Chesterfield, New Hampshire
September 19th, 2012 by Judy Hueber
Sunrise at Spofford Lake, Chesterfield, NH
Spofford Lake is just 3 miles away from our Romantic New Hampshire Bed and Breakfast and this favorite among New Hampshire lakes holds a special place in the hearts of many people who have whiled away long lazy summer days at Ware’s Grove Beach. Spofford is not the biggest lake in New Hampshire, but it is one of the prettiest, and it is situated just off of Route 9 in the village of Spofford. The lake has a circumference of about 6 miles and covers 1.1 square miles. Ware’s Grove is a sandy beach on the south side of the lake and is open to the public for swimming, with a life guard on duty from Memorial Day until Labor Day. There are picnic tables, grills, and bathrooms for the public.
Spofford Lake also has a boat ramp for people who want to go boating in motor boats. The boat ramp is on the south side of the lake. Come early, the parking is very limited! Or, bring your kayak or canoe and explore the lake with paddle power. One of our favorite things to do when our kids were little was to canoe over to Pierce’s Island, in the middle of the lake but still a very short paddle. The kids would run around the paths on the island and we would enjoy a picnic lunch on the rocks on the shoreline.
Spofford Lake is a beautiful place to enjoy the fall foliage, with the beautiful colors of the leaves on the tree-lined hills surrounding the lake reflected in the water. Put it on your list for this year’s foliage trip!
January 13th, 2012 by Judy Hueber
It seems that winter has finally arrived in Southern New Hampshire and Vermont! Yesterday’s snowstorm dropped 6 inches of fluffy snow on our barren landscape, making everything look better. Now we have more options for outdoor play this weekend! Previously we were able to hike in the woods around our New Hampshire Bed and Breakfast, just like it was still November, or go ice-skating on ice that had never had snow on it. That was pretty great!
This weekend, we can snowshoe in Pisgah Park, Friedsam Forest or the Madame Sherri Forest in Chesterfield, and have the woods all to ourselves. The snow has covered the trees and made the forest into a winter wonderland that sparkles all around in the sunshine.
For cross-country skiing, I would suggest the ski center at Grafton Ponds in Grafton, Vermont. Grafton Ponds has been making snow on its lower loop all season and has been a popular place for all of the local racers to go to train. Now they have snow in the woods and plenty of trails open. They also have a ski shop for rentals and a lodge where you can enjoy a cup of hot cocoa. You can check their Facebook page for info on the ski conditions.
Downhill skiers have of course also benefited from the new snow. The downhill ski areas have been making snow and this new snow will only improve conditions. The ski areas closest to our New Hampshire Luxury Inn are Mount Snow, Stratton, Bromley and Killington, all about an hour’s drive.
October 12th, 2011 by Judy Hueber
Yesterday, I escaped for a quick foliage getaway between breakfast and lunch. It was sunny and crisp, with morning fog from the river burning off quickly. My friends picked me up, with dogs in tow, for a hike up Putney Mountain. We drove up Route 5, enjoying the beautiful colors of the leaves along the roadside, into the village of Putney, and then out to the Putney School and to the Putney Mountain Trail Head.
There was just one car in the parking lot, a great sign for a quiet walk in the woods. We hiked up the well-marked trail, about a mile, to the lookout area at the top of the Mountain. There were 2 women sitting in chairs, using binoculars to look for birds. They were up there for the day, basking in the sunshine, counting birds for the Putney Mountain bird count. We spent a few minutes at the top, figuring out which mountains were which to the East and West. We could see Mount Monadnock in New Hampshire, and in Vermont we had a clear view of Mount Snow, Haystack, Stratton, and Bromley. The hills were gorgeous shades of red, yellow and orange mixed with the dark green of the evergreens.
After the quick downhill hike, we retired to Green Mountain Orchard just past the Putney School, for homemade cinnamon and sugar donuts and apple cider. If we had wanted to, we could have walked into the orchard and picked several varieties of apples to take home. It was tempting, especially when I saw the 6 apple pies that they had just taken out of the oven! I love making apple pies in October! It was just great to be out in the fresh air on a beautiful warm autumn day, enjoying the scenery with friends before heading back to Chesterfield Inn.
September 14th, 2011 by Judy Hueber
Gaines Farm Corn Maze
It seems that Summer is officially over and Fall has arrived at Chesterfield Inn! I know this because the Gaines Farm Corn Maze opens this Saturday. For those of you who haven’t ever experienced it, a corn maze is a maze cut through the corn stalks in a corn field, with dead ends, winding paths, and, finally a way out. The challenge is to make your way through the maze without getting lost, and finding your way out on the other side!
I grew up on a dairy farm in Hardwick, Massachusetts, and as children we used to play in the cornfields. We never had anything as sophisticated as a corn maze, but we would play between the rows, in our own little world. You see, the corn stalks grew over 7 feet tall, so that once you entered the cornfield no one on the outside of the field could see you. It was perfect for us and we spent hours playing games between the giant rows of corn.
The Gaines Farm corn maze covers 7 acres of cornfield, and the corn has grown to heights of up to 10 feet. The pattern of the maze, as you can see here, is a tribute to the 250th anniversary of the town of Guilford, Vermont, which is about 20 minutes drive from our New Hampshire Bed and Breakfast. The corn maze opens this Saturday, September 17 and will be open weekends until October 30. Admission to the maze is $7 and includes entrance to the baby animal barn, pumpkin bowling, and many other activities. Fun for kids of all ages!
July 23rd, 2011 by Judy Hueber
We have a new beer on the Chesterfield Inn beer list: Smuttynose India Pale Ale. Smuttynose Brewing Co is located in Portsmouth, New Hampshire where they began making beer in 1994. The company is named for Smuttynose Island, which is one in a group of nine islands that lay off the coast of Portsmouth. The company was founded by the owners of the Portsmouth Brewery and the Northampton Brewery, in Northampton, Massachusetts (a nice place to have a beer and a bite to eat and located just 45 minutes from our West Chesterfield B&B.)
Shoals Pale Ale was the first beer that was made by Smuttynose back in 1994, and it was a great start! The India Pale Ale is a more recent offering, which is very “hoppy” and is unfiltered.
This India Pale Ale won a gold medal as “Best American Beer” at the Great British Beer Festival in 2004. Its characteristics include golden color, light body and crisp flavor. This is the perfect drink for the hot summer days of July. Come sit under an umbrella on the back terrace at our New Hampshire Inn and sip a Smuttynose IPA!
June 15th, 2011 by Judy Hueber
We love gardens at Chesterfield Inn and we’d like to share about one of our favorites! One of the hidden jewels of Windham County in Southern Vermont is Olallie Daylily Gardens. Olallie’s is in South Newfane, which is a lovely little town off of well traveled Route 30. When you turn off of Route 30 and meander off into the web of country roads that lead to South Newfane, you can feel the hustle and bustle fall away. Olallie’s is off of Williamsville Road, on Augur Hill Road, on the left after the South Newfane Country Store.
The lilies are grown on a third generation organic farm and fill 40 display beds in a 6 acre field. The Darrow family owns the farm and it is managed by Christopher Darrow, his children and his mother, Ellen. They continue the work of Christopher’s grandfather, George Darrow, who began collecting and hybridizing day lilies in 1957. Lilies are very hardy plants and come in many sizes and colors. Olallie has over 2,500 varieties of day lilies, in all colors, that bloom during the months of June, July, and August.
Olallie also has irises, field grown perennials, unusual hostas, shrubs and trees, and pick your own blueberries. During June they are having a Siberian iris and field grown perennial sale that will go until June 26. The farm is a great place to just wander, enjoying the gorgeous blooms and quiet surroundings. They even have picnic tables and benches with market umbrellas if you’d like to bring a picnic to enjoy after you have seen the flowers.
We hope that you have an opportunity to visit this beautiful farm during your stay at our New Hampshire B&B!
May 26th, 2011 by Judy Hueber
Looking for a fun getaway to surprise the special man in your life? Pack him up and surprise him with a night or two away at Chesterfield Inn. The area surrounding our New Hampshire Inn & Restaurant has lots to offer in the way of “guy” activities: from golf to mountain biking to kayaking to a night at the local pub!
You can start the day with a hearty breakfast in our sunny dining room. Our B&B offers everything from yogurt and granola to pancakes, omelettes, home fries, and sausage to make sure he won’t be able to leave hungry! And don’t forget the homemade muffins and scones!
Then off for a round of golf at one of our local golf courses. You can book our Special Discount at Brattleboro Country Club in nearby Brattleboro, VT or head to Crumpin Fox in Bernardston, MA, Hooper Golf Course in Walpole, NH, or Bretwood in Keene, NH. All of these courses offer unique challenges and extensive natural beauty.
In the afternoon, grab your hiking boots or mountain bikes and head into Pisgah State Park right here in Chesterfield. The terrain is vast (13,000 acres) and the trails well maintained with lots of ups and downs. This park is never crowded and remains one of the best kept secrets about this corner of New Hampshire.
After all this activity, you’ll need a shower and a nap back in your comfy room at the inn. In the early evening head over to McNeill’s Brewery in Brattleboro to sample some locally made beers. Brattleboro also boasts the Flat Street Brew Pub featuring Berkshire Brewing Company beers made in nearby Deerfield, MA.
After a relaxing evening drink, head back to the inn for a romantic dinner out on our terrace. He will definitely love the delicious rack of lamb or savory beef tenderloin, and a bottle of Catena Malbec from our wine list is sure to please. Retire to your room to enjoy the fireplace or a soak in your 2 person Jacuzzi. You’ll both sleep well after such an action packed day!
May 18th, 2011 by Judy Hueber
Now that the snow has finally melted, golf season has begun in Northern New England. There are several beautiful public golf courses within a 20 minute drive from the Chesterfield Inn and the closest is the Brattleboro Country Club in Brattleboro, VT. In partnership with the Brattleboro Country Club, the Chesterfield Inn is offering $20 off of an 18 hole round of golf at the club.
The course is beautifully maintained and offers challenges for beginners and experienced players alike, with short and long holes, elevated tee shots, and lots of hills to walk or ride up and down in your golf cart. The course is surrounded by the rolling hills of Southern Vermont, and has many places to sit and enjoy the beauty of the woods bordering the course. The club also has two practice greens and a large driving range if you’d like to warm up before your round.
So pack up your golf clubs and enjoy a relaxing weekend, golfing in the daytime, and returning to our luxurious New Hampshire Inn after a great round, to relax and enjoy dinner on our terrace.
May 3rd, 2011 by Judy Hueber
If you’re interested in eating healthy local foods, and supporting the farmers who produce that food, or if you just like a parade with lots of cute animals, come to Brattleboro the first weekend of June from the 3rd through the 5th for the annual Strolling of the Heifers. This annual event, now celebrating its 10th anniversary, has been delighting guests of our New Hampshire B&B for years and is not to be missed!
There are many events planned for the weekend, but the centerpiece is “the Stroll”, a parade held on Saturday morning, which features about 100 cows and heifers, as well as other farm animals, farm machinery, bands, and local organizations. The parade ends at the Brattleboro Common, where you can enjoy samples of local foods and products, maybe pet a heifer or two, or watch a politician try to milk a cow.
This year, the “Stroll” is preceded by the Slow Living Summit, which will feature distinguished speakers who are all interested in, and striving for, a sustainable future. The Slow Living Summit will take place from June 1st – 3rd in conjunction with Marlboro College and the School for International Training.
So mark your calendars, book a stay at our romantic New Hampshire Bed and Breakfast in nearby Chesterfield, and come to Brattleboro for the weekend to enjoy all of the various activities involved with the Strolling of the Heifers!
*All Photos courtesy of The Strolling of the Heifers Parade & Festival
March 23rd, 2011 by Judy Hueber
Local Maple Syrup
After a long winter with snowstorm after snowstorm, spring has finally started to arrive at our Inn in New Hampshire. The daytime temperatures are now above freezing, most days, with temperatures dipping below freezing at night. It’s perfect “sugaring” weather! Maple sugaring is what our local farmers call the process of collecting the sap from our sugar maple trees and boiling it into maple syrup. As you drive along the back roads near our romantic northern New England B&B, you can see the local “sugar houses” with steam billowing out into the cold air as the sap is boiled down into maple syrup. One of my favorite things to do is top stop at a sugar house when they’re boiling and ask for a taste of the fresh maple syrup. It’s delicious!
All of this “sugaring” inspires us to use maple syrup in our cooking and the following Maple Cheesecake is one of our favorites!
2 cups ground graham crackers
3 T. sugar
1/2 t. cinnamon
6 T. melted butter
3 8-ounce pkgs. cream cheese at room temperature
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
3 T. flour
1/4 t. salt
1 c. reduced maple syrup (1 cup maple syrup, simmered 4 minutes to reduce and concentrate flavor)
2/3 cup sour cream
2 T. vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Add melted butter and stir until crumbs are evenly moistened. Wrap outside of 9 inch spring form pan in aluminum foil so that the base and sides are covered and sealed. Press crumb mixture into bottom and about 2 inches up the sides of the pan. Bake about 10 minutes. Cool on rack. For filling, beat cream cheese with electric mixer with paddle until very smooth. Add brown sugar, flour and salt. Beat until blended and smooth. Add reduced syrup, sour cream and vanilla. Beat until blended. Add eggs, 2 at a time, and beat just until well blended after each addition. Tap bowl on counter several times to release any air bubbles. Pour filling into cooled crust. Bake cake in a water bath ( pan of warm water about 1 inch up the sides of the pan) for 1 and a half hours. Turn oven off, open door a few inches and let the cake sit in the oven for an hour. Remove from oven and water bath and allow to cool on a rack. Serve with fresh berries.