Rhinebeck Journals

Rhinebeck is for Epicurians

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A February 2001 trip to Rhinebeck by Tavia

Veranda House Bed & Breakfast Photo, Rhinebeck, New York More Photos
Quote: In desperate need of a romantic, bucolic weekend, we fled New York City to Rhinebeck and were served up our R&R on a silver platter, with garnish!

Rhinebeck is for Epicurians

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Overview

Country Store Photo, Rhinebeck, New York
Quote:
Situated in the Hudson Valley of Duchess County, Rhinebeck is only an hour and a half up the Taconic Parkway from Manhattan. Rhinebeck dates back to the days before the American Revolution ("George Washington slept here" is said without irony), and is a small town ("downtown" runs about 6 streets up and 6 across) with an urban sensibility. You will see art galleries in 200+ year-old houses, the corner drug store's wooden Indian next to a trendy eatery, and the movie theater in town showing limited-run art films. There are gourmet restaurants and bakeries on almost every street, (the Culinary Institute is right up Route 9 in Hyde Park with four training restaurants). The opulent Gilded A...Read More

Veranda House Bed & Breakfast

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Hotel | "Veranda House"

Veranda House Bed & Breakfast Photo, Rhinebeck, New York
Quote:
Innkeepers Linda and Ward Stanley say in their brochure that Veranda House is a Federal house built in 1842, built from the American Pattern Book and listed in the National Register of Historic Places. (We believe them -- Ward taught architecture and art for many years.) Linda and Ward are also well-practiced hosts, interested in your day and your background, but not at all nosy and always ready with a suggestion of an activity or a place to dine. They also cook a delicious, abundant breakfast, with amazing muffins and breads, as well as twirled bacon sticks that are crunchy as well as mystifying (how do they get them twirled like that?). The house itself is beautiful, with a fireplace in the si...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 9, 2001

Veranda House Bed & Breakfast
6487 Montgomery Street
Rhinebeck, New York 12572
(845) 876-4133

American Bounty Restaurant

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Restaurant | "American Bounty"

American Bounty Restaurant Photo, Rhinebeck, New York
Quote:
American Bounty is one of four training restaurants run by the Culinary Institute of America, where the students do everything, from seat diners, prepare the food, wait and bus tables, and even try their hand at managing. (The other three restaurants are Caterina de Medici, Escoffier, and Apple Pie Bakery Cafe.) They are serving and cooking for credits -- the final credits before graduation, so depending on when you go they are either anxiously doting or joyfully distracted with an iminent graduation day. You even get to grade them with a mini-report card at the end of yor meal. This unique fine dining experience results in exquisite food with service that does not always live up to the food, but th...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 10, 2001

American Bounty Restaurant
1946 Campus Drive, Roth Hall
Rhinebeck, New York 12538
(845) 471-6608

Eveready Diner

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Restaurant

Eveready Diner Photo, Hyde Park, New York
Quote:
Eveready Diner is one of those New-Retro places. It harkens back to the golden age of diner cuisine, when they were all neon and stainless steel paneling, when the waitresses were called Alice and Belle and the cooks in the back could fry a dozen eggs at a time and have them all come out perfectly while gripping a cigarette between their lips. This diner, though, is a bit pricier with an attempt at semi-gourmet and healthy dishes. The menu offers the bottomless cup of coffee "leaded or unleaded" as well as a mochaccino; a tuna melt as well as the trattoria chicken sandwich, and meatloaf as well as penne with sun-dried tomatoes and thyme. Prices range from acceptable to a few dollars too much, serv...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 10, 2001

Eveready Diner
4189 Albany Post Road Route 9 North
Hyde Park 12538
(845) 229-8100

Beekman 1766 Tavern

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Restaurant

Beekman 1766 Tavern Photo, Rhinebeck, New York
Quote:
Built in 1766, this tavern is part of the oldest continuously operated inn in the nation. It is a large building, and when you walk in you feel as if you've stepped into a clean and elegant hunting lodge. The uneven floors are wide wooden planks, the tables and chairs are colonial style, just the tiniest bit greasy from many hands grabbing at them. Fireplaces and presidential portraits abound. There are several dining rooms, one which includes a long rustic bar (the Beekman is after all a Tavern) and around which hovers the sense of an apres-ski party. We went in February so reservations were made but not necessary -- we showed up half an hour early and they could seat us right away. But in the ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 10, 2001

Beekman 1766 Tavern
4 W. Market Street Route 9
Rhinebeck, New York
(845) 871-1766

Marco Polo Ristorante

Restaurant | "Marco Polo's Ristorante"

Marco Polo Ristorante Photo, Rhinebeck, New York
Quote:
Marco Polo's fills a need in Rhinebeck: the need for a moderately-priced meal! Most of the restaurants in Rhinebeck have been started by graduates of the CIA and cater to New Yorkers in Rhinebeck for a weekend getaway, and they also are pricey. If you are looking for a cheap meal (or a place well-suited for families), Marco Polo's is one of your few options in town. However, I eat at reasonably priced restaurants all the time and am not usually disappointed. Marco Polo's disappoints. If you absolutely must eat here, stick to the basics: a Pizza Margherita, Pasta Bolognese, maybe a sandwich. I got a dish of pasta with mushrooms, ham and cream sauce that almost made me nauseous. The pasta was dre...Read More

Member Rating 1 out of 5 on April 9, 2001

Marco Polo Ristorante
32 Montgomery Street
Rhinebeck, New York
(845) 876-3228

Upstate Films

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Attraction

Upstate Films Photo, Rhinebeck, New York
Quote:
Upstate Films is an enclave of intelligent movies in Duchess County. For moviegoers who prefer movies with subtitles, quirky cinematography, controversial topics and lesser-known actors and directors, this is the place for you. It is small and has only a couple of theaters, but manages to show three or four different films each week. While we were there, Upstate Films was showing or would be showing Before Night Falls, In the Mood For Love (Hong Kong), Malena (Italy), Faithless (Liv Ullmann), House of Mirth (UK), Pollock, Yi-Yi (Taiwain), Chac (Mexico) and Goya in Bordeaux (Spain). They publish a bi-weekly newsletter with reviews of all movies being shown and "definite maybes." In addition to these...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 9, 2001

Upstate Films
6415 Montgomery Street
Rhinebeck, New York 12572
(845) 876-2515

Springwood/The Home of Franklin Roosevelt

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Attraction | "Springwood - FDR Home, Library and Museum"

Springwood/The Home of Franklin Roosevelt Photo, Hyde Park, New York
Quote:
The Springwood mansion, Val-kill (the home of Eleanor Roosevelt after the death of her husband) and the Vanderbilt Mansion are the only three Gilded Age mansions open year-round. There are seven other mansions that you can visit with admission during the spring, summer and fall. You can buy one ticket which will give you entrance to all three nationally-cared for homes at a reduced rate ($18) than if you bought separate tickets for each site. The individual ticket for Springwood is $10 per adult. Note that for all three government-run mansions, you would do best to arrive early to avoid the lines. You must go through the houses as partof a tour, so you get a ticket for a scheduled time only. In t...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 3, 2001

Springwood/The Home of Franklin Roosevelt
Route 9
Hyde Park, New York 12538
845-229-9115

Vanderbilt Mansion

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Attraction

Vanderbilt Mansion Photo, Rhinebeck, New York
Quote:
The Hudson River Valley is home to more than its fair share of Gilded Age mansions, and many of the locals know a surprising amount about the giants of industry who chose the Hudson River Valley as their home beginning in the 1890's. (There was no income tax or labor unions at that time, so these magnates kept every penny they made in profit! The mansions in Duchess County reflect this amazing amount of wealth.) To visit this manion, originally owned by Frederick Vanderbilt, you pay an admission of $8, as the house is maintained by the National Parks System. For this $8 you get an extraordinary guided tour by knowledgable guides. Ours seems sincerely proud to be associated with a relic of the Gilde...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on May 3, 2001

Vanderbilt Mansion
Route 9
Rhinebeck 12538
(845) 229-7770

Dutchess Wine Trail

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Attraction

Dutchess Wine Trail Photo, Rhinebeck, New York
Quote:
The Dutchess Wine Trail is a self-guided driving tour through the vineyards, orchards, farms and small towns that make up backwoods Dutchess County. With the help of the brochure, and the green signs that (for the most part) clearly mark the way, we drove first to Clinton Vineyards, then to Millbrook Vineyards, and finally up to Cascade Mountain Winery & Restaurant, the gem of the three. We went in the winter, on a snowy, rough day, so we were literally the only kooks on the trail that weekend -- the winemakers we spoke with said they do almost 90% of their business in the summer and fall months. Indeed -- our car could not even make it up the icy and muddy drive to the Millbrook Vineyards tast...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 12, 2001

Dutchess Wine Trail

Rhinebeck, New York

When you get to the fork in the road... Photo, Rhinebeck, New York
Quote:
... you see signs indicating "Cow Xing" ... you see a literal fork in the road at the figurative fork in the road ... you eat delicious gourmet meals ... you are surrounded by American history ... you feel romantic ... you start to think you could successfully move out of the city and become a dairy farmer ... the Hudson River looks clean Below please find a few more photos of the area I took that are too charming to leave out of this journal! If this area of New York State sounds wonderful to you, I suggest you read COUNTRY MATTERS by Michael Korda. It is a funny and colorful nonfiction account of moving from the city to Pleasant Valley into an old far...Read More
Horses Photo, Rhinebeck, New York
Quote:
This self-guided driving tour (see my Specialty Tour entry) is so scenic that Rick and I took a dozen photos, each more pastoral and bucolic than the next. I wanted to share some more of the shots along the way, to better convey the perfectly picturesque afternoon we had.

About the Writer

Tavia

Tavia
New York, New York