Four years ago the good folks who comprise the Hudson - Berkshire Beverage Trail launched the annual Food & Wine Festival. What a great idea! We think it is one of the best things you can do on Memorial Day weekend. The Festival features local food and drink artisans from all over our region who are producing some incredibly delicious products! This is one-stop shopping - and tasting.
It's no secret that the rich Hudson Valley farmland produces some top notch ingredients. This is your chance to meet the people who transform those raw ingredients into the treats that tantalize your taste buds. It seems to me that most, if not all, the original "charter" vendors are still there, with a few new faces each year, making the Festival bigger and better year after year. These are all small, independent local business, many of which are family owned and operated - this Festival makes it possible for us to support them and their passion directly.
Some of the goodies I've tried and purchased are various honeys, oh so many lovely local wines, mead, beer, olive oil, prepared condiments, maple products, bourbon, whiskey, gin, vodka, berry tarts, a variety of cheeses, sauces and spreads (maple bacon aioli to die for), teas, ciders, jams, and some lovely chocolates (many years the chocolate maker, That's Different Chocolates, completely sells out)! I've also had some nice goat's milk products from Sweet Rama which I enjoyed and gave as gifts - nice soaps and lotions!
There are scheduled talks and demonstrations by local experts throughout the day so that you can take a break from all the eating and drinking and learn about different aspects of food and drink. This year there were presentations about wine making, tea brewing, and decorative food plating, among others. The Festival runs during the day on Saturday and Sunday and is conveniently hosted at the Columbia County Fairgrounds in Chatham - inside - so there is plenty of space and parking. See you there!