Comfort FoodStaff | April 15, 2016 | Comment
After the culinary adventures of summer run their course, we rely on more familiar flavors to sustain us during the harsher seasons. Comfort food is deeply personal and therefore challenging to define. For most, it comes down to nostalgia. At home, comfort food needs to be simple and easy to prepare, but when you’re visiting the Valley, you get to leave the question of complexity to our renowned chefs. Sit back, relax, and enjoy a gustatory blast to the past.
Elephant Wine and Tapas Bar in Kingston conjures comfort through its intimate railroad storefront atmosphere, richly satisfying plates, and curated wine list. It’s a festive community clubhouse for the under-50 set. Try their duck two ways with French lentils or the blood sausage dumplings in ginger broth. For a comforting meal built around beer, stop by Mill House Brewing Company in Poughkeepsie. This gastropub and craft brewery serves elevated pub fare like Moroccan-spiced lamb ribs and pale ale & cheddar brats in a warm brick tavern complete with wrought-iron lighting and tufted booths.
An Art Deco diamond in the rough, Maybelle’s in Catskill offers refined comfort in the form of roasted chicken, grilled ribeye with blue cheese butter, and shrimp with yellow grits. Sides like pureed sunchokes with vanilla elevate their familiar flavors. Conscious Fork in Warwick hits the spot for vegans seeking satisfaction. A café-mod dining room and nutrient-rich menu make this the place to enjoy a hearty bowl of brown rice, five-spice kale, baked tofu, and sesame carrots topped with ginger tamari dressing.
Brush up on your sweet tooth at one of the region’s many specialty bakeries and sweet shops. For the most captivating cupcakes in the Hudson Valley, head over to Moxie Cupcakes in New Paltz, where irresistible homemade baked goods collide with clever, pun-filled names. Across the river in Poughkeepsie, The Pastry Garden whips up every imaginable craving, from pies to cakes, danish to tortes, plus a variety of glutenfree, dairy-free, and sugar-free options.