A Taste of Massachusetts


It’s no secret that here at Living we thrive on discovering unique and small businesses, and that we’re constantly combing the country to see what makers of all types (crafters, artists, farmers, chefs, restaurateurs…) are up to. Recently, I was given the opportunity to experience a little “home away from home” right here in New York City with a “Taste of Massachusetts.”

At the Culinary Loft, an events space in Soho, I quickly returned to my New England roots and felt right at home while sampling some of the state’s best seafood and local produce. If you ever head to the Bay State, don’t miss the following:

The first stop on my tasting adventure was the Red Lion Inn of Sturbridge, Massachusetts, where Chef Brian Alberg, who’s worked as head chef there for nine years, served up delicious sweet corn and stinging-nettle pancakes with roasted beets, Berle Farm cheese, and smoked almonds. “What sets the Red Lion apart,” states Alberg, “is that while it has deep historical roots, it also recognizes the importance of being current and relevant in both food and lodging.”

My next tasting stop was Island Creek Oyster Bar, located in Duxbury, Massachusetts. When you visit the actual location, you can take a tour of the oyster skiffs with a mollusk expert as a tour guide. Bonus—all visitors leave with fresh oysters. Although I have yet to take the tour, I’ve tasted the oysters, and this stop is definitely on my “to do list” next time I’m home visiting the family. It’s a must if you’re a seafood fanatic like I am!

After some oysters, the logical stop was to try a few wines from the Travessia Urban Winery, located in New Bedford, Massachusetts, where owner Marco Montez grows his own grapes. I sampled his Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Vidal Blanc, and Pinot Noir, all of which were delicious and paired perfectly with the food. Even if you’re not lucky enough to be heading to Massachusetts anytime soon, you can still order a few bottles (or a case!) of Travessia’s wine here.

Additional sites on the “Taste of Massachusetts” event: Tower Hill Botanical Gardens, Zoar Outdoor, Peabody Essex Museum, Barrington Stage Company, New England Brewery Tours, Bully Boy Distillers, Alden & Harlow.

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