Again this year, Chronogram magazine is hosting the Chronogrammies, reader’s choice awards in several dozen categories. And again this year, Cidiot is a finalist for regional podcast in Arts & Entertainment category. Voting is April 1 through May 15, 2022 so please do.
Several businesses (and friends) are also finalists, including Greig Farm who provided this delicious blueberries photo for the U-Pick category. Tune into Episode 64 (out Thursday April 14) for more editorial on my picks—and why.
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
HISTORICAL SITE/MUSEUM: Olana State Historical Site is tempting for its role in Hudson Valley art history not to mention its striking house, a mix of Victorian style with Middle-Eastern decorative elements. Also on the ballot is FDR Presidential Library, which I still haven’t been if you can believe it.
RADIO STATION: WAMC is wonderful, but this is an opportunity to shine the spotlight on my friends at indie music station WKZE98.1 in Red Hook. Another good option is Radio Kingston.
REGIONAL PODCAST: Thrilled there’s more competition this year, but c'mon, please vote for Cidiot. You can vote every day if you’re up for it.
BOOKSTORE: For me it’s Oblong Books vs. Rough Draft. Both carried my memoir for awhile and Brian and I frequent both so I may let the Ouija board decide.
BUTCHER SHOP: Our friends Victor and Stephanie turned us on to Woodstock Meats which we frequent.
CANDY STORE: Samuels Sweet Shop for its celebrity owners (Paul Rudd, Hilarie Burton, Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and fun displays of every sentimental favorite. The shop's Instagram feed is mouth-watering.
GROCERY STORE: Adams Fairacre Farms gets our vote. Brian has even ran into Daniel Craig there. Mother Earth’s has gotten a bit weird.
MEN’S SHOP: Hamilton & Adams. Hear all about it in from owner Andrew Adotta in Episode 60: “Upstate & Chill.”
PET STORE: You know I’m voting for Pause Dog Boutique in Rhinebeck. Great selection, special treats like beef and chicken woofers, and amazing service. Tell owner Sammy that Cidiot sent ya.
REMOTE WORK SPOT Perhaps this depends on where you are. Bangallworks in Standfordville with its awesome design and Citiot in Catskill are my two picks. Also featured in episodes 49 and 52 respectively, I’m not choosing between friends.
HEALTH & WELLNESS
BARBER SHOP: Happy to see my buddies at Pugslys in Kingston finalists again. Shout out to Miguel, Antonio and Joel. Stickers are in the mail. Voting for them for sure.
VETERINARIAN: Nora’s voting for Rhinebeck Animal Hospital. They love her and she loves them.
NATURE AND OUTDOORS
DOG PARKS: Great ways for Cidiots to meet people. I’ve heard good things about Gardiner Dog Park, but I’ve been to Rhinebeck Dog Park and liked it.
HIKE: The walk to Poet’s Walk Rustic Summer House is my vote since Nora and I know it well and you get the benefits of hilly outside and woodsy inside with a surprise little house of a destination along the Hudson River. The Overlook Mountain House ruins is also on the ballot which I am curious about and suspect we’ll try this spring.
PARK/PRESERVE: Olana is a classic but I’ll vote this year for Ashokan Reservoir (photo via Scenic Hudson) because it’s newer to us and Brian loves to run it. Minnewaska however, has been a favorite go-toplace in at least two podcast interviews.
PICNIC SPOT: For me it’s Clermont for its picnic tables along the Hudson and the fact that we’re there nearly every week but I could also see voting for Saugerties Lighthouse which is adorable and provides an ability to swim while you have a sandwich.
SUNSET SPOT: Brian and I LOVE sunsets and this is a tough category. Olana State Historic Site is a very high point facing west so that’s probably the hero. Burger Hill in Rhinebeck is also tempting, also facing west at the Catskills, with its rock engravings which explain the mountains you’re looking at, Saugerties Lighthouse would be good if you can get upstairs. And Walkway Over The Hudson in Poughkeepsie is also a fair shot since Sunset out in the middle of the river is really tempting.
BBQ: Smoky Rock BBQ in Rhinebeck is my vote. I catered from it for Brian’s birthday last summer and it was delicious and great service.
COFFEE SHOP: Rough Draft Bar & Books could be good because it’s so comfortable to hang out there with a new book. But if you’re already voting for Rough Draft in books sub-category, then other ideas are Half Moon Rondout Cafe in Kingston, or I swear someone told me something good about Twin Ravens in Ellenville.
CSA: Community Supported Agriculture (CSAs) are crucial to our farming community and we’ve joined many over the years and have some favorites like Hearty Roots. In the finalists this year, I’d vote for Greig Farm which I talk about frequently and we have bought a lot of their delicious produce.
FARM STAND: How can there not be three subcategories of this for each area? Brian and I will vote for Montgomery Place Orchards because we’re there all the time and Brian eagerly awaits for its reopening every season and knows everyone there.
FARMER'S MARKET: Rhinebeck Farmers Market is well known on Sundays but the parking is so miserable I prefer Kingston Farmers Market on Saturdays.
GLUTEN FREE FRIENDLY: This is a happy subcagtegory to see. Yum Yum Noodle has been my go-to but I want to try them all including Garden Cafe Woodstock and of course Sissy’s Cafe Place. I think it’s funny that all these are basically in the Woodstock-Saugerties area.
ITALIAN: I’m voting for Giaobatta in Tivoli of course. Not just because Chef Francesco would otherwise come after me with a carving knife. You know how I love their bolognese but throughout the pandemic we’ve also regularly being doing the takeaway chicken marsala.
NEW RESTAURANT: Good Night was the restaurant that Brian was supposed to take me for our 20th wedding anniversary but we bailed and just did burgers and martinis at the bar at Gaskins.
BREWERY: This is a good category since the Hudson Valley has so many great and new ones. I’m holding off since my friend Jamie and I are doing a brewery tour and special episode later this spring though this list is giving us ideas of where we might go.
MARTINI: Victor says Red Onion has his vote since it’s already gotten a lot of his money.
WINE LIST: Brunette in Kingston down in the Rondout is a really cute wine bar with a great list and a fun place to stop into
TOURIST ATTRACTION: I still must do Walkway Over the Hudson and while I think Opus 40 is pretty eclectic and a friend showed her work there last year, Art Omi in Ghent outside Hudson continues to be my favorite among these finalists.
U-PICK: First choice is Greig Farm in Red Hook on Pitcher Lane as the best-run U-pick operation, probably from years of experience and famously delicious fruit (see blueberries photo up top). Its farm store is open seven days a week. Rose Hill Farm is an up-and-comer with its expanding events and services.
HOTEL: I was surprised The Maker in Hudson was not a finalist, but glad to see as a finalist Graham & Co., run by friends Martin & Joe. It’s a great boutique hotel in Phoenicia. Note: I recently put up a “Where to Stay” blog post if you’re visiting and need ideas.
BED & BREAKFAST: I keep hearing good things about Hasbrouck House in Stone Ridge and Batterby House in Hudson.
HOME CENTER & INTERIOR DESIGNER: Hudson Valley Kitchen Design Center gets my vote in both categories. They’re also a new sponsor of Cidiot! Thank you.
HOUSEWARES: I’ve wandered the Culinary Warehouse in Kingston which is fun but I’m probably voting for Blue Cashew Kitchen for its cool inventory and helpful staff.
CHEF: I’m voting for TJ Eades at Greig Farm Market (photo above). I get the mesclun salad with grilled chicken every other week for lunch, but it’s his meatloaf that is to die for. Gluten-free friendly too.
LOCAL CELEBRITY: Sexiest man alive Paul Rudd is here, but so is Mark Ruffalo who’s saving the world.
LGBTQ ADVOCATE/ACTIVIST: Lots of good candidates though I don’t know any personally. Julie Novak won last year and Signy Furiya is director of Well-Being Institute at the LGBTQ Center in Kingston.
Happy Voting. Thanks for supporting Cidiot in Regional Podcast under Arts & Entertainment!