A Hudson Valley Brunch Adventure with The Brothers Buoy
The Brothers Buoy is a NYC based restaurant review site, specializing in brunch. Make sure to check out their Instagram for daily antics and probably a burger or two.
Winter in New York City is gorgeous in the movies. The way the snow insulates all the noise and covers up the dirty streets with a clean blanket of white. The people all smartly dressed with perfectly accented scarves, hats, and gloves to go with their wonderfully fitting jackets. On every face, a look of wonder and amazement.
But check it. That’s not how it really is. Winter in the city is the actual worst and everyone knows it. The subways are sweaty, your apartment is never the right temperature, and there isn’t a single bar in the city with a decent place to hang a giant winter coat. Biggest coat of all time. Goose down.
This is why, when given the chance to get our handsome behinds out of this frigid prison for a weekend escape in the stunningly picturesque city of Hudson, we couldn’t pack our bags fast enough. The feeling of leaving New York City by car is hands down the best way to really feel the escape. Watching the Empire State Building slowly fade into the background just as the crescendo hits in Hamilton’s “Wait For It” is an experience so emotional, you might just crash your whip.
The lovely people at Red Cottage hosted us at their newest rental in the Hudson area called Whale and Grove. Now, you might be saying to yourself: “Whale and Grove? Ain’t no whales in no groves.” Well, allow us to explain. The house is set in the middle of a sprawling 18-acre working apple orchard, which couldn’t make you feel like any more of a baller if it tried. As for whales, Hudson used to be one of the biggest whaling towns in the country; ships would sail down the river to the Atlantic to hunt them, then bring their capture back up to the ports to be processed and sold. See, when you started reading this, you didn’t even know you were going to get a history lesson. We’re always trying to give back.
We approached the house after dark which, contrary to what you’re probably thinking, was an amazing time to arrive. There were Edison bulbs a-danglin’ from the trees and every light inside shone brightly into the night, like a lighthouse beacon letting us sailors know that we were coming safely into port. The next morning, we awoke like babes on Christmas morn to a house flooded with natural sunlight from seemingly every angle. We bounded about, searching every corner of every room, as the attention to detail in this house just about made our heads explode.
Our favorite room in the house was called the “Smoking Room.” Host to our best friend on the trip, the fireplace (aka Waka Flocka Flame), coated in a cool nautical blue and trimmed with brass fixtures, we basically spent every moment of our time here. This room has some of the most incredible details as well, with matchbooks from local hangouts, displays of delicate glassware, and a categorized liquor wall — it was as if someone had had a microphone in our head for years and designed this room just for us.
Before we left for our first meal of the day, we posed for a stock photograph of “laughing friends at table,” which went off without a hitch, and is available at Shutterstock.com.
We hopped in the car and cut a line of flame to the hottest plate in town, Fish & Game, just a 10-minute drive from the house. The famed husband and wife duo, Chef Zak Pelaccio and Chef Jori Jayne Emde, turned out some of the most face melting farm-to-table cuisine that we have ever had the pleasure of consuming. Everything was amazing in its simplicity — the flavors in every bite were enough to send your pants to the moon without you. The absolute standout was the buttermilk biscuit, which came with sausage, cheese, and a sunny-side up egg.
We spent the rest of the afternoon doing our best to take in as much of the town of Hudson as we could, having discussions on whether or not our food babies would be male or female, and obviously stopping along the way wherever an incredible hand printed sign appeared.
A few of the highlights from our walk were the Tradewinds gift store, a socially conscious shop which provides employment opportunities for folks with disabilities, as well as the Moto coffee/motorcycle shop which needs no explanation as to why it was cool. One of our absolute favorite spots in town was Olde Hudson, a specialty grocery store which was so attractive, we had to test some of the food to make sure we weren’t on some kinda movie set.
The following day, we made our way to another fabulous brunch at the absolutely unbeatable Gaskins, in Germantown, not far from the town of Hudson. Drenched in ooey gooey sunlight, we were welcomed to an amazing specialty menu put together for the Super Bowl. (It was Superbowl Sunday, we totes forgot to mention.) Started by the husband and wife team of Nick and Sarah Suarez (noticing a trend?), Gaskins served up some of the most serious eats this side of the Hudson River.
One of our favorite things about this place was their out of this world cocktail list, each one its own work of alcoholic art. Ingredients like blood oranges, cynar, and mezcal were flowing like a Niagara Falls and we couldn’t get enough of it. Also, the burger. Like just look at that thing.
Our trip ended at Olana State Historic Site which, as you guys can see with thine own peepers, shows off one of the most breathtaking views of the Hudson Valley. The property was owned by Hudson River school master Frederic Church, who built the house pulling inspiration from his worldly travels, transforming each room into a different destination. A spectacular way to end our trip, surveying the land that had so swiftly become our home away from home.