• Laura Ventresco

Mountain to Table: Adirondack High Peaks Edition

Part 2 of the birthday yurt weekend continues...

Peaks: Porter (Keene, NY)

Miles: 5.6

Hike Date: 03/24/2018

Mountain to Table (Post Hike Eats):

Lisa G's, Big Slide Brewery, Adirondack Mountain Coffee Cafe, ADK Market

Summit of Porter Mtn

In case you missed the first part of the blog post- It was my birthday! & We rented this gorgeous yurt, on a farm, up in the mountains of New York. Check out my first post for details on the area and a Yurt tour!

Now to my glorious day in the mountains.

There are so many trails and hiking spots up here, it's basically my dream come true. & Since I don't live up here, and get to hike the High Peaks all the time, it's completely brand new, uncharted mountain territory for me. The food was also FANTASTIC everywhere we went, so this is one Mountain to Table post you'll want to copy and come see for yourself! Similar to New Hampshire's "48 White Mountains above 4000 Ft" list, New York has a list of 46 High Peaks. This was # 3/46 for me!

I'm here to be your guide and point out some major differences between hiking in New Hampshire and New York. For one- when hiking in New York they have these trail registers, where you sign into the mountain at the start of your hike, and sign out when you make it out safely. I'm not positive if every high peak has these, but all the ones I've done so far have started with this at the base. It's very simple to complete- just write your name and how many people are in your party. Some hikers who finished just before us said they counted 76 hikers for the day! Crazy.

Another HUGE difference if you are a dog owner- is that New York has a leash law. Right at the start of this hike there is a sign indicating it. Although we had brought Blaze's e-collar, we did follow the rules and keep him leashed. (I promise guys, sometimes I'm not a rebel!)

As we began our hike, John and I were both feeling the effects of all that birthday whiskey we drank the night before. Oops. But totally worth it. We kept on hydrating and hiking on until we eventually found a groove. The weather forecast was not the greatest for this Saturday- cloudy all day, light snow flurries, I worried we might not have views. After taking the prior 3 weekends off from hiking, it felt amazing to get back out on the trail with my doggins and John.

I really needed this weekend away. It's truly powerful what an extra day off, adventures and fresh air can do for the mind and body. Before this weekend I felt little to no motivation at work. Or as I like to call it- "My give-a-f*ck-ometer is broken." Which is usually fine, but things like my job that I need to pay my bills (more importantly to fund said adventures).. I have to be able to at least pretend, and put effort in at the office. This weekend away was everything I needed to reset. It was one of the most magical weekends ever, and I feel really full returning. Just completely satisfied, refreshed, and ready to kick ass at life again.

The weather even decided to work out in my favor for our hike. Some blue skies! Not a single snowflake. And views. Ohhhh my goodness, the Adirondack mountain views. They're extra pretty. & I have gotten so familiar with NH's mountains at this point, I'm very appreciate to shake things up and explore in this other region. New views, my friends.

After hiking for a bit you will come to a junction. Left brings you to Cascade Mountain, and right brings you to Porter. They are both on the High Peaks list.

Cool little "False Summit" ledge we stopped to check out before continuing towards the real summit

Blaze and Luna's Close ups

The summit was spectacular! Little to no wind meant that we could sit and eat our sandwiches comfortably. We definitely picked the right peak as we got to enjoy the top all to our ourselves, and looking across the way at Cascade, you could see that's where most of the hikers ended up.

View of hikers on Cascade from Porter

Testing out my mini-tripod for our group shot

Such a great hike. It's an easy one, great views, and not too many miles. But as always, we worked up an appetite and had been dreaming up what we wanted as our Mountain to Table post hike dinner. I actually have a few different places to recommend to you guys since we spent the whole weekend up here.

From Mountain to Table

Jay, Keene, and Lake Placid New York Area

I'm not sure what it is about New York, but every meal we had here was delicious! Maybe it's because all these restaurants are local, family owned, and not chain restaurants? Idk for sure the secret to the food magic, but I'm not mad.

Lisa G's

You can already tell it's good because the line of cars outside. As busy as it looked, we were seated immediately! The service was fast, our waitress was the sweetest human ever! I just adored her. At least 3 different servers though were always bringing drinks, picking up dishes, it felt like a team effort from the staff and it truly resulted in phenomenal customer service.


John ordered a Whiskey Ginger- it came in a large sized glass & they were not shy on the whiskey. Very well priced too! I can see why the locals would love it here.

I ordered the "Salty Ricardo" which consisted of Casamigos Tequila, Lime Juice, Simple, Cucumber Water, Salt. Really, really good!

Appetizer: Cheese Treat. Spicy Feta cheese served with grilled bread. YUMMMYYYY. The fresh arugula with it added such an amazing fresh bite to it.

My Dinner: Seared Ahi Tuna topped with hoisen sauce (cooked perfectly!) With a side of salad and avocado.

John's Dinner: Korean Beef served over coconut rice and black beans. Topped with watermelon slaw. Side of wasabi for dipping. This was SUPER yummy I was eating it off his plate and I already want to eat it again.

Big Slide Brewery

Always a favorite to check out when I am visiting up here. One of the High Peaks is "Big Slide Mountain" which this brewery is named after. Farm to Table food, & a really cool atmosphere in here. Homemade ice cream. Kitchen is at the back of the brewery and visible so you can eye all those tasty plates as they come out! Most of the time when I think of a brewery... I'm not thinking of really good food. You think pretzels. Very basic bar food. This, is the exception.

Order a flight to sample their different beers. MAKE SURE you get Giant IPA as one of them, it's their most well known beer and our favorite one. I tried a beverage called a "Plum Sour", it was fantastic and I felt like I was eating a real plum with that little burst of sour/tartness. John tried and also loved it.

We started with Tater Tot Poutine... we almost licked the bowl clean.

My Dinner:

NOT MUSHROOM FOR ANYTHING ELSE: Herb Creme Fraiche Base, Asgaard Farm Chevre, Shredded Mozzarella, Assorted Mushrooms, Balsamic Vinegar Syrup Drizzle

John's Dinner:

OPEN SESAME NOODLES: Ramen Noodles, Stir Fried Carrot, Broccoli, Green Onion And Edamame, Peanut Sauce, Sesame Seed

We left very happy and content.

Adirondack Mountain Coffee Cafe

This is a pretty new establishment. We pulled in on a whim looking for breakfast sandwiches on our way to hike. Although it is a sit down cozy kinda place, they took our order for sandwiches. Came out super fast! Really good, and really really affordably priced. We only paid $11 for 2 breakfast sandwiches and a coffee.

It was actually SO good, that we came back and had breakfast here the next day. You should always be properly fueled with coffee and good eats before a long journey home. We fell in love with their mugs and their coffee. We devoured our plates clean. Another delicious meal in upstate New York.

Yes.. I was coloring, obviously.

You can also buy their coffee and these adorable mugs right online, and get some 'Adirondack Magic' shipped right to your house! But I would recommend you make the drive up here... it's worth it.

Thanks so much for reading, I hope you liked the blog tour around upstate New York and that I could inspire a future adventure for you! If you haven't yet, also check out my prior post of our lodging for the weekend- a beautiful yurt on a secluded farm.

- Laura the Explorer

I would love to hear about a favorite town or place that you guys have for future adventures!

Comment below where I should head next...

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