Summer is flying by and the phones are very busy with party bookings for the fall. We have more parties this September than I can ever remember. The Naples economy seems more solid than most other urban areas and this bodes well for all of us. The garden has its mid summer look – lots of heavy pruning to keep everything under control. The orchids are being fertilized every two weeks (Note to self: fertilize today), and are showing new leaf growth. Keeping the snails at bay is VERY important. I’ll keep fertilizing them until we see the first spikes with buds. We’ve been nurturing the ivy geraniums that line the front porch as I’d been led to believe that one could not keep them viable during Naples’ hot, wet and humid summer months. Lots of TLC and fertilizer seems to have busted that myth. We’re trying to sprout some clippings from the ivy geraniums. I love the hybrid we currently have!
Sukie is in Oregon on vacation and to do a little wine tasting. For those of you who truly love wine, take the time to come by Tony’s Off Third one day this fall and talk wine with Sukie. Her wine knowledge is truly amazing. It’s so amazing in fact, that we are proud to announce that Ridgway’s wine lists received the “Award of Excellence” from the Wine Spectator. Remember, Ridgway has two wine lists, one for every day dining, the other for those who want to dig a little deeper in to the great world of wine!
I am working on the new menus for the fall. My mind is traveling to some new places. I’m thinking more about vegetables, beans, grains, greens, and strong tastes. Not just healthy but fun and current. Our family time in Vermont next month will be one of extreme experimentation.
The baked goods and wine sales at Tony’s Off Third have also been excellent this summer. And Maryann, Lexie and I are working on some new items to roll out in mid October. Lexie has a collection of her specialty cakes on display in the store. Come by and see what she can do for you for a special occasion cake. I am continuing on my quest to show everyone in Naples that Tony’s Off Third has the best Key Lime Tart in Naples. Stop by and try one, I think you’ll agree. On a final note, my wife Wynne is an avid quilter and just finished a day-long quilting class last weekend hosted at Ridgway where she and the girls enjoyed a day of friendship, quilting and great food. Wynne sewed a quilt when were in Vermont last fall that she is donating to the Henry Sheldon Museum in Middlebury, Vermont. The museum is run by our dear friend Bill Brooks. Wynne and I give back to our fall vacation town as much as we can. The quilt (pictured at left) is being raffled at $5.00 per ticket (or 5 for $20.00). I’d like to remind all those who have asked for our support over the years to please support Wynne in her effort! The quilt is fabulous and perhaps a Naples friend will be lucky enough to win. You can call Wynne at 239.262.5500 for your raffle tickets or call the museum . Look forward to seeing you on the front porch for Happy Hour or in the dining room for Crispy Fish this Friday!