Sunday, July 3, 2011

Bucks County Weekend

Bucks County is one of my favorite places to visit when I need to just get away. Besides being the home of my beloved Hamilton's Grill Room (and only an hour from Manhattan), Bucks County has tons of shops, activities, and scenic beauty to brighten your heart for the weekend.

The Woolverton Inn is our home away from home. Carolyn and Bob are the doting innkeepers of this gorgeous estate in Stockton, New Jersey. The rooms are so cozy and the surrounding countryside invites a much-needed exhale from city life. We stay in the Garden Cottage, where pets are allowed. Ellie loves the accommodations.

Also in Stockton is Phillips' Fine Wines, an experience in and of itself. The owner, Dick Phillips, is the most delightful man; he gave us a tour of the store, which feels more like a wine library with its tiny rooms and hidden hallways. My eyes lit up when he told us stories about Julia Child and her frequent visits to Phillips' when Dick was a kid (Julia and her beloved, Paul, were married in Stockton). Perhaps she came here to buy those "full-bodied young red wine[s]" with which she would make her famous Boeuf Bourgingnon ...

Right next store to Phillips' is the Stockton Farmers' Market, home to local vendors selling everything from fresh produce to specialty products. Open only on the weekends, the market is a feast for the eyes (and the stomach)!

Nearby in Lambertville I found a great housewares shop called Zinc Home and Garden (74 Bridge Street). The modern farmhouse style was right up my alley! You'll find an amazing collection of industrial and vintage pieces displayed with an inspiring dose of creativity.

When you're done with your shopping I highly recommend a walk along the Delaware River—the perfect Sunday morning activity before heading home—where you can take in the views and connect with things exactly as they are.

Perhaps the greatest part of any weekend adventure is the fact that you can arrive without an agenda. Billy and I love the aimless wandering and the process of making a new place our own. In New York I often find it hard to separate myself from the rhythm of the city, whereas in a foreign town I can be immersed in a new place and yet remain present in my own experience. After a weekend in Bucks County I feel relaxed and completely reconnected. I hope you find the same!

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