It’s been a long winter, way too long (almost as long as I’ve been neglecting this site), and the natives are getting restless.  My taste buds and desire to travel, however, were tempted by a recent post on CNN about Tasting Your Way through 2014.

Winter, 2014, Lodi NJ

Winter, 2014, Lodi NJ

While most events aren’t based in the Northeast, I wondered ‘what’s a girl to do’ when the artic vortex has left us knee deep in Snowmaggedon?  So, I took matters into my own hands, hunting down these Northeast Jems to get us through the remains of winter:

The 6th Annual New York Beer Week, winding down this weekend, has a lot to offer, including a Beer Crawl through Williamsburg and the PSE&G Blackout, both taking place tomorrow, and an Urban Oyster Brewery Wine Tour on Sunday (say that 10 times fast).  We’re also smack dab in the middle of NYC’s Restaurant Week, where 3-course meals can be had for $25/lunch and $38/dinner, not bad for some of NY’s finest restaurants.

In Pennsylvania, there’s the 4th Annual Uncork the Alleghenies Wine Festival, held on March 8th which features more than 15 PA wineries.  The event also offers special VIP sessions with private wine tastings (tickets are limited, so get them while they last).   On April 11th & 12th, there’s the PA Herb Festival in York featuring ‘nationally known speakers, workshops and numerous vendors of plants, herbal crafts, products for the gardener, cook and crafter’ if that’s your thing (not telling the big man as he’ll be dragging us there, and Lord knows we already have more herbs than we know what to do with…).

In April, the fine folks in CT pay tribute to the American Liver Foundation with its Flavors of Connecticut event, held on April 1st in Plantsville.  The event ‘is a culinary experience that goes beyond the traditional gala and provides each table of attendees with a local chef who will prepare a multi-course dinner tableside.’

In my hometown of Boston, there’s the March 4  Taste of the South End
benefit for the AIDS Action Committee of MA that features more than 40 restaurants and is held at the Boston Center for the Arts.   There’s also the 25th Annual Boston Wine Festival held at the Boston Harbor Hotel through April which is the nation’s longest running wine and food pairing series hosted by either a winemaker or wine proprietor.

Yes, there's water/beaches in NH

Yes, there’s water/beaches in NH

In April, in NH, Share our Strength holds its Taste of the Nation Manchester event.  Guests will enjoy cuisine from more than 50 of New Hampshire’s top chefs paired with wines from 30 vineyards courtesy of 5 local wine distributors. Taste of the Nation is New Hampshire’s premier culinary event features guest mixologists, beer, specialty cocktails, and fabulous entertainment!

In Vermont, later in the season, one can enjoy The 16th Annual Stowe Wine & Food Classic, taking place June 13-15 at Trapp Family Lodge. As Maria just passed away, I’m sure it will be a celebration to remember.

Nothing to report for Maine, they’re still under a pile of snow; and I tend not to go much farther south than PA, so these will have to do for now.  This weekend, in honor of Mardi Gras, I’ll be making a King Cake; something I’ve always wanted to do, but have feared.  ‘Why,’ you ask.  Well, yeast intimidates me; but I enlisted the big man, aka Tony, my husband, to actual make the cake, so we’ll take some videos to provide you with a fun and entertaining way to herald in the Lenten season.

Oh, yes, you may see a wine/beer theme going on here…tends to be the trend in the Rivera household…may need to rename the blog.