An Adirondack Culinary Tale: Part One

Even if you're favorite Adirondack activity is hiking, kayaking, camping, skiing, snowboarding or shopping, the restaurant experience is what completes any visit to the Adirondacks.

Paul Sorgule

As the sun begins to rise over the majestic Adirondack High Peaks, countless restaurant kitchens throughout the region are invariably abuzz with activity. From the smell of Oscar's Smokehouse Maple Bacon crackling on the stove, to the taste of crispy home-fried potatoes from Tucker Farms in Gabriel's, and pastries pulled from ovens that have been working since well before dawn – smell, touch, and taste the incredible culinary signature of the Adirondacks.

Of course, the Adirondacks are known for their incredible beauty and world-class outdoor activities, but what many may not realize is the presence of an exciting food culture within the Blue Line.

...smell, touch, and taste the incredible culinary signature of the Adirondacks.

Adirondack Culinary Recap

Since the late 1800's, when hotels like the Ausable Club, Paul Smith's Hotel, and the Lake Placid Club were thriving, it has been the hospitality and food of the Adirondacks that has brought visitors back time and again.

Behind the swinging doors of every restaurant is a family of cooks whose lives are focused on the ingredients and preparations that will please a wide array of visitors. Many of these aspiring chefs earned their "kitchen legs" at restaurants in the Adirondacks, before moving on to cooking positions in some of the country's best restaurants. As a result, the culinary influence of the Adirondack comfort food movement can be experienced from New York City to San Francisco.

Thankfully, some cooks stayed in the Adirondacks, putting down roots and opening restaurants that offer signature cuisine prepared and presented with Adirondack flair.

Destination Relais & Chateau dining, home style Farm-to-Table, café's and cantina's with ethnic food interpretations, and even deep woods-style hunters' havens, grace the main streets of villages and tucked away great camps from Lake Placid to Lake George. The Park is even home to one of America's premier culinary arts and hospitality colleges.

If you are considering a vacation that feeds your passion for food, wine and craft beers while providing the most spectacular connections with nature, visit the Adirondacks. You won't go hungry.

Follow us and learn about the food characters in the Park, the diversity of food choices, incredible farmers, cheese makers, butchers, bakers, cooks, and chefs. Follow Paul's blog: and check out  "An Adirondack Culinary Tale: Part Two" and "An Adirondack Culinary Tale: Part Three"

Photos courtesy of Kristin Parker Photography and Curtiss Hemm. 

About the Author …
Paul Sorgule
Paul Sorgule is a seasoned veteran of the food business and the current president of Harvest America Ventures, a consulting and training firm for the restaurant industry. He lives in Saranac Lake with his wife, Sharon, where they raised three kids.
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With seven distinct regions of wineries, craft breweries, dairy farms and agriculture that feed the culinary pipeline, your appetite will beckon you to return.
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