Some of you eat to live, but some of us live to eat! That’s why we have to tell you about these five totally tempting places to take a trip. These resorts will have you oohing and aahing over the ambiance, plus your mouth will be watering over the menu!
Make a plan to visit Plymouth, Massachusetts and the Mirbeau Inn & Spa for some foliage and fruits de la mer. Guests with a penchant for foraging can join Executive Chef Stephen Coe at the neighboring Plymouth Rock Oyster Farm for a tutorial on picking and shucking oysters. Then, an intimate group will be privy to a farm dinner including oysters, scallops, lobster, saltwater corn and prosecco.
In upstate New York, another off-site adventure beckons at 1000 Islands Harbor Hotel (Clayton, N.Y.) where guests head out on the St. Lawrence River with Captain Jeff Garnsey to fish for their supper — literally. The day’s haul will be cooked over a hardwood campfire for a traditional Shore Dinner: In a single cast iron skillet, Captain prepares salt pork sandwiches and fried fish, followed by French toast, served with local maple syrup.
Want a scrumptious stay that stands a little more on ceremony? Outside Raleigh The Umstead Hotel and Spa (Cary, N.C.) boasts a seven course Kaiseki dinner by Executive Chef Steven Greene that begins with a spectacular tableside tea ceremony (video above) served in custom teacups (by potter Ben Owen, whose larger-scale works are showcased throughout the art-centric hotel). It’s an unexpected start to the dinner experience — which will continue with a heavy emphasis on North Carolina products and produce from the Hotel’s own garden and nearby farm.
For the DIYer… Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain (Scottsdale, Ariz.) has a “Mi Casa, Mi Chef” package that takes the relationship between diner and chef to new dimensions. Guests will gather inspiration from Sanctuary’s Mountainside Estates’ picturesque panoramic while working hand-in-hand with a Sanctuary chef (like Food Network star Beau MacMillan!) to plan and execute a fully customized dining experience. Participants will determine a menu with the best best fruits, vegetables, fish and meat of the day, then join the chef in the kitchen of their private home, working side-by-side to prepare the feast. Additional in-home spa treatments are a luxurious way to complete the experience… How’s that for decadent digestion!?!
Not every culinary moment can — or should — be planned. Chatham Bars Inn (Chatham, Mass., on Cape Cod) is set up for spontaneity. The oceanfront resort’s luxury fleet stands ready to whisk guests to sea for big game sport fishing, among other leisure pursuits. (One guest caught a 350 lb. blue fin tuna!) And if you don’t want to be the one luring in lunch, just hang out on the beach! You’ll often catch Executive Chef Anthony Cole greeting boats at shore, where he’ll immediately filet the fish for fresh sashimi, served gratis to guests on standby in the sand.
Bon journée and Bon appétit!