Queretaro: Colonial Charm in the Highlands of Mexico

My first morning in Queretaro, about a 90 minute drive north of Mexico City, I walked along the cobblestone streets in the city’s historic center to the fairy tale castle-like La Casa de la Marquesa, once a private home built in the 1756, now a restaurant and hotel. The menu reflects the vast citrus groves,…

A Visit to Julius Renner Weinhaus & Weinkellerei in Historic Oberkirch

Following the Muhlbach Stream as it  gently flows through downtown Oberkirch, a marvelous collection of timber-framed, multi-stories houses, cobblestone streets, brightly painted shutters and window boxes overflowing with cascading blooms, we bounce along in Martin Renner’s topless  Range Rover into the vast orchards and vineyards, climbing the ever narrowing road up the verdant hills of…

South Bend’s Magnificent Tippecanoe Place

Built in 1889, Tippecanoe Place, a fine dining restaurant in South Bend is an elaborately gabled and turreted 24,000-square-foot Richardsonian Romanesque-style house which belonged to Clem Studebaker, one of the Studebaker auto magnates. Perfectly preserved, it’s about what having it all meant back in the late 1800s. With 40 rooms, 20 fireplaces and ball room,…

Bridgeton Mill: Grinding Away for Almost Two Centuries

The wheels of Bridgeton Mill, a three story building next to a 268-foot covered bridge, both painted a matching red and rising above a large waterfall, are always working overtime. “We sell about 40,000 pounds of flour, pancake mix and cornmeal every year,” says owner Mike Roe who was grinding away for the Indiana State…

Making Maultaschen at Maulbronn Monastery

In a room where flickering flames highlight low beamed ceilings blackened with centuries of smoke and glass windows wavy from almost a millennium of time give views onto a cobblestone courtyard bordered by half-timbered buildings. I am at Maulbronn Monastery learning to make maultaschen, a centuries old dish that originated  here.  If I succeed, I’ll…

Magnolia Springs, Alabama

On a languid afternoon after too much time in the sun in Gulf Shores, Alabama, I decided to follow the coastline  in Magnolia Springs, a small town along the headwaters of the Magnolia River. With jasmine and bougainvillea in bloom, it seems like a true Southern Gothic (in the good sense of the word) type…

Paris in Stride: An Insider’s Walking Guide

Imagine strolling through Paris with a friend, one who knows the greatest little patisseries, cafes, outdoor markets and shops tucked along winding cobbled streets. Together the two of us try on amazingly chic designer dresses at La boutique Didier Ludot and amble through the courtyard gardens and gaze at the Swedish art work at Institut…