other than Billie Joe singing and second, it will get you used to some of the new arrangements, because the show is not just a simple reproduction of the album. I bought the soundtrack about two months before seeing the show and was instantly hooked on listening to the new interpretations. There is the exciting and fast 'American Idiot', the dark pulsating 'Holiday', and then a few surprises such as an all-girl rendition of 'Letterbomb' (maybe the best song of the musical) and a sad ballad of 'Whathername'. So that's just the music. On a visual level, there's a reason American Idiot won a Tony for set design. There are televisions hung up all across the back of the stage and if you watch them during the show, you are treated to an incredible mixture of media-induced fear, Youtube technology and visuals that enhance the songs/story. Finally, the cast does an amazing job of creating a simple but moving story of disenchanted youth in America. There are moments of real emotion, whether it be a girl sharing a pregnancy, soldiers rolling and ducking under the sound of bombs, and a spectacularly haunting depiction of the September 11th attacks that will simply take your breath away. It's hard to say more than will capture the experience of seeing this musical. It runs until the end of January so I encourage everyone to go check it out. You never have and never will see anything quite like it.
So, after the show, which was only an hour and half with no intermission, we decided to relax back at the hotel for a while, so we could talk about the show. We then later went and walked around Times Square until 1:00AM. What else would do you in the city that never sleeps? I may have ordered a frozen yogurt at a shop in Times Square at midnight, but forgot my camera. I love NY!