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Chef Rob Handel Returns to Heather Ridge Farm!

Chef Rob Handel Returns to Heather Ridge Farm!

Our favorite chef in the Catskills, Rob Handel, is making a triumphant return to Heather Ridge Farm! He spent the summer focusing on seafood at Fin in Guiderland but as of October 6, 2018, he’ll be coming back home to the cafe that we love the most.

Rob Handel and Carol Clement at Heather Ridge Farm Bee’s Knees Cafe

“I’m thrilled he’s coming back,” says farm and cafe owner Carol Clement. “I feel like the band is getting together again. My team is whole again.”

The duo has been stirring up some new ideas, which Rob hints at in his newsletter: “We're planning a number of exciting events over the next couple of months. Some are familiar, like the Fried Chicken Picnic (a runner up for a Capital Region Living “Bestie” Award) and the Supper Club, and others might be new (hint—keep an eye out for us out and about at some of your favorite local haunts!)” Rob is also booking cooking classes throughout the fall and winter, and you can contact him for more info.

In celebration of the good news, here are some photos from a late-August visit to the cafe, when Carol was holding down the fort. This is kale, tomato, and couscous salad that I dream about.

kale tomato couscous salad

The peach pie was as glorious as it looks, and the lemon balm-wild mint iced tea, with its no-fuss hand-scrawled label, was like sweet summer mountain air distilled into liquid and poured into a tall glass.

peach pie

Side note: The most popular post on Brooklyn DoubleWide is the one about the Hickory Tussock Moth Caterpillar. Click through to find out more about the white, fuzzy, and poisonous little friend. This cute little guy joined us for lunch, and we were careful not to pet him:

White fuzzy caterpillar

Without Rob’s help, Carol was able to churn out killer egg sandwiches, fluffy English muffins (complete with an adorable Bunnicula butter dish, pictured below), but I have to admit that I really missed Rob’s specials, which were inspired by whatever ingredients struck his fancy. Once when we were chatting in his kitchen, he casually passed me a spoonful of his extremely funky homemade fish sauce, and in that moment, he won me over forever. The following week, he was putting his spin on Vietnamese fare, stirring his Catskills fish sauce into steamy bowls of pho.

bunny butter dish.jpg

Heather Ridge Farm is located at 989 Broome Center Road, Preston Hollow, NY; 518-239-6234. You can learn more about Rob Handel on his website.

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