Monday, April 5, 2010

i must apologize The sun has kept me from any new post. Waking up to see the warm sunshine reflecting off the Hudson river is amazing. Hearing West Point and Vassar Crew teams gliding against the water was once an annoyance but now a welcomed daily tradition. It has been the turning point in the understanding why people live and have homes out here. It was a hard idea to swallow knowing one of the largest and coolest epicenters of the world is two hours away . ITs a clear understanding people like separation either living here daily or your vacation home away from the city.I can understand why people enjoy the Hudson valley whether its the small town atmosphere , Old Industrial history , the amazing (mostly locally driven) foods, or just how epic the scenery is . A month ago i couldn't fathom the idea of staying but as the weather changes , so does the attitude.
This weekend was spent outside ,a group of friends and myself basked in the sun at the Vanderbilt mansion . There we laid like seals in the hot sun trying to remember the last time it was available on the weekend . Throwing the Frisbee ,running around the tall grass , cheering the numerous glasses of wine in celebration for the dry alcohol never tasted better in the scenery and company of each other. We Listened to music ,philosophizing about life and what is to come of it, through are past and the directions we would like to head. I painted trying to use the facets of my surrounding searching for inspiration ,and to transcend the excitement of jubilation on to canvas. I had expressed there was nothing to do here in Hyde Park which is still true ,however what i realized is that this small town offers a slow pace of life i had not really delved into. It strikes me a little off when i right this ,but the simplicity of good company in a nice surrounding made it much more enjoyable. Not having to look at a watch, no emails, no deadline or homework to worry about was as much physically as well as mentally calming .I can only hope to never forget the simplicity of disconnection ; for i know that the stress of this world will continually try to lead us astray .
That night we went to dinner at the Rhinebeck Inn one of the oldest inn's of America . We were treated with a level of respect and generosity that i have never known . The Executive Chef was a CIA Grad. and welcomed us to a few samplers with a wine pair for each cheese , cracker, preserve , and moosh boosh (teeny tiny food). I had not ever had the chance to hear what inspired the layout of a menu, and why it was. We started out with (the Tower) it was a three leveled platter that was filled with all sorts of culinary treats. Smoked cured salmon with fried capers some sort of tartar sauce on little pieces of soft toast, miniature short ribs with meat that was so tender it fell right off the bone, beer battered home made onion rings and cod fried fillets, home maid chips, bacon ale macaroni and cheese, and cheeses and jellys were every where it was awesome. It was a general consensus that we were all going to eat some of each others food so we could all equally enjoy the food with out having to hold back any description or flavor. I ordered calves liver with confit onions and frisee salad ,i thought there would be a good chance of an introduction to a new protein there and felt adventurous for it. My pal Brian ordered the casuelay which was packed with Salmon , salted Cod, and shell fish in a yellow broth . My other friends Jake and his girlfriend Liz ordered the 170z Rib eye that had a puree of foe gras and black truffles with fried onions on top "amazing" . It was the first time being able to enjoy a beautiful decadent , meal with people my age whom truly appreciated the service and finesse of the culinary application. We ended the night with sticky bottom toffee ,it looked like a simple bread that had been cooked in a mini cast iron pan , however it was everything the perfect meal needed to be finished off with . every little morsel of that bread was an explosion of flavor and sweetness that gave you a better out look on life. Any person that took a spoonful of that dessert felt good about where they were in life . We paid the bill and enjoyed the rest of the night in what i can only refer to a swollen state of bliss . That night i rested my head on the pillow wondering of all my friends and family back home , falling asleep i said silently "im on my way"


  1. You had a great adventure Matt! and if your cooking skills are as excellent as your writing skills, you are on your way to being a great chef indeed. Thanks for sharing your life...made me want to try some of your incredible dishes as you described them. ENJOY your days and I raise my glass to you in salute...well done! Aunt Linda

  2. Reading your description of the meal - made me savory every morsel! Good job Matt.