Posts Tagged ‘Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast’

Summertime at the Finger Lakes

May 21st, 2012 by Gail

Taughannock Falls, Ithaca, NY. June 2009.

Walk to nearby Taughannock Falls.

There’s nothing like summertime in the Finger Lakes region of New York. Outdoor recreation abounds, restaurants have an abundance of local food, and wine flows in the many wineries. There is plenty to do and there are plenty of fine spots to relax and do nothing.

 

Pristine Lakes 

Our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast and Guest Houses are minutes from Cayuga Lake and a short drive from Seneca Lake. Cool off with a luxurious swim. Explore the shoreline in a kayak. Take a romantic sunset cruise.

 

Outdoor Concerts

There are numerous outdoor concerts every summer around here. Guests of our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast can drive 3 minutes to nearby Taughannock Falls State Park, where the Saturday evening summer concert series starts July 7. Wineries along the Cayuga and Seneca Lakes Wine Trails frequently have live music on the weekends. And free concerts are held Thursday evenings (June through August) at the Bernie Milton Pavilion in Ithaca.

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Wine Tasting with Mom

May 7th, 2012 by Gail

Mother’s Day is the perfect opportunity to show mom how much you care. You could send flowers and chocolates, or you could bring mom to our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast for a weekend of wine tasting.

Cayuga Lake Wine Tasting

Celebrate Mother's Day Weekend with Wine Tasting at Cayuga Lake Wineries.

You know your mother would love to spend a couple of days with you. When was the last time you spent some quality time together? When was the last time you vacationed together? Don’t let any more time pass without making that happen. She’ll be thrilled.

Several Cayuga Lake Wineries are hosting several fun events during Mother’s Day Weekend:

  • Friday Night Concert Series at Americana Vineyards, which is just a couple of miles up the road from our Cayuga Lake Bed and Breakfast. Dee & The Lone Rangers performs from 6-8 p.m.
  • Anniversary Celebration at Swedish Hill Vineyard, May 12 from noon to 5 p.m. This is the winery’s biggest sale of the year, and it’s a great opportunity to stock up on some of your favorite Finger Lakes wines.
  • Copper Oven Restaurant at Cayuga Ridge Estate Winery opens for the season on Saturday, May 12. The wood-fired, white clay ovens make some of the best pizza around. The ingredients are “hyper-local” and uber-good.
  • Sunday Afternoon Concert Series at Americana Vineyards. Can you think of a better way to spend the afternoon on Mother’s Day than sipping wine while listening to the Yardvarks Stop and admiring views of Cayuga Lake? We can’t!

Several Cayuga Lake Wineries are serving Mother’s Day brunches, but we think you won’t want to miss the Mother’s Day breakfast we’ll be preparing at our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast.

Additional information about winery events may be found at the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail.

Make the weekend extra special. Add a Wine Tasting Tour or a Celebration Package to your stay at Halsey House.

 

 

Finger Lakes GrassRoots Festival

April 5th, 2012 by Gail

GrassRoots Festival Music Dance, lodging.

Mac Benford & The Truck.

It may seem like a long way off, but the Finger Lakes GrassRoots Festival of Music and Dance will be here sooner than you think. Between July 19 and 22, 2012, more than sixty performers will take to four stages. They’ll dance, they’ll sing, and they’ll make great music at the Trumansburg Fairgrounds, which is less than a mile from our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast.

The Finger Lakes GrassRoots Festival is not limited to one particular genre. Each year, there is a great variety of music on stage: Gospel, Swing, Bluegrass, Zydeco, Rock, Irish, Cajun, Latin, World Beat, Rock, African, Native American…. It doesn’t really matter what it is, so long as it’s good.

The 2012 line-up has not yet been released. Folks who have attended the festival in the past take it on faith that this year will be as superb as ever. If you’ve never been, looking at previous performers gives a good indication of what this year will bring. The list is too long to reproduce here, but it’s available at Grassroots Festival.

The GrassRoots Festival of Music is a good time, but it also raises money for good causes. It began more than 20 years ago as a humble concert that raised funds for a local AIDS support organization. It was a success. It grew. Today, funds raised by the event are donated to a number of organizations across the community and the world. Recipients include (but are not limited to) The State Theater of Ithaca, the Drop-In Children’s Center, Hospicare, and Doctor’s Without Borders.

2012 GrassRoots Festival, Trumansburg.

Dance!

The Finger Lakes GrassRoots Festival of Music and Dance in Trumansburg has been called one of the top ten music festivals in the country by USA Today. Come see why for yourself.

Our Trumansburg NY Bed and Breakfast is close enough to the festival for guests to walk there. Fuel a day of dancing with a gourmet breakfast here at the inn. Then, after dancing all day, pamper your sore feet with a soak in a large, whirlpool tub. Add a little luxury to the festival.

Additional information about the festival is available at GrassRoots Festival of Music and Dance.

Photos from past GrassRoots Festivals by Jeff Folkins.

Spring on the Seneca Lake Wine Trail

March 22nd, 2012 by Gail

Spring on the Seneca Lake Wine Trail means wine tasting and special events. It’s a wonderful time to take a few days off from routine life and indulge in one of life’s great pleasures, wine. A stay at our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast completes the experience.

A number of special events are on the Seneca Lake Wine Trail calendar this spring. Individual wineries have events such as the ongoing Fish and Brew Fridays at Glenora Wine Cellars, and the Spring Winemaker’s Dinner on April 21 at Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellar. The following events occur at all Seneca Lake Wineries.

Seneca Lake Wine Trail, wine tasting.

This spring, spend a few days wine tasting along the Seneca Lake Wine Trail.

Cruisin the Tropics Weekend. We’ve had some wonderfully warm weather the past few days, with temperatures reaching 80 degrees. This is a perfect introduction to the Seneca Lake Wine Trail’s upcoming Cruisin the Tropics Weekend, March 23-25. While it’s unlikely the unseasonably warm weather will linger through the weekend, we can still enjoy this event, which pairs tropically themed dishes with award-winning Finger Lakes wines. More than 30 wineries around Seneca Lake will participate in this “fun in the tropics” weekend.

Riesling to Visit Passport. The wineries of Seneca Lake invite you to discover their Rieslings using their Riesling to Visit Passport, valid April 1 through July 31, 2012. The Finger Lakes Region of New York produces some of the finest Rieslings in the world, and no two are exactly alike. Use the Riesling to Visit Passport to enjoy a free flight of wines at each of the participating wineries.

Spring Wine and Cheese Weekend. A glass of wine is one of life’s finest pleasures. A glass of wine paired with cheese is cause for jubilation. When well paired, wine and cheese bring out the best in each other. Like a good marriage, they are better together than they are on their own. The Spring Wine and Cheese Weekend of April 27-29 invites participants to visit more than 30 wineries and sample new releases and old favorites, all paired with cheese. Some wineries will even pour samples from the barrel.

Smokin’ Summer Kickoff. Spring transitions into summer with the Smokin’ Summer Kickoff of June 8-10. Seneca Lake Wineries will have the grills going, and they’ll be showing off some delicious combinations of grilled food and wines. Who says barbecues are all about beer?

Most Seneca Lake Wine Trail Events are self-guided; you can visit as many wineries as you like over the course of the event. Special events aside, most wineries are open daily for visitation and wine tasting. The longer you stay at our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast, the more Seneca Lake Wineries you can visit.

Consider getting together a group of wine-loving friends and renting Clarke’s Cottage, our Finger Lakes Vacation Home. Up to 10 people can stay comfortably in Clarke’s Cottage–enough for there to be a different designated driver for each day of the week.

March Events at Cayuga Lake Wineries

March 8th, 2012 by Gail

Special events take place at Cayuga Lake Wineries around the calendar, from summer concerts to winter holiday wine tasting tours. Yet spring, with its unpredictable weather, is a favorite time to visit the wineries along Cayuga Lake. Whether it’s warm or cold, rainy or sunny, Finger Lakes Wineries are warm and inviting.

Finger Lakes Wine Tasting Weekends

Spend some time exploring the wineries of Cayuga Lake.

Halsey House Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast is in Trumansburg, near the southwest shore of Cayuga Lake. Less than five minutes up the road are the first of a dozen wineries that dot the western edge of the lake. On mild spring days, it’s a pleasant bike ride up to American Vineyards or Bellwether Hard Cider. It’s also a very short drive.

Americana Vineyards hosts concerts every Friday evening and Sunday afternoon. Both local and touring musicians are featured, and wine is available by the bottle or the glass. There’s even food served at the winery’s Crystal Lake Café. For a schedule of upcoming events, please see American Vineyards.

Bellwether Hard Cider will host their almost annual Cidermakers Get Together and Potluck Dinner on March 18. This is a great opportunity for cider fans and home cider makers to get together and talk (and taste) cider. Anyone interested is welcome. Additional information available at Bellwether.

Read on for more March events at Cayuga Lakes Wineries.

  • Ladies Day Out at Buttonwood Grove Winery, 12-5 p.m. Live music, chocolate and wine pairings, jewelry, and more. Make it a Girlfriends Getaway at our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast.
  • Cheese at Sheldrake Point Winery. Every Saturday during the month of March, Sheldrake Point Winery is featuring a local, artisan cheese. Meet the cheesemakers and enjoy wine and cheese pairings.
  • Irish Wine? Why not! Raise a glass of green wine to St. Patrick and the Irish at Cobblestone Farm Winery. Enjoy fine wines paired with complimentary Irish stew and other traditional dishes on March 17 and 18.
  • Harken back to the old days and celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with mead from Montezuma Winery. March 17 and 18.
  • Say Cheese & More on March 24 and 25, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. All 16 Cayuga Lake Wineries are joining forces with local, artisan cheese makers. A weekend filled with amazing combinations of wine and cheese….. is there anything better? Discounts are given for people with designated drivers.
  • Cayuga Ridge Estate Winery and Hosmer Winery will have Spring Barrel Tastings on April 14. Winemakers will be present at both wineries, so it is a wonderful opportunity to learn more about winemaking.
  • Enjoy a French Country Dinner at Knapp Vineyards on April 21. The theme is Herbes de Provence. Each course will be paired with two wines from Knapp Vineyards.

Once you find an event or activity you like, book a room at our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast. Enhance your stay with breakfast in your room, or a picnic basket to take on your wine tasting tour. Make it a romantic retreat, a girlfriends getaway, or gather together a group of friends stay in our Finger Lakes Vacation Home, Clarke’s Cottage.

No matter who you travel with, remember this: the longer you stay, the more wineries you can visit.

Best Places to Steal a Kiss

February 7th, 2012 by Gail

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, the romantics among us are considering the best places to steal a kiss by the Finger Lakes. This blog is to help guests of our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast find such spots. Read on for inspiration.

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Steal a kiss as often as you can.

It’s hard to resist kissing the one you love when standing on the overlook at Taughannock Falls. The roaring water tumbles more than 200 feet to the quiet pool below; surrounding cliffs soar another 200 feet above the top of the falls. Hide in the mist and steal a kiss.

If standing in the presence of magnificent art makes your heart beat faster, visit Cornell University’s Johnson Art Museum during your stay at our Finger Lakes B&B. Permanent exhibits range from African sculpture to Tantric Buddhist ritual implements and contemporary prints and photographs. Find a corner by a window on the fifth floor, admire the stunning view of Ithaca and Cayuga Lakes, and steal your kiss.

On a pleasant afternoon, the deck of the Thirsty Owl Wine Company is a sweet spot to steal a kiss. The winery is perched the west side of Cayuga Lake and boasts more than 2,000 feet of lake frontage. Their Tasting Room is open daily until 5:30 p.m. (later on Friday and Saturday); sip a glass of their award winning 2010 Pinot Gris or 2008 Pinot Noir while watching the sunset.

The sofas in the bar at Madeline’s on the Commons seem to invite a quick kiss. Sink into a sofa as you enjoy one of their 24 cognacs, 63 scotches, or 100+ wines. Whether it’s a busy or quiet evening, you’re sure to find a moment to steal a kiss.

A dinner cruise is inherently romantic. Step aboard the M/V Columbia and float on Cayuga Lake as you feast on herbed Balsamic Chicken with Gorgonzola Cream Sauce, Grilled Sirloin Steak with Red Wine and Mushroom Demi Glace, or a rich Vegetarian Lasagna. It sure sounds like a perfect place to steal a kiss. Cruises will recommence in April, but you can plan your spring romantic getaway to the Finger Lakes now.

People stay at the Halsey House for many reasons. Some come to the region for business, some to see family or friends, and some to visit Ithaca College or Cornell University. Quite a few couples stay with us in order to be pampered and have a romantic getaway. It doesn’t really matter why you’re here. If you’re traveling with your sweetie, take a few moments to go someplace special, and steal a kiss.

Our Favorite Finger Lakes Restaurants

January 28th, 2012 by Gail

Letting someone else cook for you is one of the best parts of any vacation, so this blog features some of our favorite Finger Lakes restaurants. “Non-foodies” who stay at our New York Bed and Breakfast are simply thrilled to get out of the kitchen. “Foodies” love to expand their palates at regional restaurants.

The foodies are in luck. There are many excellent restaurants near the Halsey House.

In the mood for amazing Italian food while staying at the Halsey House? Try ZaZa's Cucina.

Our Favorite Finger Lakes Restaurants (in no particular order):

1. Suzanne Fine Regional Cuisine. It’s romantic. It’s delicious. The service is fantastic. Suzanne’s made Frommer’s “Best Dining Bets in New York State” list.  As they say in their write-up, with its “swoon-worthy views of Seneca Lake,” it is “the place for a special dinner.”

2. Madeline’s. Among locals, Madeline’s has been voted the “Best place to have a Brandy,” the “Best Martini,” and the “Best Continental Restaurant.” All true. We go there for the ambiance and the great food; but when we’re almost too tired to go anywhere, what gets us out the door is Madeline’s desserts. They fill an enormous display case, and are, quite simply, to die for.

3. Hazelnut Kitchen. The menu changes monthly at this intimate bistro, which features fresh, local ingredients. Foodies will enjoy watching the chef at work in the open-to-view kitchen. The aroma of cooking food is intoxicating; the taste of the food even better.

4.Maxie’s Supper Club. If you were hoping to visit New Orleans but could only make it as far as the Finger Lakes Region of New York, eat at Maxie’s. Fun and noisy, this New Orleans style club serves Southern comfort food with flare. Try the slow-smoked barbecue or the oyster bar. There’s a late night kitchen and live music Sunday and Tuesday evenings.

5. ZaZa’s Cucina. The mother and daughter team behind ZaZa’s were born and raised in Northern Italy. In a country known for it’s cuisine, Northern Italy is known for its superlative cuisine. The ambiance is upscale, yet also warm and inviting. The food is fresh and flavorful; and the wine is list long.

We’re foodies, and it’s important to us that guests of our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast enjoy a good meal when they want it. The above listed restaurants are some of our favorites. Please see our Local Dining page for a list of other good restaurants near our inn. And rest assured that you will begin each morning with a gourmet breakfast at the Halsey House.

 

 

 

Romantic Getaway in the Finger Lakes

January 6th, 2012 by Gail

Although 2012 has just begun, February will be here before we know it. We spend January recovering from the holidays and getting back into the swing of things at work. By the time February is upon us, most of us are ready for a little R & R: Relaxation and Romance.

Romance in the bath; Margaret's Retreat.

In fact, February is an ideal month for romantic retreats, especially here in northern climes. Snow is falling as I write, covering the countryside in a soft blanket of white. The crisp air draws lovers together for warmth: we walk hand in hand, shoulder to shoulder; we sit close to one another on the sofa; we curl up together in front of the fireplace. February inspires intimacy.

Give yourself over to intimacy. Treat yourself and your lover to a Romantic Retreat at Halsey House, an elegant Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast.

St. Valentine’s Day is smack in the middle of the month, on a Tuesday; so we propose turning February into a Month of Love. Come when you can get away for a few days, no matter when that is. Our Romantic Nights Package will add romance to any night.

Curl up by fire in Elegance.

The Romantic Nights Package includes a bottle of local Finger Lakes wine (your preference, red or white), dessert for two, served in your room, and a fun, romantic board game (discretely placed in your room). Romance will flourish, whether you’ve been together for two month or 20 years.

Two rooms in our NY Bed and Breakfast have gas fireplaces to help spark a romantic mood: Indulgence and Elegance. Two rooms have two-person Jacuzzi tubs: Indulgence and Margaret’s Retreat. All rooms boast luxurious, Egyptian cotton bedding and feather pillows.

Our Finger Lakes Region Bed and Breakfast is home to dozens of award winning wineries, stunning waterfalls, and the cultural attractions of Ithaca and Cornell. On the other hand, you may not want to leave the inn.

The weekend after Valentine’s Day is President’s Day Weekend. Why not treat your sweetie to three nights of romance at our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast?

 

Don’t Stay Home for the Holidays

November 29th, 2011 by Gail

The holidays are approaching, and across the nation people are making plans. They’re contacting family and friends and discussing options. Some people will travel to see family in distant places. Others will welcome family from distant places into their homes. And still others need a different option.

Treat yourself to Christmas or New Year’s at our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast.

Our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast is a great “meet in the middle” spot for folks coming from points north, south, east and west. In the past, families and friends from Canada, New York State, and Pennsylvania have met here. No one is the host – everyone just relaxes and enjoys the good company.

Still, sometimes it’s just not possible to see family during the holidays. Much as we may wish to spend Christmas with parents, children, and grandchildren in distant locales, schedules and wallets sometimes trump that desire. Yet still, we want the holidays to be special. We want them to stand out from our daily lives.

Spend the holidays at our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast.

Guests are invited to make themselves at home at Halsey House, both in their rooms and in the inn’s common areas. Curl up with a new book by the fireplace in the Parlor, or play an engrossing game of chess with your partner. Enjoy a game on the leather-topped table in the library – the perfect spot for cards and puzzles. Luxuriate in your own room, lounging in bed, watching the HDTV, or soaking in the two-person whirlpool tub.

Numerous activities await beyond the inn’s walls. Walk down the street to Taughannock State Park and gaze in wonder at Taughannock Falls, one of the highest waterfalls east of the Rocky Mountains. Nearby Finger Lakes National Forest has more than 30 miles of trails that lead to lovely gorges, woods, and pasture. If there is snow on the ground, bring your cross-country skis. Or explore the shops, art galleries, museums, and eateries of nearby Ithaca.

Then, of course, there are the wineries. The Finger Lakes Region is known for its wine, and wine tasting is a fantastic holiday treat. Our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast, located between Cayuga and Seneca Lakes, is the perfect home base for folks interested in tasting wines along the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail and Seneca Lake Wine Trail. Travel them on your own, or ask us about a Wine Tasting Tour.

Our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast is twenty minutes from both Cornell University and Ithaca College. We’re two hours from Scranton, Pennsylvania, an hour and a half from Rochester, New York, and an hour and ten minutes from Syracuse, New York. Our inn is nestled in an idyllic region replete with impressive waterfalls, deep gorges, and wonderful wineries. If you’re looking for a special way to celebrate the holidays this year – either Christmas or New Year’s Eve – spend them at Halsey House.

Follow the Cheese to the Finger Lakes Cheese Trail

November 9th, 2011 by Gail

One of the great truths of life is that if you bring a group of people together, they’ll want to eat. No matter the occasion, no matter the location, people enjoy breaking bread together. Sharing a meal breaks the ice and creates a bond.

As the holidays approach, many of us are seeking new flavors for our tables. With holiday gatherings filling our calendars, we want simple dishes that will wow our guests. We want appetizers that will impress without taking hours to prepare.

Say cheese!!!

Visit the artisan cheese makers of the Finger Lakes Region on November 19, 2011.

It’s hard to go wrong with cheese.

A day spent traveling the Finger Lakes Cheese Trail is sure to unveil gustatory delights. Opportunities to visit artisan cheese makers in the Finger Lakes Region are few, but these craftspeople are opening their doors to the public on Saturday, November 19, 2011. It’s a perfect time to spend the weekend at our Finger Lakes Region Bed and Breakfast.

The Finger Lakes Cheese Trail is comprised of thirteen cheese makers. Folks who follow the cheese are invited to tour the facilities and sample the cheese. Participants include:

  • Cowlick Farm, a Finger Lakes Micro-creamery producing pure Creamline Jersey cow milk.
  • 4 Tin Fish Farm, a micro goat dairy producing farmstead cheese from Alpine dairy goats.
  • Shtayburne Farm, a farm with fat happy cows and fifteen hand crafted cheeses.
  • Sunset View Creamery, a dairy run by the 4th and 5th generations of Hoffmans and a Farmstead / Artisan Creamery.

Following the Finger Lakes Cheese Trail is a wonderful way to explore the farming communities of the Finger Lakes Region. It is also a fabulous way to find new flavors for your table. Imagine serving “Across the Pond” from Keeley’s Cheese Company, a semi-soft rind cheese made from raw milk and aged in an underground cellar that you’ve visited. You’ll be able to entertain your guests with stories of your Cheese Trail travels as you all enjoy the cheeses you brought back with you.

Why not make a weekend of it, using our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast as a base? Visit creameries on Saturday and Finger Lakes wineries on Sunday. Wine is the perfect accompaniment to cheese, after all.

Local cheese should be a part of any stay at Halsey House. Many wineries in the region serve local cheeses to wine tasters. Finger Lakes cheese is also available at a number of local farmers markets and shops, such as the Ithaca Bakery, the Ithaca GreenStar Natural Market, Red Jacket Orchards, and the Trumansburg ShurSave (close to our Finger Lakes B&B). In addition, some creameries are open to the public on a regular basis.

Don’t worry if you can’t make it to the Cheese Trail on the 19th; you can still enjoy Finger Lakes cheese.  Please visit our Reservations page to reserve a room at our Finger Lakes Bed and Breakfast.

A complete list of Finger Lakes Region creameries and dairies is available at the Finger Lakes Cheese Trail.

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