I love the city, but I’m also not adverse to escaping every now and then for more greenery and less hubbub. And it’s easy; there are just so many places just a few hours away upstate that offer this respite.

So after work today, Ryan and I hopped in the car and headed to Phoenicia, a teeny rural town about three hours north of the city. It’s in the Catskill Mountains, which take up much of the southeastern section of the state. Coming up here was a new experience for me – but I still wanted to do a new activity on arrival as well.

But by the time we pulled up at our mini wood cabin, a full moon was out and everything was shut. We managed to stumble through the dark to find the one bar in town (Ricciardella’s) that was open until 11 and decided to try out some local, New York state wines.

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As the other patrons cleared the bar, we settled down and opted for a bottle from the Penguin Bay Winery, which is in Romulus, a town west of here. We went for the Maroon Four and while its after taste was a little sour and it’s by no means the best red I’ve had, it was light and fruity – and we had no problem polishing off the bottle…

…before heading back to the mini cabin for more local wine – this time a bottle of Millbrook that we’d picked up on the way. This was far better, with heavier berries and not so much acidity. But by this point I’d had nearly a bottle, so who knows really.

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Hurrah for Phoenicia. After that bottle, it’s no surprise that I already feel more relaxed.

Lovely Phoenicia

Lovely Phoenicia