Cuisine Trail invites people to sample North Country cuisine
GABRIELS – The grand opening of the Adirondack Lakes Cuisine Trail took place Tuesday at Moody Tree Farm’s new wedding venue, overlooking Whiteface Mountain and the High Peaks.
Coinciding with EAT ADK Week, more than a dozen businesses, restaurants and culinary institutions shared tastings of their local cuisine that helped put their establishments on the Adirondack Cuisine Trail map.
Paul Smith’s College Chief Marketing Officer and Adirondack Cuisine Trail President Shannon Oborne opened the evening with an introduction to the six regional cuisine trails as well as presenting data from their cuisine trail strategic study.
As the lead organization, the Adirondack Cuisine Trail focuses on exploring the area as a whole while each individual trail is spearheaded by its own group of volunteers. The Champ Trail consists of 18 venues, North Country Trail has 12 stops, Ausable Valley Trail opens with 13 venues, Boquet Valley Trail highlights 14 stops, and Champlain Valley Trail has 7 locations. The Adirondack Lakes Cuisine Trail currently has 19 culinary stops throughout Franklin County including Gabriels, Lake Clear, Saranac Lake, and the Tupper Lake communities.
Cherie Whitten of the Tupper Lake Health Hub spoke about her connection to the land. As a working organic farmer and owner of The Health Hub’s deli, buffet, and market, Whitten stressed the importance of connecting farms to restaurants.
“Our goal is to continue to promote local food and promote our area as a food destination,” Lake Clear Lodge and Retreat co-owner and ADK Lakes Cuisine Trail volunteer Ernest Hohmeyer said. “We have been working toward this goal for years. Our area is not just hiking and paddling, but also a place to enjoy delicious local cuisine.”
Over 200 guests enjoyed samplings from Nori’s Village Market, Blue Moon Cafe, the Lake Clear Lodge and Retreat, the Hotel Saranac’s Campfire Grill, Paul Smith’s College, the Wild Center, North Country Food Lab, The Hub, the Airport ADK CAVU Cafe, Paul Smith’s VIC, and Fiddlehead Bistro. Moody Farm provided the venue and a locally-produced balsam sachet for all participants.
Instead of the traditional ribbon cutting and to emphasize the theme of a food destination, Lake Clear Lodge and Retreat co-owner Cathy Hohmeyer baked a 17-foot-long loaf of fresh bread.
“I thought it would be much more appropriate and fun to do a bread cutting rather than a ribbon cutting,” Cathy Hohmeyer said. “We invited all the members to come up and participate.”
Cathy Hohmeyer encourages all interested establishments to join the ADK Lakes Cuisine Trail.
The volunteer-run organization has applications and its members are always willing to answer any questions about the New York state approval process.
As the destination cuisine trails grow, the Adirondack Cuisine Trail organization is already preparing for the next stage, an international cuisine trail connecting the Adirondacks with Vermont and Canada.