Blackberry Farm, day 3

Car
We took full advantage of everything today.  We got up early, had breakfast and then took out the Lexus.  Lexus has some kind of partnership with Blackberry Farm.  The cars they use are all from Lexus and the guests can sign up to use them.  Emily and I took out the convertible for a little spin.

Cloudroll
There were a few options on what to go see but many of them were going to take too long.  This time of the year you can get trapped between a slew of cars driving in to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park so we opted for the Foothills Parkway.  The parkway is its own national park that sits at the foothills of the northern Great Smoky Mountains.  The views are spectacular and besides for a few motorcyclists we were the only ones on the road.  The clouds hang down in the mountains before rising up as the day progresses.  It is pretty awesome.

A
The views from each stop along the parkway are just spectacular. 

Lake
At the end of the road is a lake.  If you go left you can go down to a point but it is a long road and one way only.  We turned around and came back. 

Antiquestore
Still had a little time to kill and stopped in an antique store.  Lots of these on the road.  Just rows of this kind of stuff.

Michaelsullivansalads
Our next activity back at the farm was a cooking presentation.  A little bit like being on the food channel.  Michael Sullivan was the chef.  He prepared our lunch.  We did not learn anything and it went on a little bit too long but was more interesting was the questions that people asked.  Obviously most people want to cook but don't feel completely comfortable doing it.  Lunch was a salad of kale, strawberries, golden beets, caramelized pecans and a lemon dressing.  Hanger steak with a red wine sauce, a potato gratin and sauteed red kale.  For dessert, a banana fosters clafoutis.

Megun
Our next activity was truly a highlight.  We went skeet shooting.  I have a nice bruise on my right side to prove it.  I had done skeet shooting once about 25 years ago and riflery at camp as a kid.  The people who took us about were so nice and really great instructors.  All the siblings of the young woman had gotten a full ride to college on shooting.  Here I am.

Shooting
Emily and I taking ourselves seriously.

Farmhousenearfarm
We got back to the farm and got ready for dinner.  We stopped by the farm on the way there.  The small shed is where they keep all the supplies.

Farm
Here is where the vegetables are grown.

Chickenliver
Might have been the best meal we had.  Chicken liver pate with strawberies, watercress and rye toast.  Notice the slates.  I wonder if they came from Brooklyn Slate?

Shrimpgrits
Roasted North Carolina shimp in Anson Mills grits, andouille sausage, preserved tomatoes and pickled pepper emulsion.  This was seriously divine.

Duck
We both opted for the duck.  Grilled Peking duck breast with asparagus, spring peas, beech mushrooms, Anson Mills corn crisp and foie gras emulsion. 

Cellar
After dinner we went down to the wine cellar.  They have 50,000 bottles on site and another 100,000 in storage.  The 50,000 is worth $8m.  The sommelier showed us a bottle for $17k and they have sold two bottles so far.  I am always fascinated that someone would order a bottle at that price but obviously they do. 

Back to the golf cart and home.