I have been craving a road trip. Sometimes you just need to get out of New York City and experience other climes, scenery and people. The hustle and bustle of The City can make you love it and hate it all within the same 20 minute time frame. Luckily the folks at Macallan and M Booth had escape ready to go.
Commencing Friday morning, January 21, myself and 4 other bloggers and site creators met to go on an Albert Watson-inspired road trip. Photographer Albert Watson shot the imagery for the labels of a new collection of Macallan. We were to travel up the east coast to Boston, stopping along the way to experience local craftsmanship, exquisite food pairings, and the unexpected.
Oh, I just love an adventure! I was joined on this adventure by Jean Aw of NotCot.com, Eric Yang of GearPatrol.com, Bernard Antolin of Acquiremag.com, Kenji Alt of SeriousEats.com and Brand Ambassador of Macallan, Graeme Russell.
The thought behind the road trip was to uniting two highly revered art processes, photography and whisky-making. Macallan worked with photographer Albert Watson release the latest project for The Macallan Masters of Photography Collection: The Albert Watson Edition where he covered 600 miles in Scotland and Spain taking photos. No Spain or Scotland for us, but Boston isn’t so bad, when you get to know it!
We grabbed the Acela up the northeast corridor to Boston. On the voyage I was inspired by Albert Watson to grab some photos during the trip which you can see on my flickr page, flickr.com/thefatapplenyc . We lucked out by having snow lay a blanket over the landscape.
Once in Boston we hopped a bus to our hotel, XV Beacon. This boutique hotel, off Boston Commons, was visibly historical yet comfortably modern in a number of aspects. We all know it was super cold last weekend in NY so imagine further north in Massachusetts. I didn’t worry so much as I was glad XV Beacon had rooms with working fireplaces! Be still my beating heart.
Upon arrival to the hotel we were met in the lobby by Elise and Rebecca, two M Booth reps that I met the night before. They greeted the gang with gift bags which were filled with tasting bottles of Macallan 12, a copy of Albert Watson’s photo book that accompanies the limited edition bottles he was commissioned for and a box of chocolate truffles that were infused with Macallan.
I headed upstairs to my room and relaxed a bit after the train ride with my fireplace on before dinner. Dinner was at Mooo Restaurant, adjacent to the hotel where we met other Boston area writers and had dinner in their wine cellar.
Brand Ambassador Graeme Russell spoke to the group about the connection with Mooo, they have an extensive in-house collection of Macallan including an odd Macallan liqueur which is a bit of an anomaly. We tasted the Macallan 12, 18 and 25 year vintages as well as the sometimes overlooked 17.
Food and drink flowed in cellar. There were mushroom and goat cheese tarts and Kobe beef dumplings for appetizers and amazing steak, salmon and lamb for dinner.
Following dinner the New York crew decided to head out for a nightcap (or two). We decided on Eastern Standard, known for their specialty drinks. I see why they are known. We tried a bit of everything, personally, I had a Blueberry Thrill. Served in a martini glass, it was an infusion of blueberry with a touch of cardamom. Very delish, though I was a bit jealous of Bernard’s drink, The Periodista, sounds dangerous but smelled amazing.
It was great to be with other writers and listen to the stories of their site. We waxed poetic about traveling and had a couple good laughs.
I capped the night with a Buttered Rum, for my Harry Potter loving heart. Afterward, we headed back to XV Beacon to recoup for Saturday’s adventures in woodworking.
Day 2: To Be Continued…
– Melissa Davis
See more photos on the Flickr album here.