Over the Fourth of July weekend Bethany and I had the opportunity to book a last minute mini vacation to the Finger Lakes region of New York. The Finger Lakes have long been known for its multitude of wineries, and more recently breweries, which surround the lakes.
Apparently, the valleys around the lakes provide an ideal environment for both grapes and hops, or so I’ve been told. It was only natural that along these well-worn wine trails that craft breweries would pop up to serve the throngs of booze-loving tourists who thirsted for something other than yet another Riesling.
As booze-loving tourists ourselves we have been to the Finger Lakes a few times before and we love the area for its beautiful lakes, captivating sunsets, goat farms and, of course, craft breweries. There is no shortage of quaint inns and luxurious B&B’s to stay at…unless of course you try to book a trip the day before a long 4th of July weekend. We could not find rooms at any of our usual spots, so we turned to Airbnb. This was the first time we used Airbnb, so we were a little cautious, but we eventually found a beautiful alpaca farm not too far outside of Ithaca with a room available. The farm had no reviews on Airbnb so we bombarded the poor owner with questions about her rental history and moral character in an effort to ascertain the risk of being murdered in our sleep. Despite a vague sense that we would, in fact, be murdered in our sleep, we booked the place and made our way late Friday evening.
When we arrived at dusk we found a charming wood and stone building, gorgeous garden, a pond, alpacas and peacocks. The owner showed us to our garden house lodging with canopy bed and seriously relaxing outdoor living room drenched in pillows and cushions were Bethany and I spent our mornings reading and evenings enjoying our Troegs Nimble Giant…or Giant Nimble…Giant Nipple… or Nipple Giant depending on how many Bethany has had (check out our Nimble Giant review here!).
The Giant Nipple isn’t all we drank last weekend, however. As always, we returned to some of our favorite Finger Lakes breweries (see our earlier post on Two Goats Brewery) and scoured the area for new ones that always seem to be popping up which we will be reviewing in a future post. In our travels we stopped at the Ithaca Farmers Market, which is great little destination for fresh produce, meat, and hot meals; however, I will warn you to ride your bike or walk if you can because traffic is a mess on Saturday mornings.
We also stopped at one of our favorite places, The Lively Run goat dairy where you can buy cheese and have your fingers and shirt cuffs nibbled by silly goats that will also let you pet them a little. They have a cheese tasting for just a few bucks and some amazing cheesecakes and truffles.
Check out our experiences visiting the breweries we toured on our trip:
Mike and Bethany
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