Five Berkshire County farms have been awarded grants totaling $65,625 from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs. Funded projects help recipients with environmental and economic issues on their farms.
The Ag-Energy Grant and Agricultural Environmental Enhancement Program (AEEP) are two of several within the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (DAR)’s Division of Agricultural Conservation and Technical Assistance. The division’s mission is to provide technical assistance, training, conservation and funding to promote economically viable and environmentally sound agricultural practices in Massachusetts.
AEEP Grant Awardees:
- Broadlawn Farm, Adams:
$25,000–—water runoff management
- Susan B. Anthony Farm, Adams: $10,000—a well for water
Ag-Energy Grant Awardees:
- Ioka Valley Farm, Hancock:
$16,916—15kW photovoltaic system
- Mill Brook Sugarhouse, Lenox: $10,500—reverse osmosis equipment to reduce water content in the production of maple syrup
- Maple Shade Farm, Sheffield:
$3,209—variable-speed pump for milking dairy cows
Mezze Bistro + Bar, Williamstown, has hired a new chef: Pedro Rangel, a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Chicago. Rangel will continue Mezze’s mission of focusing on local, seasonal ingredients while adding his own creative and contemporary ethnic small plates and dishes. We wish Chef Rangel the best. MezzeRestaurant.com
The owners of Gypsy Joynt, Great Barrington, plan to open Gypsy Joynt Jive on Bridge Street. The new place will include video games, pinball machines, ping-pong and other game tables. Opening in the afternoon to young adults, evenings will be restricted to 21 and older with full bar service. Food service will include breakfast and tacos. We look forward to another fun “Joynt.”
Brothers Tony and Michael Mazzeo, owners of Mazzeo’s Ristorante in Pittsfield, have opened Mazcots Sports Bar & Grill on Route 7 in Lenox. After a major renovation and the installation of large-screen TVs, the restaurant has a new look and feel serving upscale bar food, with a full line of beer and liquor … a great place to watch the Red Sox win another series. Go, Mazcots!
We hear that the space formerly occupied by Fiori in Great Barrington has been taken over by a restaurant from Winsted, Connecticut: Mario’s Tuscan Grill, due to open soon. We welcome all quality venues to the Berkshires. Best of luck.
Prairie Whale is the new name for Bell and Anchor in Great Barrington. Trademark infringement issues caused the name change; however, everything else has stayed the same in this hot spot.
The “Buy Local” marketing campaigns of Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) have received a $70,000 grant from the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (DAR). The grant is for marketing and raising public awareness of local agriculture year round and for special events that bring farmers together with commercial and institutional consumers in Hampden, Hampshire and Franklin counties. The grant is shared with the Berkshire Grown program in Berkshire County. CISA is headquartered in South Deerfield. BuyLocalFood.org
John Delmolino is constructing a new building at 165 Main St., at the corner of Cottage Street, Great Barrington. The finished building, according to John, will be 2,500 square feet of retail space suitable for a 99-seat restaurant, including an additional outdoor dining deck at street level. It will also include 2,500 square feet of embanked basement off the rear parking area. No tenant as yet. 413-329-0060.
Pera Mediterranean Bistro has opened on Spring Street in Williamstown. Menu items include falafel, pasta, kabobs and lots of fish, with complete dinners at affordable prices. Owner Fahri Karakaya also owns MediTerra in North Adams. Continued best, Fahri
The Rainbow Restaurant at 109 First St., Pittsfield, has completed an extensive renovation. New owners John and Luisi Economou expected to be open by early December, serving wood-fired pizza, salads and other casual dishes, sourcing locally when in season. 413-443-0004; DineRainbow.com
Keep Berkshires Farming is a regional initiative started by the Great Barrington Agricultural Commission in 2010, created to uphold the ideal that a rural community with a viable farming industry should be allowed to provide fresh, nutritious food to its residents. KBF will make a presentation on Dec. 7 at Hancock Shaker Village, Hancock, to present issues they feel need to be addressed. KeepBerkshiresFarming.org
When Erik Pizani and Nathan Girard were faced with the opportunity to purchase the 100-year-old St. Stanislaw Hall on East Hoosac Street in Adams, they jumped at the chance. Both had fond memories of attending weddings, reunions and other events there—it was a destination for them.
Once purchased, it became a question: What to do with it?
Deciding it needed to be upgraded and modernized, they jumped right into a massive renovation to turn the inside of the historic building into the Adams Ale House—a restaurant and bar with event space and banquet hall.
Finally open, the Adams Ale House serves casual fare and bar food, sandwiches, loaded burgers and big salads, plus a $5 kids menu. The Ale House has an extensive selection of bottled and draft beers and ales.
Very ambitious. We wish them continued success. 413-743-2161; AdamsAleHouse.com
The Boston Public Market, with the support of Governor Patrick and the Commonwealth, is leading the effort to open a year-round 28,000-square-foot public market in the Haymarket T-station building on the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway, in downtown Boston’s North End, expected to open next June. Those interested in vending at the future market should visit BostonPublicMarket.org and submit your information.
A group of investors has purchased the property formerly known as the Dakota restaurant on Route 7, Pittsfield. Plans are to renovate and reopen sometime in 2014, keeping some of the Dakota’s food favorites and adding an Asian flair to the mix. Jia Ming Zheng, the investor’s group manager, owns Koto Hibachi Steakhouse in Pittsfield.
High Lawn Farm has just released their new line of premium ice cream made from 100% pure Jersey cream blended with all-natural flavors; chocolate, vanilla, strawberry and coffee. At press time available in: Great Barrington at Berkshire Co-op, Guido’s and Big Y; in Lee at Big Y; in Pittsfield at Guido’s.Just in time for holiday pies!
New piglets are due at Cricket Creek Farm on New Year’s Eve—stop by the farm to visit them, and don’t forget the Champagne!
Edible Berkshires is a local, independently owned publication dedicated to covering the unique culinary culture of Western Massachusetts.