New York Foods Star on the Inaugural Luncheon Menu


Hudson Valley apples, wine from the Finger Lakes and Long Island and two cheeses from Cooperstown that are available at the Palisades Winter Farmers Market will all be on the menu at the 2013 Presidential Inaugural Luncheon Monday.

Cooperstown cheeseNew York foods are being featured prominently because U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) is the Chairman of the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies.

The meal features lobster as a first course, served with New England Clam Chowder sauce and served on sauteed spinach with sweet potato hay. It’s paired with Tierce 2009 Finger Lakes Dry Riesling, which three vineyards collaborated on: Anthony Road Winery, Fox Run Vineyards, and Red Newt Cellars.

The main course is Hickory Grilled Bison with a Wild Huckleberry Reduction, Strawberry Preserve and Red Cabbage. Accompanying it are a red potato horseradish cake; baby golden beets and green beans; and butternut squash puree. The wine, from Long Island, is a 2009 Merlot from Bedell Cellars.

Dessert — Hudson Valley Apple Pie with Sour Cream Ice Cream and Maple Caramel Sauce, Aged Cheeses and Honeycomb — is the true New York star. The cheese comes from Cooperstown Cheese Company in Otsego County, owned by Sharon Tomaselli and Bob Sweitzer and sold at the indoor farmers maket in Palisades on Saturdays (that’s Bob Sweitzer, above, last Saturday, in a photo by Tania Savayan). Cooperstown will provide two cheeses: Jersey Girl Colby and the award-winning Toma Celena.

“Cooperstown may be better known for the Baseball Hall of Fame,” Schumer said in a press release. “But I can promise this cheese is going to be a home run.”

Other New York products include Ida Red and Gala apples from Golden Harvest Orchards in Valatie, Columbia County in the pie; honey from Seaway Trail Honey in Rochester; and maple syrup, which is also an ingredient in the butternut squash puree, from Crown Maple, also based in Columbia. The head chef of the Inaugural Luncheon, Shannon Shaffer, is a graduate of The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park.


About Author

Liz Johnson is content strategist for The Journal News and, and the founding editor of lohudfood, formerly know as Small Bites. As food editor, she won awards from the New York News Publishers Association, the Association of Food Journalists and the Associated Press. She lives in Nyack with her husband and daughter on a tiny suburban lot they call their farm — with fruit trees, an herb garden, and a yardful of lettuce, tomatoes, onions, shallots, cucumbers, zucchini, radishes, cabbage, peppers, Brussels sprouts and carrots and four big blueberry bushes.

1 Comment

  1. Liz, thanks for a great article! We were truly honored that Crown Maple Syrup was used in two dishes for the inaugural lunch. We’d like your readers to know that we are based in Dutchess County, not Columbia. We will be open to the public on weekends starting February 2nd. Visitors can tour the sugar house to see how we make our pure maple syrup and maple sugar, dine in our Farm Stand Cafe, shop in our retail area, and take nature walks on trails in our beautiful maple forest. See the “Visit” tab at for more information. And if you can’t come see us, you can always order our delicious products through the website. We hope to see you and your readers soon!

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