Parker’s Grille | 84 Fall | Halsey’s

The setting:  Parker’s, Seneca Falls. A summer night.

The scene:  A friend and I walk in, it’s late.  I know I’m hungry but I’m not sure what to get.  That’s when I see Kristen of The Buffalonian Catering Company, seated at a nearby table with a plate of wings.

I mean, she’s from Buffalo… so I already know they’ll be good. 

We quickly have a seat, I order a beer ( from Fleur De Lis of course)  and the waiter comes by to take our order.

I believe the conversation went something like this:
“Welcome to Parkers, what can I get you guys?”

I’m looking over the menu but I already know what to do.

“I like Hot Wings.” 
“Oh we’ve got hot wings.  But we’ve also got DEATH WISH wings.”

My friend seems nervous.  “I’ll take mild.”  He says.

“You know you can do 6 and 6 on the dozen special, right?”
Our fate has been decided.  And long story short, they were HOT.  And amazing.

The shrimp basket we split on the side was great too!

But great & amazing really doesn’t just sum up my wings, they’re also the perfect words to describe local restaurateur Pete Mitchell’s impressive portfolio of restaurants.  There’s also a Parker’s in Newark, in Auburn, and Geneva.  Not only that, if you’re in the mood to treat yourself, next door to Parker’s Grille in Seneca Falls is the lovely 84 Fall, with some very exciting tapas to try.  I’m still thinking about the orange sesame crispy cauliflower I had there last time I went.

And if you’re in Geneva, there’s Halsey’s.  Home to legendary meat balls and fantastic pizzas.  Last time I stopped by Halseys, the man, the myth, the legend, Pete Mitchell himself was there saddled up at the bar.

We spoke on his love of video games, the Finger Lakes, and the hard work that he’s put in to make these very special destinations happen.  It was a short, but inspiring conversation.

 I can’t wait to see what he cooks up next!

Parker’s Grille Website

84 Fall Website

Halsey’s Geneva Website

Oh, and how could I forget. DID YOU KNOW? Mr. Mitchell also writes a continuing op-ed column for The Finger Lakes Times, which you can read here.

Mightea Boba

Spring is finally in the air! I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for some fun in the sun. And to me, nothing says warmer weather like cold drinks… maybe a refreshing iced tea? OR even better, BUBBLE TEA ! Yeah, that’s the ticket!

Boba ( Bubble ) tea was invented in Taiwan in the 1980s. But you don’t need to travel far for one anymore, dear Finger Lakes fanatics, because the Grover Family (Trevor, Carol, Felicia, Caitlyn and Rhen) have created Mightea Boba, right in Canandaigua. Introduced to bubble tea while visiting Buffalo, NY, the Grover’s have lived in Canandaigua for over ten years, and always wanted to start a family business. It was love at first sip and they opened the doors in October of 2017.

Carol and Trevor Grover

But what exactly is Boba tea and how is it made?

Boba tea is a sweet drink that combines flavored teas of your choise with tapioca pearls. The pearls (bubbles) are sucked up through a very big straw. They’re chewy and fun to eat. Kind of like eating gummy candies, but in your tea. At Mightea Boba there are over 30 flavors of milk and fruit teas to choose from. And you can even tell them how sweet you want it! Passion Fruit, Mango and Lychee, are just a few of the many possibiliTEAS. See what I did there? I can’t take full credit though, Trevor said it to me first 😉

The Grover family makes all of the boba in house daily. They were kind enough to send some pictures of how it’s all made!

raw boba before its boiled

here are the tapioca pearls boiling in water

After boiling they are rinsed

here they are mixed with sugar and ready to serve!

Mightea Boba not only operates out of their storefront, they have a location at the Windmill in Penn Yann, and also have their very own food truck! They can show up at festivals, parties, shows.. you name it. Not only that, you never know who might show up WITH them. Mightea Boba loves to partner with other local food concepts, offering pairings with Geneva Gelato, The Buffalonian and Valhalla. When I stopped by, Abba’s Cart was there grilling up some tasty looking chicken Spiedies.

These partnerships with others in the community are what cultivate such an exciting, wonderful place to be a part of! I can’t wait to see what they cook up next.

Mightea Boba
3225 State Rt.364, Suite 65
Canandaigua, NY 14424
(585) 412-9170
Instagram: @mighteaboba

Valhalla Cafe and Catering

For Scott Horrocks, cooking has been a life-long passion. Born and raised in Gorham, NY, Scott attended Clarkson University before deciding to turn his dream into a career. Fast forward to today and Scott’s been cooking professionally for 14 years! He’s also the Owner and Founder of Valhalla Café and Catering.

Left to right, Bacon Jam Burger, BBQ Chip Burger, Greens & Beans Burger. All: Awesome.

Fast Fact: In Norse mythology, Valhalla is a majestic hall in Asgard, where Viking warrior souls are said to dine with the Gods, in the company of Odin himself! Scott pays homage to this legendary folklore with cool illustrations like this one.

Here’s a roasted pork loin sandwich Valhalla whipped up recently with exceptional pride. It’s got arugula, goat cheese, caramelized onions, shredded apple and roasted butternut squash.

Valhalla spreads the word on local pop-up events via social media

I got the chance to catch Scott whipping up some fresh Chili at Bostrom Farms the morning after serving some amazing looking Grilled Cheese sandwiches over at Mightea Boba in Canandaigua and believe me, you gotta taste it all for yourself!

Scott Horrocks, Owner

Valhalla Cafe and Catering
Instagram: @Valhallacafeandcatering/
Valhalla currently operates seasonally out of the Wind Mill Market in Penn Yan, but he’s known to do pop-ups at local businesses year round as well, so you’ll never know where you might find him around the FLX! Check out his instagram for a ton of food pics to drool over.

Pizza Posto

There’s fewer foods I enjoy more in life than brick oven pizza. Simple yet amazingly tasty, give me some fresh sauce and melted cheese and I’m in pizza heaven. But have you ever wondered why brick oven pizza tastes so much better? Well, the answer is the high heat and faster cooking time. A brick oven’s fire bounces off the inside walls to crisp that crust right away. The process can be so speedy, that it’s possible to get a fresh pizza made to order… right from a food truck with a brick oven crammed into it! Right in Geneva. Oh, Finger Lakes, how I love you so. Let me count the ways….

What a view. Pizza Posto @ Muranda Cheese

Pizza Posto is the brainchild of HWS graduate Sam Solomon. Sam’s been building a buzz driving his truck all over, parking and popping up everywhere from Monaco’s Coffee to the Cracker Factory. Sam started his Pizza business after winning the Stu Lieblein ’90 pitch contest. The challenge had many young entrepreneurs present their business vision for a $10,000 check and the ability to be paired with a mentor – but Sam came out on top. And wanting to compliment the many wineries and brewery scene, the truck was built.
And the winner is… Sam Solomon!

Sam not only was able to find a brick oven, he somehow crammed it into a beautiful new truck. He prepares the dough himself, buys his cheese locally from Muranda, and makes each pizza to order from scratch. He says when it’s really busy he can pump out 40-50 an hour!
Pizza Posto @ HWS Homecoming Event

I got the chance to talk to Sam last week, and was humbled by his enthusiasm and passion. What I really found interesting was the breakdown in how Sam comes up with his prices. Pizza Posto is a step above the rest in quality, but when he measures his pies by the inch, he’s priced right in line. So there’s no reason to not #treatyourself to that brick oven excellence. And once you go brick oven you’ll never go back.

Shout out to Sam for being a great part of what makes everyone love the FLX!

Pizza Posto


You can tell the moment you walk into Stan’s that a ton of attention was paid to the details. The beautiful exposed brick, amazingly ambient mood lighting; it’s a great place for a date night or just to have a few drinks with friends and family. With a menu that taps right into our amazing local craft beer, wine, produce and farm to table scene, Stan’s is a two floor venue that really knocks it out of the park.

A Typical Night at Stan’s

You want specialty Cocktails? You got ‘em. I’m never one to turn down a Negroni, and the Gingered Spice Rum one I had was made with just the right amount of everything to really hit the spot. My friend enjoyed a WeBe wheat beer he couldn’t stop talking about. Side Note: WeBe is brewed right in Geneva, NY

The burgers at Stan’s are the shining star of the food menu. And all of them are made with local farm to table meat. Stan’s has NINE different burger options to choose from, with all sorts of good stuff. Bacon-Bourbon onion jam on the Stan’s Way, a Utica Burger with Sopressata and Fontina Cheese, or if you’re really hungry: The Yard burger. Two smashed patties, bacon, blue cheese, fries, gravy, mushrooms and tomato on a brioche roll!!!

Stan’s isn’t just about the food though. Another exciting part of the many things that makes this destination such a unique place is the constantly rotating series of live events. Every Friday night there are acoustic sets from a variety of local musicians.

Stan’s is a passion project created by Lee Bieber, named after his father Stan. It’s an exciting place to keep coming back to right on Main Street in Waterloo, the birthplace of Memorial Day.
PS: The yard burger is in my top 5 of best burgers I’ve ever had! Two smashed patties, bacon, blue cheese, hand cut fries, gravy, mushrooms and tomato on a brioche roll. I was full for 2 days!

Stan’s Waterloo
7 E Main St, Waterloo, NY 13165
Phone: (315) 220-8342

Muranda Cheese Company

Muranda is a wonderful Cheese company and a true jewel of Waterloo. The reviews speak for themselves. A stop at Muranda is ranked #1 on Trip Advisor of things to do in the area. You can’t get better than that!

Founded by Tom and Nancy Murray way back in 1991, they started out focusing on just producing Milk. But that all changed when their cow, Muranda Oscar Lucinda broke a world record for milk production. We’re talking almost 68,000 pounds – or 8500 gallons of milk in just one year! And so, the Murray family decided it was time to put a real focus on cheese. They named the company after their legendary cow and the rest is history.

I’ve tried a bunch, but my favorite was the Lady of the Lake. It’s a Parmesan and Gouda blend I really enjoyed paired with a bottle of dry Riesling. (From Ravines in case you’re wondering.) I also really enjoyed the Bel Ciello, an Asiago and Provolone blend.

You can buy Muranda cheese on their website, or stop by the farm.
Many local restaurants use Muranda as well. I picked up a bunch at the Finger Lakes Welcome Center in Geneva as gifts for my friends.

The old barn on their property was completely renovated to serve the many visitors who stop by to try their excellent cheeses. It truly is a gorgeous space, and is also available to private events.
It’s exciting local businesses like Muranda that makes the Finger Lakes so wonderful.
Muranda Cheese Company
Open Daily 10AM-5PM
3075 Route 96 Waterloo, NY 13165
For buses and large groups they recommend contacting us ahead of time
phone: 315-651-0216

Cobblestone Coffee

Cobblestone Coffee

Cobblestone Coffee is roasted in Geneva, NY.

Dan from Cobblestone Coffee was born and raised in Waterloo, NY. He traveled the world while serving our country and has returned to Waterloo to raise his family and roast his excellent coffee! Dan roasts out of the Technology Farm in Geneva. You can find him set up in the warmer months at the Waterloo Rotary Market and the Seneca Falls Farmers Market. In addition, there’s plenty of excellent local businesses where you can grab of cup of his coffee anytime. Cafe 19 in Seneca Falls or the Finger Lakes Visitor Welcome Center are just some of the many.

The Cobblestones behind the coffee are from Dan’s home, and the inspiration behind the name of the business.

Customers can get their Coffee ground or whole beans, in a variety of flavors. Medium roasts, dark roasts, single origins and blends, Cobblestone offers something for every coffee lover. And best of all, for customers who live in the local area (Geneva, Waterloo, Seneca Falls, Clyde, Ovid, Romulus, Interlaken), You can get your Cobblestone Coffee delivered right to your front door — no charge for delivery! For those who live outside the local area, they ship using USPS Priority Mail—for a small shipping and handling fee of $5.99–regardless of how many bags you buy. You can purchase Cobblestone Coffee online via their website here.

A portion of every purchase from Cobblestone Coffee is donated to the Special Operations Warrior Foundation, which provides free college tuition to children of our fallen Spec Ops heroes (Navy SEALs, Army , Marine Corps, and Air Force Special Forces). Cobblestone is proud to have donated $1,500 in 2017, with plans for donating $2,500 in 2018.

My personal favorite was the Brazil Medium Roast. I took some home from the Waterloo Market and went through the whole Mason Jar Dan gave me in a week! I really enjoyed making it in my Moka pot every morning and looked forward to every cup while it lasted. I already need a refill!

Dan is ready to roast

Address: 500 Technology Farm Drive. Geneva, NY 14456
Phone: (315) 246-7466