My goal today was to write a post about restaurants I recommend in Bali, but plans changed when a friend called and suggested a morning walk. It’s one of those glorious brisk fall days with blue skies and a kaleidoscope of orange, yellow and red trees, and the company couldn’t be beat — the walk was a go.
There is a picture-perfect farm not too far from me called Stone Barns. You probably have heard of Blue Hill at Stone Barns — a 1* Michelin restaurant that is a favorite of Michelle Obama. It is farm-to-table dining in the sense that they heavily rely on the meat and produce from their farm — a former Rockefeller estate — but the cuisine is opulent. Critics adore it. I love the idea, and find the restaurant absolutely stunning, BUT have found the overall experience to be a bit pretentious for my taste. They take themselves very serious — as well they should because the farm is a huge undertaking. But it would also be nice for us regular folk to feel like they have a sense of humor somewhere in there, too.
What you may not know is that there are walking paths winding throughout the property and beyond which are delightful — pastures with cows, turkeys, and ducks, low-lying stone walls, and wide-open vistas which are not the norm for this hilly and aboraceous suburb of New York City — and these are open to the public. Thanks to my good friend, Jen — who took me here last week — I am now officially in-the-know and hooked! It’s only been 10 years since Stone Barns opened… oops. It’s now obvious to me that I research overseas travel way more than my own backyard.
I highly, HIGHLY recommend a visit here to walk the grounds whether you live near-by or are visiting NYC. Dogs are allowed on leash; I passed a couple women on horseback as well. There are curated walking tours for adults and/or kids if that’s more your thing. Throw in the cafe and a remarkable gift shop complete with fresh eggs, meat & produce, an eye-candy array of cookbooks, and stylish gifts — you’ve got a very nice day at the farm. I noticed that tickets are necessary for weekend visits so check out their web site for more information. And, don’t let my lack of enthusiasm keep you from dining at Blue Hill if you can procure one of the coveted reservations — it’s still a remarkable experience to savor.
Want a map of the trails? I found mine HERE.