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- Innkeeper - 07-17-2001 07:22 AM

This is part of The Mushroom Festival being held in Kennett Square, PA on September 8 & 9, '01 (http://www.mushroomfest.com). The Soup & Wine part will be held on Sunday the 9th only. Visitors will be able to participate in the tasting and judging of mushroom soups prepared by restaurants competing for the title of "Best Mushroom Soup in the Brandywine Valley" (the mushroom capitol of the world). The soup tasting will be accompanied by wine offered by the Pennsylvania Wine Growers. Admission fee.

We are planning to be there. Love mushroom soup and also have a fondness for wine. In the same neighborhood are Longwood Gardens and a three story brick museum right on Brandywine Creek featuring works of three generations of Wyeths.


- winoweenie - 07-17-2001 05:31 PM

SOB!!!! WW


- mrdutton - 07-17-2001 08:08 PM

Been there done that, was born there, lived there for 18 years and guess what?

What! Come on say it!

All them places be but a hop skip and a jump from my folks place in Northern Delaware. I'll place my bets on the Kennett Square Inn for the best soup.

If you go into Wilmington you can visit the house were the mentor of the Wyeths lived. Seems his name was Pyle or something like that! (No not Gomer.) Let me guess..... Howard Pyle!

Never met Andrew, Sr. but did have the pleasure of meeting his son, Andy. I believe he is the one who painted the portrait of JFK.

Where are ya stayin', IK?


- Innkeeper - 07-18-2001 05:19 AM

With Mother's sisterly cousin in Ellicott City. Putting a trip together that includes a couple of days in south-central New York, near Cooperstown. Plan to check out the Ommegang Brewery, while Mother checks out some local gardens. Then we're going to visit friends in Lancanster, PA for three days, during which time, we hope to get up to Blue Mountain Vinyards in New Tripoli. Then two nights in Ellicott City including this day trip. On the way home we hope to spend a night on Staten Island, not going into the city. There is a fabulous German restaurant on the island, and it's Fest Time.

[This message has been edited by Innkeeper (edited 07-18-2001).]


- wondersofwine - 07-18-2001 07:53 AM

Some wine shops in Ellicott City may still carry Montbray wines produced by Dr. Hamilton Mowbray. He was a professor at Johns Hopkins who became interested in wines after spending time at Cambridge University. He bought a dairy farm near Westminster, MD and planted vines and began making wines. Came up with some more than decent wines over the years. He also taught noncredit classes in wine appreciation at the University of Maryland Center of Continuing Education or Adult Education or whatever its called. I took a couple wine classes from him after returning from my first tour in Germany.

[This message has been edited by wondersofwine (edited 07-18-2001).]


- Innkeeper - 08-28-2001 05:04 AM

Here are the details on the Soup & Wine Fest. It will be on Sunday, September 9, from 11 AM till 5 PM. It will be under the tent in the middle of Kennett Square. The deal is you buy books of tickets, each ticket costing $1. Discounted books of tickets can be purchased in advance, e.g. 25 tickets for $20. Each ticket gets you a taste of soup or wine. A whole glass of wine will run 3 or 4 tickets depending on the quality of the wine.

Still plan to be there.


- Innkeeper - 09-19-2001 01:32 PM

Well, we did get to the Mushroom Soup & Wine Festival in Kennett Square on Sunday, September 9. We had a wonderful time, and a great day; albeit just two days before a horrible day. We will definitely to go back again, but hope to shorten the learning curve for some of you planning for next year or beyond.

When we got there we found blocks and blocks of vendors (mostly decent) and many other events of the main Mushroom Festival going on. Our event was divided into two tents, one for soup and another for wine. You bought tickets at the gate or picked up advanced sale ones. The tickets ($1 each) got you a soup or wine tasting, or with three or more, a full glass of wine. The reason for the two tents was to separate underage soups tasters from the wine. Wine tasters got a special band around their wrists. We opted to go to the soup tent first, and then the wine tasting. This was a mistake. The smart thing to do would be to go to the wine tasting first and taste three or four wines that might go with the soup. Then go to the soup tent, and pick up three or four soups that looked to your liking by ingredients, look, or smell. Take these back to the wine tent, by a glass of the wine you liked best, then sit down at an available table and taste soup, washed down with the wine.

The soups were wonderful. Most of the participating restaurants gave you a half to three quarter cup taste and would willing give you a second spoon for your partner. The Kennett Square Inn that Mike Dutton recommended was not in evidence. We liked best the soups from Hugo's Inn and the Mendenhall Inn, two diametrically different places. The soup from the dinning facility at Longwood Gardens was also excellent. Hugo's is just outside the gate from Longwood, and does not look like much. We had been there before, and all four of us agreed their soup is still out of this world. I split my ticket and voted for both Hugo's and Mendenhall, but the other three voted exclusively for Hugo's.

The most impressive winery at the wine tasting was, as you might have guessed, was Chaddsford Winery from right around the corner. Their wines were clearly superior to all the others. Their '98 Merican, a Meritage type blend, was the hit of the show. It was selling at the show for $24.50, but normally ran in the mid thirties. At either price it was competitive with Californian Meritages at two or three times the price. Their Pinot Grigio was also competitive with the best from Italy. At $17.00 the price was right in line with those. All Chaddsford's wines were roughly double those from all the other Pennsylvania Wineries.

Other that we liked were Blue Mountain Vineyards (cab, chambourcin, riesling), Presque Island Wine Cellars (pinot and cab), Mantawney Creek (almost all their stuff). We brought back Mantawney Creek Dolcetto and Pinot Grigio. We plan to visit them next summer, and Presque Island on our next trip west. They are in the Lake Erie AVA that includes parts of New York, Pennsylvania, and Ohio.

Hope to see more of you there next year.


- mrdutton - 10-03-2001 04:36 PM

Next year, sounds like a good idea. Close by plus we could visit the parents in Northern Delaware.


This year, sounds like you had a great time and thanks for the lesson's learned!