Early morning put-in from Coveside
Not to soon to think about paddling! The Midcoast of Maine is a world-class kayaking destination and we invite current and potential paddlers to take a Maine Kayak Getaway in our spectacular location. Coveside Bed & Breakfast is ideally located for kayakers: our dock on Gotts Cove provides direct access to Sheepscot Bay. The incredible number of nearby inlets, coves, and islands provide a variety of interesting destinations. Easy paddles include the short trip to Five Islands (and its famous lobster wharf, perhaps for lunch), or a circuit of nearby MacMahan Island. More adventurous paddles lead to the Appalachian Mountain Club’s Beale Island, Robinhood Cove, the islands of Hockamock Bay, or across the Sheepscot to our favorite picnic island (pictured below) or to Oliver’s, a great little dockside restaurant with its own kayak dock on Cozy Harbor.
Paddlers can put in here at Coveside, either in their own boats or prearranged rental boats, delivered to our dock. We can prepare lunches and have suggestions for favorite beaches or coves for picnics. Novices can join a directed paddle for a morning or afternoon, organized by Sea Spray Kayaking, departing either from their headquarters on the New Meadows River or from Sebasco Harbor Resort on the Phippsburg peninsula.
We have put together a kayaking package for those staying with us at least two nights. It includes half-day paddle (including boat rental and all equipment) with a leader/instructor with Sea Spray and, to celebrate a great day on the water, dinner for two at our favorite Bath restaurant, Solo Bistro. The cost (not including lodging charges) for this $175 value is $150. If desired, $90 of the package cost can be applied to kayak rental and delivery to Coveside.
Click here to check on availability, or phone or email us; we’re always happy to talk about paddling in our special location.
Spring – Finally! Sun in the garden; fog on the bay.
We’re celebrating spring with a new Memorial Day Getaway Special — dinner for two at Solo Bistro, two fabulous lobster rolls at Five Islands Lobster Company, and entry for two to either Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens or the Maine Maritime Museum all at no additional cost with a three-day (or longer) stay in May. Check out our new packages and specials — including a new kayak getaway – here. (We’ll be posting some blog entries describing our new packages in the coming weeks).
As for the scene on Gotts Cove — spring has finally arrived, after a chilly winter. Reservations for next summer are filling up, however, and we expect a sunny season filled with happy guests.You can now make reservations directly on our website, but we’re always happy to talk by phone or email.
We invited friends and neighbors to an Easter brunch at Coveside, so Carolyn could try out new recipes and get back into baking after our lengthy sojourn in Europe. The event was a great success and the food — especially the baked goods — was wonderful. Many new ideas for breakfasts next summer! Recipes for the baked goods came mostly from Thomas Keller’s beautiful new cookbook, Bouchon Bakery (Artisan Books), and from the new cookbook from our favorite Portland bakery: Alison Pray and Tara Smith, Standard Baking Company Pastries (Down East Press).
Craquelins – a buttery brioche with candied orange rind and orange liquor.
Almond Croissants – start with home made croissants, add almond filling. Mmmm
Blueberry Ricotta Custard Cake, a keeper!
Morning Glory Muffins — an old recipe that is still great
Italian Easter Pie or Torta di Spinaci
Carolyn’s riff on cobb salad, with smoked chicken, roquefort, bacon, tomatoes, etc.
First day of Spring?
We returned from Europe a few days ago, hoping to find the beginnings of Spring. But we found the remnants of a late winter snowstorm: Spring comes to Maine — slowly. The snow is melting fast, however, and we have high hopes that we’ll soon see the first stirrings of the season to come. In the meantime, we’re making plans for the summer season; Carolyn is testing new recipes; and we’re looking forward to our 16th year as innkeepers.
Our first website, a classy, state-of-the-art website in 1998, was designed by our good friend, Chap Bowie (now retired from the website business). It served us extremely well during the years of dial-up internet service and beyond. But its narrow format and compressed photographs were no longer suited to the broadband era. We were lucky to obtain the services of Whitestone Marketing – the national leader in websites for inns and bed & breakfasts – to design a new website for us. And we employed Lynn Karlin – a preeminent Maine professional photographer – to do a 2 1/2 day photo shoot here at the inn last summer. The result, we think, is stunning. Thanks to Whitestone and to Lynn for a superb job!
The cover of our new photo book
For years we had a photo album showing the changes we made at Coveside from 1998, when we bought the property, to the present. The pictures were always falling out, fading, etc. So we had the photos scanned and put together a bound photo book that gives a nice summary of before and after. It will be available to peruse when you are here; but you can see it on your computer immediately if you click on this link. The book was made on Snapfish, HP’s photo site. If you don’t already have a Snapfish account, you’ll be asked to provide an email address and password to create one (a bother, but it is a great site for sharing photos, making books, cards, etc.) The book takes a while to load.
Gotts Cove at 5 pm, October 29
We don’t normally get white caps on Gotts Cove, but the winds today have been incredible. But the brunt of Sandy has apparently passed to our south. We’re getting strong winds, but we still have power at 10:30 pm, when we’re headed for bed. We seem to have survived at least the first part of Sandy intact.
What Do You Do With 12 Baguettes?
Homework From Baking Class
Tom & Carolyn spent the weekend in Norwich, Vermont, at the King Arthur bake center and school. Tom took a class called “Baguettes Six Ways” taught by Jeffrey Hammelman, chief baker at King Arthur. Carolyn took a class on “Artisan Breakfast Breads” taught by Ciril Hitz, author of several books on breads and pastries. Who knows how this will change breakfasts next summer! Some pictures of the classes:
It’s August and the wild blueberries are in season. Time for us to make our usual 3 1/2 gallons, enough to last us until next year’s crop comes in. A big job, made easier with a food processor. We basically make blueberry jam and can it in quart jars. When we need syrup (for those great pancakes) we just dump the jam into the food processor and add enough orange juice to thin it into the right consistency and whir it just until the lumps of jam are gone.
Carolyn makes 2 or 3 batches at a time (despite what it says on the pectin package!)
Filling the jars — careful, it’s HOT!
CERTIFICATE OF EXCELLENCE
Coveside Bed & Breakfast
We were notified last month that Coveside won tripadvisor’s prestigious Certificate of Excellence for 2012, their highest award. This was based entirely on the opinions of our guests: 63 of the 66 reviewers gave us a rating of “excellent” (the other three rated us “very good”). We’re proud that folks thought enough of our inn to take time to say nice things about us on tripadvisor. It turns out that reviews on sites such as tripadvisor, google, and BedandBreakfast.com are a major source of information for prospective guests, so we appreciate every review. If you’ve stayed at Coveside and would like to write a review, you can do so by clicking on the following links: tripadvisor, BedandBreakfast.com . Thanks!