All Over Albany Writes About Dinner on The Clearwater With Hudson Valley Wines
I'm a big fan of Daniel B. and his Fussy Little Blog and All Over Albany. Recently Daniel went to a dinner served aboard The Clearwater, and tasted several Hudson Valley wines along with the dinner and a sail. Here's a portion of the post, and a link to the rest. Cool story, Daniel!
Aboard the Sloop Clearwater for dinner
posted Jul 6, 2012
By Daniel B.
Most days I don't think about the Hudson River. I don't ponder its historical significance. I don't fret about the health of the fishery. Nor do I long to spend any time on its banks. And I'm not alone.
This is why more than forty years ago, folk singer Pete Seeger decided to build a boat. And not just any boat. His boat would be a 106-foot wooden replica of the ships that traversed the Hudson River 200 years ago. It would be called the sloop Clearwater, and its goal would be to bring people to the river.
The boat itself is stunning. It casts a striking figure on the water with its 108-foot mast and 3,000 square foot mainsail. This vessel would be a stunning museum piece, but it is in active use on the river, sailing as far south as New York City and as far north as Albany. The general public can even buy a ticket for a day sail. Money raised from such activities helps to fund the organization's core objectives of environmental education and advocacy.
Recently the Chefs Consortium, a regional group of local food advocates, organized a dinner for thirty people on board the Clearwater sailing out of Kingston.
So what's it like to eat the Hudson Valley's bounty while sailing on the Hudson?
First thing's first. You don't want to miss the boat. So you come early. Which is good, because there is a fine selection of regional cheeses and some light snacks before getting on board. Some of these include crostini with a garlic paste made from bulbs that were just dug up that morning.
Soon it's time to board, and the first thing you notice is the size of the Clearwater crew. They are everywhere. It takes a lot of people to run and maintain this boat. Which is not to say there isn't a role for the guests.
Upon boarding the captain gives a brief talk about safety and crewmember Jocelyn provides an overview of the sloop and the organization. Jocelyn is also a pretty good singer, and she teaches everyone a sea shanty to sing while those of able body hoist the sail. Getting the sail up the mast is no small feat. It's huge. And you have to lift the 65-foot wooden boom, too. Guests break into two teams, one on the port side (left) and the other on starboard (right).
But once the sail is up, there are rewards.
First the engine is cut, and all of a sudden things get awfully peaceful. The next thing you hear is the sound of sparkling wine being opened from America's oldest winery, Brotherhood in Washingtonville. All the wines were from New York and included chardonnay from Fox Run Vineyards, a white meritage from Lamoreaux Landing, pinot noir from Tousey Winery in Clermont, and a Bordeaux blend from Cereghino Smith. There was also some cassis from Clinton Vineyards for making Kir Royale.
Read the rest and many more fantastic pictures at: