Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Moosewood and Other Fun in Ithaca

Back before the December holidays, John and I drove up to Ithaca, NY, for a tiny getaway. Good thing we bought the Subaru because the drive up there in the sleet and snow was harrowing, to say the least. But, the following day, although the sky was still gray (portending more snow), the snow blanket made everything all the more beautiful.

During the time I had to myself, I vowed I would lunch at Moosewood Restaurant, home to some of my favorite cookbooks. The place did not disappoint me. Because the menu changes every day, I asked my server if I could save mine, and I'm glad I did because I didn't know I'd wait this long to share the story with you.

When I arrived at the restaurant, I was seated right away. It tough to choose between a steaming fragrant soup or a salad, but since I'd decided on an entree, I would have a salad anyway. I selected a fresh, tangy lemon-tahini dressing for my salad topper. It was a delightful dish of organic greens, olives, tomatoes and carrots.

For the entree, I had a mushroom pecan tofu burger. It was topped with the most wonderful, savory caramelized onions and sharp cheddar cheese. It was easily the best tofu burger I've ever tasted.

The service was speedy and attentive, and the atmosphere was just what you'd expect from a college-town vegetarian restaurant -- friendly and lively.

Prior to lunch, I had time to explore the campus of Cornell a tiny bit. Even in the dead of winter, it's a very pretty place. Probably my favorite place was the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art.

It's an interesting building with a wide range of art on every floor, except the 3rd and 4th floors, to which the public has no access. However, there's lots to see from the basement up to the top floor, which has some spectacular views on all sides.

It was nice to be able to walk around the Asian art, turn the corner, and see this

Here's another view

Here you can see one of the region's famous finger lakes in the distance (not a very far distance, actually).

Taking that short trip to upstate NY made me think once again how lucky we are to have so many interesting places to see just a few hours away. Oh, and so many great places to eat!

Have you ever been to Moosewood, or another place that spawned a cookbook (or two) that you use on a regular basis?


Ricki said...

Wow, this brought back memories of our visit out there a few years ago! Great photo of the Moosewood, too.

Deb Schiff said...

Thanks, Ricki.

I would have loved to have snapped some photos of the food at Moosewood, but there were so many people there and it would have been too conspicuous. :)