As I write this letter, The Valley Table is wrapping up another spring restaurant week. For the first time, it occurred in actual springlike weather, taking place in mid-May, rather than mid-March. The later date allowed restaurants to have more time to regroup and accommodate more out outdoor diners, and it gave patrons more time to adjust to dining out again. By all accounts, it was a successful two weeks, with more than half of the restaurants returning as participants.
The events surrounding HVRW are always a good time for the editorial team, featuring fun events hosting by our outstanding marketing department. This year's kickoff event at City Winery Hudson Valley was billed as a "celebration if the Hudson Valley's culinary scene." As invited guests sipped and sampled fare from local producers and purveyors, and attended live demonstrations, the word "celebrate" never rang truer. The last time we had all been together was in March 2020, days before shutdowns began, when fist-bumping was a thing and masks were not. This year, most of us were vaccinated, yet still wearing masks, and there was a real sense of relief and joy in the air. It was also Today Media's first live event in more than a year, and boy, did it feel great to be back out again and using all of our senses-- tasting, smelling, and touching all of the products -- instead of just seeing faces on Zoom.
Another more intimate event took place on the terrace of Aroma Osteria in Wappingers Falls. It was a sit-down dinner for 10 that was filled with delicious food and wine, lots of stories, and laughs -- and the best part of all, those people weren't even my family!
Here's to a summer filled with all of those things, including time with your loved ones.