The Lakeside Blog springs forth from the creative mind of Michelle Bruck at the Interlaken Inn, Lakeville, CT. She writes about events, great places to visit and cool things to do – in and around Lakeville & Salisbury Connecticut.
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This is Cornus Florida - also known as Flowering Dogwood. It is a species of flowering plant in the family Cornaceae and is native to eastern North America. These deciduous trees can grow up to 33 feet high, and usually are wider than they are tall when they are mature. Our dogwood tree is certainly not 33 feet high, but one that cannot go unnoticed at our pool garden. It is gorgeous! If you were at the Inn last week you would have noticed an arrangement in our lobby that also had dogwood stems, and that sure made a statement as well. Before you take that refreshing dip in our outdoor heated pool take a moment to admire the flowering dogwood!
When we say - "We have worked the past decade to source out the best ingredients from our area and translate them to your plate. Whether it is our local vegetable purveyors, grass fed ranchers, cheese makers, or our own kitchen garden, we have our fingers on the pulse of the Berkshires" - we mean it!
This is the basis of my "What's Local" blog each week this summer - to share with you a local ingredient on our dinner menu, from where it is from to the health benefits of that item. Like me, it may introduce you to a new item, one you've heard of but never sure of, or one of your old favorites. Here is an item on our current Morgan's dinner menu:
"Roasted Natural Chicken Breast, Wild Foraged Watercress, Roasted Potatoes, Spring Herb Oil"
Which ingredient is local? Actually, more than one item in this dish is local, but I am going to focus on the "Wild Foraged Watercress". I'll be honest as to say I wasn't sure what "foraged" meant so just in case there are others wondering it means 'searching for and exploiting food resources.' Chef Scimeca has watercress growing all over his property at Scimeca Farm, and he happiliy "forages" for it in his streams and brings it to the Interlaken kitchen. (For any of you who know Brandon you can certainly picture him doing this!)
Watercress is one of the oldest known leaf vegetables eaten by humans, and contains significant amounts of iron, calcium, iodine, and folic acid, in addition to both Vitamin A and C.
Weekly Summer Series
Next week I'll be kicking off the weekly summer blog series! I've got some hot topics that I'll talk about every week, such as "What's Local" "What's blooming" "What's New" and "Pet of the Week". There is always something local on our menu in Morgan's, there is always something pretty blooming in our gardens, there is always a happy pet staying with us, and there is always something NEW happening at Interlaken. These 4 topics will keep me blogging practically daily right through the end of summer. Oh and I should probably slip in something about weekly weddings too! Anyway, first up, and one of my favorite topics: "What's local"!
I received these three Guest Feedback emails in a row this afternoon and just had to share.
“As always”, it’s a pleasure to stay there.
“As always”, our stay was very pleasant and we thank you. The restaurant staff was particularly helpful and courteous. Looking forward to visiting with you again this summer, Labor Day weekend.
“As always” the accommodations were excellent. The staff was courteous and welcoming. The room was clean. A pleasant stay all in all.
John, Jeff and Bill - “as always” - THANK YOU! We so appreciate that you continue to choose to stay at Interlaken.
Eat your leafy greens.
You read and hear that everywhere. Yes, we all know it is important to get our daily doses of the green stuff, but maybe you just don't like it. It tastes bland, like lawn clippings or weeds (not that you've tasted either of those...) It just doesn't taste good at all to you. I completely understand that, but I think I've got a way for you to get a top-rated green into your diet in an extremely pleasant way. It requires you to visit Morgan's rsetaurant just once to try it, and chances are you will never look at this top-rated green the same way again.
Local Honeycrisp Apple and Heirloom Kale Salad, Pecorino Vinaigrette, Black Olive Crunch
We don't disguise the true flavor of Kale, we enhance it. Kale is very high in beta carotene, vitamin K, vitamin C and rich in calcium, so it's definitely a real good green to get into your diet as much as possible. This simple salad is my always chosen starter when I dine in Morgan's, and sometimes it is all I have. It's delicious and I encourage you to try it and tell me what you think!
Wedding Garden Greenery
I love it when the sides to the pavilion are removed and put in storage for the season. That simple change alters the look immensely as immediately the setting for the wedding reception is hugged by pretty flowers, greenery and wonderful fresh air. It takes you outside yet keeps you protected. Now is the time to make an appointment with Brandon Scimeca to come and see if this space is perfect for your wedding reception!
H 2 0
Mother Nature has decided to keep us moist these past couple of days to ensure we have lush greenery for all of our upcoming weddings this season. Thank you Mother Nature! OK I might be stretching this a bit but we have to always look on the bright side… but speaking of H20, how about using some in a hot cup of Harney Tea? Or receiving an Interlaken bottled water as part of your corporate retreat boxed lunch? A tall glass of water as you anxiously await the arrival of the most amazing cottage dill rolls in Morgan’s? How about surrounding yourselves in water as you take a canoe ride around the lake? Now we are talking water! Anything lakeside has got to make you smile, and even on dreary days try your best to enjoy it. Let us prepare you a picnic basket for a lakeside lunch – admiring the view from your car of course. Or be adventurous and grab an umbrella as well as your sweetie’s hand and take a stroll to the lake. If being out in the rain isn’t your cup of tea (back to tea again!) then stay inside your Guestroom and order room service. Or challenge a family member to a game of pool. Enjoy a spa service. Check out our complimentary movie library and cozy up to one you haven’t see in ages. Shopping at the local villages can be done in any weather! Ask our front desk service staff for more rainy day activities so we can keep your stay with us happy and bright!
Let's talk Food!
It seems like it has been awhile that I've blogged about one of my favorite things, and that is food. No matter your reason for visiting Interlaken, we've got any and all areas of food covered for you.
Staying with us mid-week? join Brenda for fresh omelets and other deluxe continental breakfast items complimentary from 6:30am to 9:30am.
Invited to a Summer wedding? Start with a local sweet watermelon salad with feta, pinenuts and balsamico followed by your choice of Swordfish with Summer Fruit Relish or Chicken stuffed with Ricotta and wild mushrooms with a lemon thyme sauce or Grilled Filet Mignon.
Your wife is turning 50? Celebrate with our Chef's Tasting Menu! Exclusive six course Chef's 'farm to table' tasting menu for dinner in Morgan's Restaurant. On your day of arrival Chef Scimeca will customize a private menu based on the bounty of the Berkshires.
Arriving late? No worries! Sign up for our late night snack option: Turkey Club sandwich, with chips, pickle, bottled water and homemade cookie delivered to your room prior to arrival.
You've heard our restaurant is "amazingly good"? Make a reservation in Morgan's and choose one of our entrees from Crisp Homemade Gnocchi, Spring Peas, Pea Shoots, Ramps, Parmesan Cream to Grilled King Salmon, Marinated Cucumbers & Leeks, Saffron Yogurt, Lemon Confit to Roasted Natural Half Chicken, Baby Arugula, Roasted Potatoes, Spring Herb Oil.
You're taking your kids away on vacation? Surprise them with a cookie basket! A basket of homemade cookies (suitable for two people) delivered to your room prior to arrival.
Proposing? Arrange for Chocolate Covered Strawberries and Champagne on Ice to be in your room after she says yes.
Joining us for dessert after seeing a movie at the Moviehouse? Try our Double Chocolate Ganache Torte with Homemade Vanilla Bean Ice Cream.
Desiring a lakeside picnic? Sign up for our "Instant Romance Package" where a picnic lunch is included in your package.
Looking to take your corporate staff away for some teambuilding? Our Culinary Challenge is made to bring your team together using their culinary expertise!
Kicking off your wedding weekend with a rehearsal dinner? Arrange for a bonfire held lakeside complete with s'mores and hot chocolate!
Reuniting the Family this summer? Gather round our red and white checked tables and Let our Chef grill flat iron steaks, hot dogs and burgers at a Four-Star Barbecue complete with corn on the cob and fresh strawberry shortcake!
Yes, I am OPEN!
It was a very long winter. I was empty and cold for so long, but now I am full once again and at a warm 76 degrees. Normally I open up on Memorial Day weekend, but to accommodate a special group this month Tom took the time and opened me up sooner. The trees and flowers have blossomed around me, the lounge chairs are ready for sitting and the umbrellas will protect my happy Guests from the hot sun. Please make sure you spend an afternoon with me keeping me company this summer!
A clean contribution
As I was in our housekeeping supply area checking out the new delivery of 300 thread count sheets and pillowcases, I couldn't help but notice this bin:
This is proof we collect our gently used Guestroom soap after each check-out and then send it off to the Clean the World organization so that they can reprocess and then distribute it to countries in need. Looks like we need to get it boxed up and out of here! Although Interlaken signed on to this program as one of the first in Connecticut in 2009, there are now thousands of hotel properties across the country supporting this wonderful program. Here is more information about Clean the World!
ABOUT Clean the World
Clean the World Foundation, Inc. was founded in February 2009 by two individuals, Shawn Seipler and Paul Till. Clean the World is a Florida not-for-profit corporation under 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Clean the World has a two-part mission:
- Collect and recycle soap and shampoo products discarded by the hospitality industry every day.
- Through the distribution of these and other donated hygiene products to impoverished people, prevent the millions of deaths caused by hygiene-related illnesses every day.
Clean the World implements its mission through
- Collecting, sorting and processing discarded soap, shampoo conditioner and lotion product donations from participating hospitality partners
- Collection of donated hygiene products from manufacturers
- Recycling these product donations at its facilities in Orlando, Florida
- Delivering these recycled product donations to domestic homeless shelters and impoverished countries suffering from high death rates due to acute respiratory infection and diarrheal disease.
Since its inception, Clean the World has been steadily increasing its services and operations to accommodate rapidly expanding community needs, awareness and donations, and has accepted in-kind donations of more than $2,000,000. In the process, Clean the World has put over 11 million soap bars and 325,000 pounds of shampoo and conditioner back into human use, simultaneously eliminating over 750 tons of waste.
Clean the World is supported by the generous contributions of individuals and organizations worldwide, through Hospitality Recycling Program fees, in-kind donations, and fundraising events. Over 95% of our cash donations and program fees go directly into program operations
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