Eating Local

There are three sections here.  First, places to eat out for breakfast, lunch and dinner, also take-out service.  We point out the places with a local food angle since that’s becoming strong around here.  The second section points to places to buy local food, including the various farms and  farmer’s markets.  Lastly we describe two community programs that help you grow your own food as part of a community group.  These places are in Google Maps where you can search for them.

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Places to Eat Out or Take Away

In Keene Valley:

Subalpine Coffee is a hip coffee shop with all your favorite espresso drinks as well as breakfast and lunch delights.  Baked goods and snacks are wonderful.  A great place to hang out and chat with friends. It is the last place to get  coffee before I-87.

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The Noonmark DinerFamous for it pies, this is a much loved and popular classic diner.  Breakfast, lunch, dinner and ice cream, 7 days a week.

The Ausable Inn – a landmark that’s been here forever, dependably open all year, lunch and dinner, bar – its annual Halloween Party is not to be missed.

The Valley Grocery (sandwiches to go) – you can buy your lunch here.  Call in your order to avoid waiting.  This is one way to get a trail lunch in town.

Graze, open for lunch and dinner, the new restaurant in town.  Give it a try.  They will have a liquor license soon.

Rivermede Farm Market also offers take out lunch and some dinners.

On 9N towards Elizabethtown

Baxter Mountain Tavern – on the top of Spruce Hill, a very popular place for lunch, dinner, bar, 7 days a week.  They have wifi.

In Keene:

ADK Cafe – Serving fresh local foods, breakfast, lunch, and dinner, in downtown Keene. Open days change seasonally so call and check. The whole menu is available for take-out.  There is a full bar.  They have a new expresso machine so this is a place to get your latte in the morning.  They have a market up the street in a different building.

cedarrunCedar Run Bakery and Market – Opens early and sells coffee and baked goods as well as take-out lunch items and soups. There is no table service, but there are a few places to sit and have coffee or a sandwich, including two picnic tables out front. Offers extensive home made frozen “take and bake” items for dinner.  One freezer case stocks unusual meats such as pheasant or wild boar sausage.  Many kinds of specialty food items such as sauces, condiments, etc. It also has a nice selection of wines and liquors.  It is open 7-7, seven days a week.

Stewarts – Breakfast and lunch/supper are available here, and ice cream creations, open early-to- late every day.  Stewarts owns the farms that produce all their milk, eggs, ice cream and other dairy products.  They also produce their own baked goods.

In the Area:
The Lake Placid News and Adirondack Daily Enterprise publish a “North Country Dining Guide” that covers LP and Saranac Lake.

Our long time favorite place in Lake Placid is Cafe Rustica, serving great mediterranian food by Culinary Institute chefs.  Check out Liquids and Solids and Top of the Park for creative tapas.  Generations is doing good things with local food.  Interlaken is a very nice fine dining experience.

In Elizabethtown, the Deer’s Head Inn is a landmark, it has a new menu, a porch for summer and fireplace for winter.  It has recently been very nicely renovated and re-opened under new management.

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Places to Buy Food

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The Valley Grocery, Rivermede Farm, Maistar Farm on Airport Road and the Farmers’ Markets are great local food sources. Check out the other farms listed too – the local food movement is really grabbing a firm hold on the area.

valley-grocerThe Valley Grocery (518-576-4477), is a family run, full-line grocery store serving the area since 1969. There is a wide variety of products, the most famous being sausage made fresh by “Sausage King” Bruce Reed, who is known for dreaming up many different, delicious concoctions. Along with that, the Valley Grocery also has fresh fish, various cuts of meat, deli meat, fresh produce, maple products, craft beers, local cage free eggs, etc. You can also buy subs and sandwiches made to order, and occasionally, a “hot dog” cart where you will find Bruce serving up house made sausage and michigans. A laundry drop-off service and transfer station tickets are also available.  The bacon is to die for, don’t miss it.  Call in any large orders.

Rivermede Farm (518-576-2021) run by Rob Hastings now has its own retail location near Rt 73 and Beede Road. Rob also carries organic meats from other area farms. They have take out lunch items and dinners on Tuesday nights – call for details.

The Maistar Farm Stand, with eggs and whatever the garden is producing that day, is on Airport Road near the Marcy Field hiker parking area.  Maistar Farm’s eggs can be found in the Valley Grocery too.

Cedar Run Bakery and Market in Keene is well stocked with a large variety of take out food.  There is a nice selection of meats as well including vension, veal, lamb and other items you won’t see in the supermarket.  It’s wine and liquor shop is great.  It has coffee and fresh pastries every morning.  Bakery orders are welcome and full catering service is offered. There is also a large selection of specialty food products from crackers to sauces to condiments.

East Branch Organics, behind Stewarts, and the Ausable Inn in Keene Valley, also have wine and liquor shops

ADK Cafe has opened a market in a building just up the street in Keene.

The Brew Castle is a new store in Keene offering a collection of craft beers, hard ciders, artisanal foods, vintage bar ware, gifts and organic clothing.  It you are into craft beer, you really should stop in here.  That have take out food some evenings and soft pretzels from Montreal some mornings.  Call for details.

The farmers markets have great food.  It is important to go early for the best selection.  Check this Adirondack Harvest web site for a map to all the area’s farmer’s markets, shops, and roadside stands.  Click on the one near you for details.  Here are details on the Keene, Elizabethtown and Lake Placid Farmer’s Market.  The Keene market is on Marcy Field, on Sundays, from 9:30 until 2pm, from mid-June until Columbus Day.

DaCy Meadow Farm is in Westport and a special place for localvores from Keene because it is owned by a former Keene Central School Superintendent and her husband.  Check out the website for farmstand hours.

Asgaard Farm in AuSable Forks specializes in goat cheese, but also sells  eggs, pork, beef, chicken, chevon, and goat’s milk soap.  They have farm store hours on Thursdays 2pm-6pm and Saturdays 10am-1pm.  They have won awards for their goat cheese and you will see it in stores in the area.  They also attend the farmer’s markets.

Sugar House Creamery in Upper Jay offers local raw milk and wonderful cheese products.  It is also the site of a winter farmer’s market called the Snowy Grocer.

CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture and is a subscription to the production of a particular farm.  Essex Farm is a full-food (complete diet) farm feeding 220 members in Essex that uses work horses.  Several other nearby farms including Fledging Crow Farm, Juniper Hill, Mace Chasm Farm, are cooperating to offer complete diets, even a small brewery and chese maker, all in the same neighborhood.

Pray’s Family Farm in Keeseville, started in 1940, isn’t always organic but it is fresh and it is local. They have u-pick berry times as well.  www.LocalHarvest.Org is a website that can point you to all these places and more.

Dogwood Bread Company in Wadhams is definitely worth the trip to farm country.

The two reasonably close organic food stores are Green Goddess Natural Foods in Lake Placid and Nori’s Village Market in Saranac Lake.  The North Country Food Coop in Plattsburgh is another option.  An hour and 15 minutes away is the Middlebury Food Coop, worth a stop if you are in the area.

Stewarts is also worth a mention because it is open early-to-late and has good dairy products. They actually own their own farms in the region producing eggs, milk products, and all their ice cream. It is a ‘local food’ operation.  In addition it’s the only gas station, so you’ll be going there anyway.  There is an ATM in the shop and another one, next door on the far side the bank.  They have ice, and also grill gas.

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Grow Your Own

The Community Garden and the garden at the Keene Central School both offer ways to grow some of your own with a little help from your friends.

The Keene Community Garden is located on the south end of Marcy Field, across from the swimming hole.  The Town provides the space and the water.  The people using the space organize together to get the common work done.  Each person gets a 12×14 foot plot and you can grow your own with cooperative help to do things like watering when you are away for a few days.  Annual dues are $20 dollars per plot (you can have two).  This is a great alternative for new gardeners since there are people around to answer questions, and it is perfect for people who don’t have a nice sunny garden spot at their home in the forest.  If you would like a plot or have any questions, email Jim Herman.

The Keene Central School has a garden that students plant and maintain. The produce is used in the cafeteria, and it has a small dome greenhouse.  Students learn about healthy eating, gardening skills and the environment.  It has become locally famous.  NCPR did a radio story about it inMay 2009 which followed up on their first story in 2007.  This got started in 1995 as a composting program that is now Cornell Case Study.  In 2010 the cafeteria crossed a major threshold, eliminating all processed food from the menu.