• Twin Farms Recap {Friday}

    March 11, 2013

    Well, guys, last weekend was absolutely incredible. Mal and I were invited to spend two, complimentary nights at Twin Farms, an all-inclusive, five-star resort and spa, in Barnard, Vermont. We had an amazing time– eating and drinking, spending time outside in nature, and chatting extensively with wine expert and educator, Kevin Zraly. Mal and I were very, very fortunate to have been invited as guests, and our time at Twin Farms is definitely an experience neither of us will ever forget.


    Because of an unexpected snow storm on Thursday night, Mal’s school was canceled on Friday, so we drove up to Vermont as soon as we dug ourselves our of our driveway.

    When we arrived at Twin Farms just a few hours later, we were warmly greeted and invited inside for a tour of the Main House while our bags were delivered to our room. Brenda, the Recreation Director, who has worked at Twin Farms for 18 years now, showed us around.


    The Main House includes the Barn Room, which was gorgeous!




    Each afternoon, tea, scones, and fresh fruit are offered here for guests.


    Once Mal and I had a chance to explore the Main House, we were each offered a cocktail. A drink after a long, snowy drive? Yes, please!


    Noreen, the bartender, immediately poured us a couple of drinks. Like Brenda, she’s been with Twin Farms for quite a long time—14 years! Almost everyone we met at Twin Farms has worked at the resort for many, many years, which definitely says something about it. It’s a great place with great people!


    Once we had our drinks, Mal and I took a seat and relaxed in the Barn Room for awhile.




    A little while later, it was time to see our accommodations for the weekend. Brenda took us to our cottage (yes, we had entire cottage to ourselves!), which was just a short walk from the Main House.


    Each cottage at Twin Farms is decorated with a theme in mind. Mal and I stayed at the Perch Cottage, which was situated right above a stream and beaver dam, so the walls and décor featured fish-inspired art and carvings.










    Waiting for us on the desk was a complimentary copy of Kevin Zraly’s Windows on the World Complete Wine Course. (Kevin was visiting Twin Farms for a special wine weekend.)


    Our cottage also included a number of complimentary snacks and beverages.



    The French press and coffee was so good. Because we’re iced coffee freaks, Mal and I made French press iced coffee for Saturday morning almost as soon as we got settled.


    Off the main room of the Perch Cottage was a huge closet and dressing area. (Twin Farms provides same-day laundry service.)


    On the back of the cottage was a three-season porch, which overlooked the steam and beaver dam.


    And, finally, there was an amazing bathroom!


    Holy moly, it was huge! Brenda told us that the owner of Twin Farms loves big bathrooms when he travels, so all of the accommodations at the resort feature over-sized (and beautiful) bathrooms.



    The shower alone was almost as big as our bathroom at home!


    Mal and I loved the Out of the Woods products that were provided. They smelled so good… sage, juniper, lavender… just like a spa!



    The cast iron tub was also something special. It was, of course, enormous, but we were also told it would hold the heat of a drawn bath for 5 hours.


    Obviously, we needed to sit IN the tub to see just how huge it was!


    Dinner was still a few hours away, but Mal and I were really hungry, so we called the Main House to see what food options were available to us. Noreen, the person on the other end of the line, offered to make us a sandwich and bring it to our cottage. Not even 15 minutes later, Mal and I were eating tuna sandwiches and veggies with a creamy pesto dipping sauce. We pretty much could have ordered anything we wanted, but Noreen suggested tuna salad with crudites, and it sounded delicious to us!


    Everything was so fresh and flavorful, and we didn’t even need to leave our cottage!


    We spent the next couple of hours hanging out and relaxing before heading back to the Main House for a special cocktail hour with Kevin Zraly.


    The location of the Perch Cottage was great. It was right next to the gym and pub (our favorite places, obviously) and only a 5-minute walk to the Main House. Twin Farms provided a shuttle to and from all of the cottages, but Mal and I just ended up walking since it was so close to everything.



    The cocktail hour was a special get-together with Kevin Zraly, but Twin Farms offers drinks every night in the Barn Room for their guests.



    All sorts of delicious food options were served at the cocktail hour, including hot and cold passed appetizers as well as a huge cheese board with crackers and fruit.




    During the cocktail hour, David Morris, Wine Director at Twin Farms, lead a “Judgement of Paris” wine tasting, where we had the chance to try four different wines and see how they compared.


    The tasting was basically “new” wines (California and Washington) versus “old” wines (France and Italy), so it immediately reminded me of the movie “Bottle Shock,” which was exactly what David was going for because he even picked a bottle of Chateau Montelena (from the movie) to sample.


    David was really friendly and loved teaching us about wine. He was so enthusiastic about each of the bottles, it made me even more excited to try them!


    A little while later, it was time for dinner, which featured a number of food and wine pairings.




    The food at Twin Farms was outstanding. Seriously, everything I ate throughout the weekend was fresh, flavorful, and interesting, but not overdone. The portions were small, but substantial, so you could easily enjoy all of the courses and taste a bunch of different foods without feeling stuffed by the end.

    Dinner was a four-course meal, which started with a 65-degree egg over oats with braised leeks, garlic, and a cheddar-balsamic reduction. The next course was scallops with frisée, butternut squash, caramelized golden apples, and a Marcona sauce, which was sweet and nutty and totally tied the dish together. The main course was roasted chicken with a rutabaga puree, crispy kale, roasted turnip, and brown rice. Dessert was a chocolate pâté with spice cake, maple ice cream, and red currant caramel sauce. It was an amazing dinner, and I loved it all!


    After dinner, Mal and I quickly returned to our cottage and then went immediately to the Japanese Furo for a soak in the 104-degree water inside.


    A Japanese Furo is basically a bathhouse with an “unspoken rule:” women enter on the left and men enter on the right.



    And then you can meet in the middle!


    Mal and I spent awhile in the Furo before heading back to our room for the night.

    More adventures to come! I still have so much to tell you guys!

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    { 52 comments… read them below or add one }

    Lindsay March 11, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    What an amazing trip. I love seeing little places like this. And I cannot believe that bathroom and tub! It’s probably the size of my apartment 🙂


    Danica @ It's Progression March 11, 2013 at 6:31 pm

    I can’t believe all of this was just in part of your trip! Looks amazing!


    Veterinarianess March 11, 2013 at 7:17 pm

    That place looks amazing! I would love to go there for a special occasion (honeymoon, etc)! 😀


    Karen @ Runner Girl Eats March 11, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    Omg I will be dreaming about that bathroom tonight. This all looks incredible! I can’t wait to see more of it.


    Rachel McIntyre March 11, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    Wow! It all looks amazing!


    Janny March 11, 2013 at 7:30 pm

    OMG that place looks AMAZING! I’d definitely love a soak in that tub. 😀


    Katherine March 11, 2013 at 7:37 pm

    Your pictures are gorgeous!



    Babs March 11, 2013 at 8:09 pm

    Twin Farms looks amazing. It’s always the best when the services and amenities of a place are top notch.


    Kat @ balanceandspice March 11, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    Wow, what an amazing looking weekend!! It looks like such a wonderful place to visit. Thanks for sharing the wonderful photos and memories with us!


    Heidi March 11, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    Lucky Ducks! That looks ah-mazing!


    BroccoliHut March 11, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    Wow! Sounds like a perfect weekend! I can’t wait to read more!


    Susanna March 11, 2013 at 8:46 pm

    This place looks like heaven. I have been dying to go away to a place like this. Is there any skiing or snowshoeing there in the winter? Looks like you had a blast!


    Pam March 11, 2013 at 8:48 pm

    Wow this place looks like heaven! Great that it’s within driving distance for you.
    I have never been to Vermont, but this would be the place to stay if we ever head up there.


    luv what you do March 11, 2013 at 8:51 pm

    That cottage is the most adorable thing I have ever seen!
    I am so super jealous and can’t wait to see more pictures of your weekend!


    Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl March 11, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    How incredibly cute and cozy is this place?? I love it! What a fabulous place to go for the weekend :).


    Heather March 11, 2013 at 9:12 pm

    I can’t get over how homey it looks! A-mazing!


    Cortney March 11, 2013 at 9:26 pm

    Love the large bathtub and Furo! Looks like a great getaway. I checked out their prices, though and I have to say they are WAY out of my range 🙁


    Heather @ pass the dressing March 11, 2013 at 9:36 pm

    I am checking this place out as I type. Your review is great and it sounds amazing!


    Monica March 11, 2013 at 11:11 pm

    @Heather @ pass the dressing: If you have to look… you can’t afford it…


    Heather @ pass the dressing March 11, 2013 at 11:43 pm

    @Monica: Um.


    Nicole March 11, 2013 at 11:54 pm

    @Heather @ pass the dressing: Wow. From seeing your comment below Monica, I must say that you sound super jealous. Tina got to experience an awesome spa for free – why wouldn’t she share her experience there on her blog?


    Monica March 12, 2013 at 12:00 am

    @Nicole: Jealousy is useful when it makes me rx at crossfit. This kind of post is just not relevant to my life.

    Heather @ pass the dressing March 12, 2013 at 7:48 am

    @Nicole: Nicole, I am very confused. Monica posted a condescending remark on my praise of Tina’s review. I was excited to check out the place online based on Tina’s glowing and Monica posts a completely useless and unhelpful response to my comment (even though there are tons of glowing responses to Tina’s review). Why then is my comment “super jealous”. If anything, it’s the other way around hun.

    Heather @ pass the dressing March 12, 2013 at 7:57 am

    @Nicole: Oops sorry Nicole, based on the way you replied, I thought you were replying to me. Methinks you were actually replying to Monica’s post, not to mine. Sorry.

    Monica March 11, 2013 at 11:58 pm

    @Heather @ pass the dressing: Not you, personally. That’s a colloquialism when shopping places without clear price displays, “If you have to ask how much it costs, you can’t afford it!” I looked it up! It’s pricey! She got a whole cottage but its a months rent per night, with a multi-night minimum!


    Heather @ pass the dressing March 12, 2013 at 7:55 am

    @Monica: @Monica: I appreciate your explanation (which is obvious), but I am not sure why my comment warranted your reply and, quite honestly, your implicit assumption about my financial situation Your comment just struck me as odd and out of place.

    Nicole March 12, 2013 at 12:44 pm

    @Nicole: @Heather @ pass the dressing: Ha, yeah sorry Heather, totally just pushed the wrong ‘reply’ spot! My comment was meant for Monica, who apparently thinks that Tina’s blog needs to strictly only discuss CrossFit. Right.


    Heather @ pass the dressing March 12, 2013 at 2:13 pm

    @Nicole: hehe. Sometimes we need a lil luxury in our lives. Sorry Monica. Crossfit all day makes Heather & Nicole (and I think Tina and all her readers) dull boys and girls. Keep up the good work.


    Maureen @ Breaking Free & Finding Me March 11, 2013 at 9:37 pm

    OMG this all looks so fantastic!


    Alex @ Raw Recovery March 11, 2013 at 9:57 pm

    Can I be you when I grow up? 🙂 That trip looks awesome and it sounds like you made the most of it!


    Mary March 11, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    A beyond beautiful place, but a 4 digit price per night x’s 3, is sadly out of our budget for sure.


    Cheryl @ Happy is the new healthy March 11, 2013 at 10:15 pm

    I LOVE the looks of this! I also love your boots — they fit in even! 🙂


    Nicole @ Fruit 'N' Fitness March 11, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    I have been following your pictures on instagram but, WOW! That place looks beyond amazing, every aspect from the bathtub to the bed and the food!


    Jelly March 11, 2013 at 10:35 pm

    What a treat! Happy that you could experience such serenity in nature.


    Teresa @ www.fitinwoodbine.com March 11, 2013 at 10:44 pm

    Wow!!! Looks like a beautiful weekend!!!!! Speechless!!!


    Monica March 11, 2013 at 11:10 pm

    That place is HELLA expensive. You can BUY A CAR for the cost to stay there for ONE night. I might stop reading this blog if all she does is write about the ridiculously expensive vacations she goes on for free – that is NOT inspirational.


    Nicole March 11, 2013 at 11:50 pm

    This place looks AWESOME!!


    Kena March 12, 2013 at 12:06 am

    Wow, that place is beautiful…that tub is amazing!


    Serena March 12, 2013 at 2:15 am

    Amazing. I wouldn’t want to go home!


    Liz March 12, 2013 at 2:17 am

    Wow! This place looks fantastic! I don’t think I’ll ever be able to afford that place, but how awesome you guys got a free weekend?!? 😀


    Jan @ Sprouts n Squats March 12, 2013 at 3:55 am

    Wow looks like an amazing place and an amazing cottage you guys stayed in!

    Love all the delicious food you got to indulge in and wine!


    Melissa @ A Girl Called Cake March 12, 2013 at 6:31 am

    Looks like you had a great time. The photos are amazing and I think I’ll have to visit there soon! Perfect weekend getaway spot.


    Emily @ Life on Food March 12, 2013 at 6:41 am

    What a beautiful place! I want that bathroom.


    Lindsay March 12, 2013 at 6:49 am

    Twin Farms looks like such an amazing place! I can’t get over that tub! Now I want to set up a special savings account so that one day, I’ll be able to afford a night there 🙂


    Annie Atherton March 12, 2013 at 7:34 am

    Oh My!!!!! I will admit I am so incredibly jealous! I was so excited to hear there was an all inclusive resort right here in New England. Then my hopes of a beautiful vacation were crushed when I saw the price. But, I love at least getting to see through your camera how beautiful it is! Can’t wait to hear the rest of your recap.

    And then I am crossing my fingers that the resort is going to give away a weekend to one of your readers!!! hehe, a girl can dream!


    Tina March 12, 2013 at 8:10 am

    @Annie Atherton: I love this idea! I’m going to propose it! 🙂


    Nicole March 12, 2013 at 8:12 am

    Loved seeing all the pics on Instagram over the weekend. Looks like a beautiful and picturesque corner of New England!


    Alyssa March 12, 2013 at 8:59 am

    I love that movie!! That place looks divine and would be wonderful in summer or winter 🙂 So glad you had fun!


    De @ Cooking for the Other Half March 12, 2013 at 9:44 am

    This place looks incredible!!!! I want to take a weekend up there immediately!


    Kelly H-Y March 12, 2013 at 1:42 pm

    Wow, wow, wow!!! What an incredible place! Definitely have to put this one on the list of places to visit if I’m ever in that area!!


    Jennifer L March 12, 2013 at 9:06 pm

    A wine event with Kevin Zraly! Lucky! I use his book quite often as a reference. I bet you tasted some amazing wine and pairings. I’m so jealous.


    Kath March 18, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    What an incredible looking weekend!!!


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