Imagine my surprise when I was looking at the agenda for our stay and saw that the dinner the last night was at the Stables. The Stables are a beautiful new structure that was built for the Grand Hotel and it is where they keep their horses, wagons and taxis for their guests. We were downstairs at the Grand Hotel before the taxi/shuttle service to the Stables were going to leave, so we stopped at the Audubon and had some Chandon California Brut Classic NV to keep the festive spirit going. Chandon in California still uses Methode Traditionelle to make there sparkling wine in the States. It was a fine wine to have in the late afternoon and then we went to join everyone on the steps off of the “Porch” to go to the Stables. My Bride and a few others felt adventurous and decided to walk there, I thought I would enjoy the ride, and later I found out that they had only started the walk, when another taxi from the hotel picked them up, as the taxi was going to the Stables anyways. I am really glad that I took the taxi as we were taken around the backside of the hotel and we passed some magnificent mansions that one would not normally see, unless one was on a boat looking at the homes on the coastline. As with anything associated with the Grand Hotel, like the Woods restaurant that was not far from our destination, which I have, wrote about before, the structure and grounds were magnificent. Nothing like one would imagine going to a stable would be and I have even been to the stables at Churchill Downs. Besides actually storing and maintaining their collection of draft horses, the Stables has a beautiful collection of carriages and sleighs that were actually from the Island. Some had been restored and others were still in fine shape. Each vehicle had a sign giving the history of it, some of the notable owners, and one was actually used to transport a couple of different Presidents of the United States that had come to the island during the years. Since I enjoy museums, this was a delight to behold.
Besides the actual stables off on one side, there were two large rooms that contained the collection of carriages and sleighs and they were on the perimeters of the two rooms. The larger of the two rooms had long tables arranged for dinner, and the smaller room, which was not small, was set up for buffet service and another table with a fully stocked bar for everyone to partake of. On the backside of the Stables overlooking the paddock as well as a view of the lake, were several large barbeques and a whole squad of cooks getting ready to prepare dinner for everyone and what a spread was being offered. There were a collection of assorted salads, shrimp and different smoked fish platters; cheese and crackers, there were also huge chafing dishes holding baked beans, potatoes, vegetables as well as the entrees of the evening. We were being offered barbequed chicken, hamburgers and hot dogs (which got the children in attendance happy), smoked and pulled pork and steaks. After the dinner, one set of tables that was set up for the buffet was changed over to a sweet table with all of the wonderful desserts that the Grand Hotel was known for.
It was easy for me to pass up the beer and the liquor, and I was going straight to the collection of wines being poured. It was the same collection of wines that we had the night before at the reception at the Jockey Club. The house wines of the Grand Hotel; Michigan Sparkling Wine and a Semi-Dry Riesling, and California Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. So once again L. Mawby, Chateau Grand Traverse and Trinchero Estates were the wineries that were represented. All the wines were also available for purchase in the gift shop at the hotel as well. My Bride and I stayed with the Sparkling wine, and then had some Cabernet Sauvignon with our steaks. A wonderful way to have dinner with all the other guests that were there for the meeting and then we decided to walk back afterwards, to work off dinner.