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Inaugural Adirondack Wine and Food Festival delights the senses
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Inaugural Adirondack Wine and Food Festival delights the senses


LAKE GEORGE  The Adirondack Wine and Food Festival offered people a chance to try out new flavors — such as cinnamon infused whisky.

“It’s very strong. It’s kind of like a cinnamon stick on fire with alcohol, said Maureen Little of West Rutland, Vermont, who was trying products from the Lake George Distilling Co. along with her husband, Chris, on Saturday.

The Lake George Distilling Co. was one of the more than 30 state craft beverage producers and food vendors at the inaugural Adirondack Food and Wine Festival being held at the Charles R. Wood Festival Commons. The event continues from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Owner Robin McDougall said the company uses 100 percent New York-grown grains to make its whiskeys and moonshine from scratch. Turnout at the festival was strong, according to McDougall.

“It’s been really busy,” she said.

About a thousand people had gone through the grounds as of mid-afternoon Saturday, according to Adirondack Winery President Sasha Pardy, an organizer for the event. Nearly 2,100 tickets were sold.

Adirondack Festivals LLC, which is a company formed by Sasha and her husband, Michael Pardy, teamed up with the SUNY Adirondack culinary arts program to put on this event.

Pardy said that unlike other wine festivals that may be held at state fairs or in a more remote location, this event is right in town, where people can walk down the street to nearby restaurants and shops, or even go on a steamboat cruise.

“We knew this was the perfect location for this type of thing,” she said.

Jill Vogel, associate director of the SUNY Adirondack Foundation, said the weather was great. Despite overcast skies, it did not rain.

Feedback from vendors has been that the event is very well organized.

Melody Archambault of Glens Falls was sampling some of the wine selections from Halfmoon Cellar. She has a business called Traveling Vineyard.

“We do in-house wine tasting. I thought I’d come to check out the competition,” she said.

Alison Bauder of Halfmoon Cellar said “Saratoga Spirit,” was among its more popular selections.

Iva Menard of New Haven, Vermont, was sampling one of their wines.

Menard said she became a oenophile only last year. She liked the layout of this festival.

“It’s spread out; so even though it’s a lot of people, it’s not crowded.”

The wine-infused brownies with berries and chocolate ganash were a popular item at the SUNY Adirondack culinary table, according to student Kayla Skellie of Hudson Falls.

There were also displays of specialty items. JoAnne Rose of Sweet Rama’s Soap was showing off her soap made from goat milk.

“I do it like they did on ‘The Little House on the Prairie,’” she said. “It has to cure for four to six weeks to use.”

Aaron Flynn of Mayfield said it was a nice chance to hang out with friends and try out beer, wine and food.

Mia Jeffreys of Saratoga Springs and her boyfriend were staying at a nearby hotel and decided to check out the festival.

“This is the perfect thing to do when the weather is cloudy,” she said.

You can read Michael Goot’s blog “A Time to Learn” at or his updates on Twitter at


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