What Is Distinctive And Authentic To The Character Of The Region
In New York, Awakening the Ski Industry’s Sleeping Giant
By Bill Pennington, NY Times, Published: March 12, 2009
“Across the street from the closed sporting-goods store, a new restaurant, barVino, has opened. BarVino occupies a former grocery store, and its owner, Michael Bowers, became the third person on the building’s deed since it was built in 1920. The restaurant serves 32 wines by the glass (100 wines altogether), as well as 61 different beers. The clientele at bar Vino during a visit earlier this winter was a mix of Gore Mountain employees and second-home owners. “
Wednesday, April 06, 2011
High Peaks Happy Hour: barVino in North Creek
By Kim Ladd and Pam Ladd
It didn't quite feel like spring when we left Warrensburg on what started as a breezy, sunny day, but it did hold promise that winter was loosening its grip. It seems whenever we mention our book project, barVino in North Creek is suggested. We were off to find out what all the buzz was about.
A visual sweep as we walked in immediately registered calm; high ceilings, clean simple lines, and a sense of order and unpretentious sophistication. In real life, Kim is a photographer so was naturally drawn to the framed black-and-white photographs hanging on the warm adobe-hued walls, this month's gallery exhibit. barVino regularly graces its walls with local artists' works, adding further classiness to the place. Pam's attention was drawn to the craftsmanship of the decor, both modern and classic, with a concrete bar counter and sturdy barstools (all matching, of course) of wood and padded fabric seats.
The lighting was just right to show off the overall sleekness, eyes drawn upwards to the high ceiling and classic tin cornices, all painted green. The tin crown molding was the only hint that the building wasn't new. There were several ceiling fans that were large but not gaudy. We could have been sitting in a trendy bistro on Boston's Newbury Street.
The page-and-a-half-long beer menu boasted a nearly global selection of bottled and draft beers. Draft beer featured Guinness and an assortment of craft brews from Davidson Brothers, Adirondack Brewery, and Dogfish Head. The endless bottled list? Lagers and ales and wheats and belgians and stouts and porters, oh my! Kim ordered a Davidson's Ctrl-Alt-Del. The color a warm reddish brown, the aroma a little wheaty, it had a slightly bitter flavor with a hint of nuttiness.
The bartender, Janelle, was helpful in suggesting a white wine from the specials board after I shared my preferences regarding sweetness and dryness with her. We were under the impression that it was strictly a wine bar, and stand corrected. Not to be outdone, and it is barVino after all, the five page wine list requires a passport. Selections from Italy, Spain, France, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, Chile and California in red (55 bottled; 16 by the glass), rose, port, white, dessert, and champagne by the glass or bottle. You can download PDF's of barVino's menus online.
A review isn't complete without a trip to the restroom which divulged more surprises. In the hallway hung an eclectic collection of antique mirrors. The oak drysink in the ladies room held baskets of individual hand towels and a framed print on the wall depicted an old woman gathering wood.
barVino, North Creek, where local simplicity meets urban chic.
Kim and Pam Ladd's book, Happy Hour in the High Peaks, is currently in the research stage. Together they visit pubs, bars and taverns with the goal of selecting the top 46 bars in the Adirondack Park. They regularly report their findings here at the Almanack and at their own blog.
My family and I have been traveling to our cabin in nearby North River for over 50 years. As noted in our memoir Adirondack Cabin Stories,(see nomination page) "back in the day" our favorite haunt in North Creek was Smiths, now Andies. However,since the recent revitilization of North Creek many new business have emerged. The connection of Gore Mountain with the Ski Bowl will be a stimulas to the community. One of the bright spots in Town is barVino. My family, friends and I stop whenever we are in Town. I know that the owner Michael Bowers has been a key advocate in this revitilization. I thank him and his family co-partners for caring enough to work to improve one of my favorite Towns.
John Henningson - Contributor / Nominator