Virtuoso Life - May/June 2017 - 109
Garden features 17 carved
Venetian gondola poles.
and a way of grilling lobster tails to perfection. He also serves ice cream cones and
cotton candy to the adults for dessert. It's
all textbook Berkshires, actually: cultured
and sophisticated, without taking itself
too, too seriously.
The Berkshires run the length of western Mass, and Lenox is the ideal base for a
long weekend of dipping into its cool blue
lakes and sidetracking to farm stands and
antique stores. The same utopian surroundings that inspired the Vanderbilts
and Carnegies to erect sprawling weekend
"cottages" now attract urban escape artists
looking for barefoot good times that also
nourish the body and brain.
Always a haven for the intelligentsia (Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival, for example,
celebrates its 85th year this summer with
more than 150 performances of the highest
caliber), the region has recently blossomed
as a culinary destination. Rubiner's Cheesemongers & Grocers in Great Barrington carries sweet creams and cheeses from farms
20 minutes away - its café serves excellent
country pâté and fondue sandwiches. In
Lenox, Alta Restaurant & Wine Bar is like a
test kitchen for whatever's fresh from Equinox Farm in Sheffield.
A few places require searching out. My
new BBQ BFFs recommend an out-of-theway, 200-year-old farmhouse on the edge
of a state forest that was once a speakeasy
frequented by Bob Dylan and Leonard Bernstein. Today at The Dream Away Lodge,
diners wander a wildflower meditation
labyrinth while sipping its signature vodka
drink, the Hilltown Hooker, before sitting
down to a seasonal menu. GPS won't get you
there, but proprietor Daniel Osman can help
with directions. As that classic local anthem
goes, "Winter, spring, summer, or fall, all
you've got to do ..."
Oh, you know the words.
HISTORY LEAVES ITS MARK IN COUNT-
less ways, so plan for a weekend packed with
unexpected diversions. Six miles south of
Lenox, Stockbridge is the quintessential
first stop. Settled in 1734 as a mission for
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CULTURAL JOURNEYS & EXPEDITIONS
For details on our 2018 journeys, please contact your preferred Virtuoso advisor.