Friday, March 5, 2010

The Lamplight Inn Bed and Breakfast

"Old friendships are like jewels, polished over time to become beautiful and enduring."
Celia Brayfield

I can't believe that The Lamplight Inn Bed and Breakfast is celebrating its 25th anniversary! It seems like yesterday that my best friend from high school and her husband took on this labor of love.

It was 1984 when Linda and her soon-to-be-husband, Gene Merlino, bought the 1890 Victorian home overlooking Lake Luzerne in New York's Adirondacks. They had a wonderful vision of turning this run-down home into a thriving bed and breakfast. Sounds romantic--but they had no illusions. They embarked on this adventure with eyes wide open and were ready for the work that lay ahead.

It wasn't long before each weekend they would leave their jobs in the textile industry to go to work on the house. Most weekends a group of friends and family accompanied them, and soon the renovation began to take shape. Sometime in October that year they found the time for a wedding, and they got married on our front porch surrounded by the people who loved them. Our old house was undergoing a renovation of sorts, too. So we were just glad that no one fell through the porch! The inn was opened for guests in September, 1985.

The Lamplight Inn is a beautifully restored home on ten acres of hills, white pines, and trails. The large wrap-around porch greets you before you walk into the great room which is divided into three seating areas. The sunporch dining room beckons you to sit awhile. There is a renovated caretaker's cottage on the grounds as well as a newly built carriage house. There is a room for everyone's taste here.

Linda and Gene quickly won over the community with their friendly manner and their genuine hospitality. They have became a mainstay of the community that they love. Gene is even the town supervisor. And let's not forget Valentino, the Inn's dog.

The inn is known far and wide for the wonderful breakfasts that Gene and Linda cook up. Each morning guests are greeted in the dining room with Linda's home made granola, muffins or coffee cakes and fresh fruit. These can be enjoyed along with your coffee while deciding what to order from the menu.

Every day besides eggs any-style and a variety of omelets, Gene offers a Special of the Day. There are often Belgian Waffles, Pancakes, Peach Crepes or Croissant French Toast--my favorite. After a breakfast like this you will be ready for hiking or biking or enjoying the lakes and beautiful views.

The Lamplight Inn is well-known for bridal and baby showers as well as their New Year's Eve Dessert Buffet and the very popular Mother's Day Breakfast Buffet.

This month in celebration of their 25th Anniversary, The Lamplight Inn is hosting "Evening In Tuscany" dinner on Saturday nights March 13, 20th and 27th. In a addition to soup, salad and dessert, Gene will create a pasta entree right in front of you in the dining room. Sounds like fun!

So to my dear friends, Linda and Gene--you did good! Happy Anniversary!

These muffins have been on the menu from the beginning. Enjoy.

Healthy Bran Muffins

1 cup all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1 cup low-fat milk
1 1/4 cups 100% bran cereal
1 egg
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup raisins, optional

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with vegetable oil.

Combine bran cereal and milk, and let sit for 5 minutes. Blend together dry ingredients.

Add egg and oil to bran mixture. Stir until well blended. Add dry ingredients, stirring until just combined. Stir in raisins, if using. Full muffin tins about 2/3 full. Bake 15 minutes until done.

Makes 12

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