At The Artisans at Lake Placid Lodge, Executive Chef Mark Hannon has embraced the farmed and foraged spoils of the mountains to create dishes distinct to the Adirondacks.
Hannon has traveled the world, serving as the culinary mastermind for hotels and restaurants in Chicago, New York City, Australia, and Thailand, with access to large budgets and ingredients from all over the world. It might seem odd that he would eye Lake Placid Lodge then, but he said he had been hoping for a place in the rustic resort’s kitchen for years.
“I thought it would be great to have a job close to my family,” he said, “and this is a great place to raise a kid.”
In his time at Lake Placid Lodge, Hannon has discovered that the spoils of the mountain come to him from farmers and foragers, and that he never knows quite what he’ll get his hands on from week to week.
“You’re at nature’s pace up here. Whatever you can get, you get,” Hannon added. “There are little things you try to find that are unique to the Adirondacks.”
With that in mind, here are four dishes that combine local vegetables, mushrooms, and meats that perfectly embody Hannon’s approach, featuring the best the Lake Placid Lodge dining has to offer.
This ever-changing vegetarian dish resembles a painting on a ceramic canvas and may be the best example of the use-what-you-have attitude Hannon cultivates. Diners can always expect fresh vegetables and fruits puréed and streaked across the plate, but the exact composition will vary based on what Hannon has access to. Expect light watermelon and mint mingling on summer plates, and heartier beets and turnips in the fall.
Scallops with Maitake Mushrooms
The famed, uber-nutritious hen of the woods mushrooms hand-foraged on the slopes of the mountains are about as Adirondacks as it gets. Rich, earthy, and briny, this dish seamlessly blends flavors from vastly different elevations.
Amuse-Bouche: Cured Scottish Ocean Trout, Roasted Fingerling Potato
The perfectly crisped trout skin and succulent potato are the main attraction, but the presentation is the showstopper here. The small bite fits into a silver spoon that leans on a black birch branch dotted with purple and blue blooms.
Spring Pea Soup
Come in the early months of 2016, and take the chill out of the mountain air by spooning up locally grown peas, foraged mushrooms, and prosciutto in this Adirondacks’ twist on split pea soup.
The Artisan’s Experience
While the menu changes often at Artisans, here are a few prized experiences to enjoy during your next stay at Lake Placid Lodge.
Beer & Spirits Pairings
Sample the Lake Placid Lodge IPA alongside a dish, or linger over a smoky whiskey alongside Hannon’s best recommendation. The beer, wine, and spirit pairings are one of the better culinary experiences you can have in the country, never mind the state.
On the Wing
Every Saturday, local falconers bring their agile, docile birds of prey to the lodge. The bold can pet and hold them, while everyone else can watch the swooping showmanship from the restaurant proper.
Cool Air, Warm Treats
Come for the brilliant fall foliage and look to the lodge afterward for fresh-mulled apple cider and crumbly, homemade doughnuts for the full autumn-in–Lake Placid experience.
The Spirit of Collaboration
Hannon is mum on the names, but expect shining stars of the Northeast New York dining scene to make cameos at the head of the kitchen late this fall and next year.
Where to Stay Lake Placid Lodge