New Fingery Lakes winery to open tasting room on South Broadway next year

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Another Finger Lakes winery, Thirsty Owl Wine Company will be opening a new tasting room, eatery and wine store in the former home of the Kimberly Inn at 184 South Broadway next year.

In early October, Saratoga Shoots wrote a blog post about the rumors circulating of the possible opening of a Thirsty Owl tasting room on South Broadway.

On Monday, Oct. 31, Ted Cupp, who owns the wine company with son Jon Cupp, confirmed the speculation.

“I just purchased the building — we’re really in the early stages of the planning process right now,” Cupp said.

Over the next several months, the Cupps will have to tackle the often lengthy process of obtaining a liquor license and submitting plans for the business to the city planning board.

If all goes according to plan, the Thirsty Owl tasting room should be up and running by July 1, 2012.

“We hope to have a pretty large tasting room and some light fare, but we haven’t decided what that will be just yet,” Cupp said.

The business will be operated on the ground floor of the property and the former inn’s second floor will be leased as some sort of residence.

“This will be our first tasting room other than our site on Cayuga Lake,” Cupp said. “My family raised horses and we’ve been coming to Saratoga for years — it’s a great area.”

The Thirsty Owl Wine Company is based in the town of Ovid in the Finger Lakes region. I will be speaking to Cupp in about six weeks once the plans for the Saratoga Springs tasting room are more solidified so stay tuned for more information on this story. 


The Cupcake Lab closes doors to prepare for new location

SARATOGA SPRINGS -- While I was away on a brief vacation this weekend, I received an email from Mike Phillips, co-owner of the Cupcake Lab, formerly tucked away in the Roohan Realty building at 517 Broadway.

On Sunday, Oct. 23 Phillips and his wife Elizabeth announced it would be their last day open as the Cupcake Lab (or Lab for short) at that location. 

But for the loyal customer base faithful to the Lab since it opened - never fear. Phillips will be re-opening as the new and improved Lab at Saratoga in a new location soon to be announced.

Mike and Elizabeth posted this statement on their website and Facebook page: 

It is with bittersweet emotion that we tell you today, Sunday10/23/11, is the last day The Lab will be open in our current location. Although we will miss our huge open space and our Long Alley neighbors…after 2 years of explaining where “Long Alley” is we are moving. We wish to thank each and every one of you for being our customers and our friends, we can’t wait to welcome you to our new location. Please stay tuned to this FB page or our website for our new location coming soon. We will look forward to seeing you very soon at The new Lab Saratoga!
Elizabeth and Mike

Stay tuned for more on this story tomorrow.


Four women-owned businesses in the Saratoga Marketplace to host grand opening event this weekend

SARATOGA SPRINGS — The ladies of the lower level in the Saratoga Marketplace at 454 Broadway have pooled their resources to host a joint (and somewhat belated) grand opening event taking place Saturday, Oct. 22 and Sunday, Oct. 23.

Over the past five months, four new businesses — all for women, by women — opened in the Saratoga Marketplace, breathing life into what has long been a quiet lower corridor.

There are five women behind these four businesses: Aleah Homer of The Body Lounge and Dust Cosmetics; Kendal and Keriann McGillycuddy of McGillycuddy's Naturals; Karen Score of Yoga Mandali and the Studio Store and Lisa Alden of Fiat Feminae.

This weekend, the group is putting on a collaborative "grand opening" where guests will be able to shop four locations and receive special discounts, free food & refreshments and enter for giveaways.

Here's the gist of these businesses, all with links to the "In the Biz" story I wrote about each one when it opened and or moved.

The Body Lounge & Dust Cosmetics: Early this June, Aleah Homer made her dream of opening an L.A. or Manhattan-style spa come true when she opened the Body Lounge. The "unique" spa offers new-age treatments such as an oxygen bar, organic teeth whitening and acupuncture. Homer also sells Dust, her original line of organic mineral cosmetics, at the spa.

McGillycuddy's Naturals: Kendal and Keriann McGillycuddy were next to enter the Marketplace's lower level shortly after Homer in June. The sisters' mother started making natural, handmade soaps for the girls when they were young because they often suffered from sensitive skin irritated by the chemicals in most pharmaceutical body products. Eventually the soap-making became a family run business with soap-making shared between their mother and Kendal and Keriann. This summer, the sisters led the way in opening a retail shop, McGillycuddy's Naturals, which offers all natural, hand-crafted, bath and body products.

Yoga Mandali's Studio Store: Karen Score, owner of Yoga Mandali opened the Studio Store this August in the former location of the main Yoga Mandali studio on the lower level of the Marketplace. Yoga Mandali's studio moved to the upstairs level, above the retail shops and Score had always hoped to open a joint retail outlet. When her old space became available she seized the opportunity and opened the Studio Store, a yoga-wear and accessories shop that carries quality brands in athletic wear and a variety of other items from yoga mats to books and CDs.

Fiat Feminae: The latest lady entrepreneur to join the lower level is Lisa Alden, owner of the lingerie boutique Fiat Feminae. Alden opened the European-style lingerie shop on the second floor of 489 Broadway this summer, but began to find the upstairs location was intimidating customers on the street. When the space opened up in the Marketplace, Alden immediately signed the lease and in less than a week had relocated to the lower level in early October. Fiat Feminae carries exotic European lingerie, signature corsets and more.

This weekend customers will receive 20% off at the above locations. They can also enter for a grand prize giveaway, participate in a scavenger hunt with prizes and enjoy free food and refreshments (I'm sold).

The sales and special activities run from 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22 and from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 23.

As a fellow female, let me just channel the Spice Girls and say, "Girl Power." Rock on.


UPDATED: Big Apple Pizza now Pizza 7 with expanded dinner menu

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Earlier this spring, Hot Dog Charlie's, a late night favorite at 7 Caroline Street, was replaced by Caroline's third pizzeria, Big Apple Pizza.

A sign outside the Caroline Street eatery that reads, "Pizza 7" caught my eye a couple of weeks ago. At the time I wasn't able to get ahold of the manager, Chris Linn, to speak to about the full details behind the change.

Since my first post about the new Pizza 7, I've connected with Linn and learned the motivation behind the name change.

As a locally owned and operated shop, the owners wanted to avoid being associated with several Albany chains or any other corporation under the name Big Apple Pizza, Linn said.

"We're proud to be located and downtown Saratoga and would like to express our sincere thanks to those who have supported us so far," he added.

With the name swap comes a beefed up menu - which now features full dinner items like lasagna and stuffed shells along with the regular pizza, salad, subs and wings options.

"It's dinner delivered right to your door," Linn said. "Start off with an appetizer or garlic bread, enjoy your dinner of chicken parmigiana and finish it off with an authentic cannoli, slice of tiramisu, baklava or  cheesecake."

Pizza 7 delivers its full menu every day during business hours. 

They are also offering several noteworthy lunch specials - Before 3 p.m., customers can get any two slices and a drink for $4.00 or any sub, salad, wrap or gyro for $5 (a steal if I do say so myself).

For more information about Pizza 7 call 580-2000 or click here to view the full menu.


Businesses to host Halloween-themed events this weekend

Get in the Halloween spirit at a masquerade ball in the spooky Adelphi Hotel.
 SARATOGA SPRINGS — You couldn't ask for a better Halloween bash venue than the historic (and rumored to be haunted) Adelphi Hotel at 365 Broadway.

This Saturday, Oct. 15, local not-for-profit group ASPIRe N.Y., will host its third annual masquerade ball from 6:30 to 10 p.m.

ASPIRe stands for Autism Spectrum Peer Integration and Recreation and the organization is founded on a community-based approach, which provides recreation and activity groups for teens and young adults with Asperger's syndrome and a range of other Autism spectrum social disorders.

A major fundraiser for the organization, the masquerade ball will feature a dinner buffet provided by Augie's restaurant in Ballston Spa, live music by Big Medicine, dancing and a cash bar.

Guests can also bid online for a variety of silent auction items provided by local businesses and artisans before the event by clicking here

Tickets for the event are just $50 and if you bring guests, it's $45 for each additional person.

Guests are encouraged to get in the Halloween spirit and enjoy the Victorian atmosphere of the Adelphi by wearing costumes or dressing in evening wear with masks. 

A fun night for a good cause is bound to make this an enjoyable evening for all who attend.

Find out your destiny at Chic Underneath's tarot party
SARATOGA SPRINGS — It might be a lingerie and waxing boutique, but Chic Underneath will draw all sorts of customers to its doors at 7 Spring Street this weekend for a special tarot party from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 14.

Chic Underneath owners Lauren Plasencia and Kailyn McLaughlin have Mary Shimp scheduled to give free tarot readings during the event. 

While you're waiting to find out your fortune, guests can sip champagne, taste some snacks and shop plenty of special deals on lingerie and undergarments.

I had the privilege to attend Chic Underneath's opening party and I give this boutique a special nod because the event was above and beyond. Both Plasencia and McLaughlin's family members provided a spread of gourmet treats, champagne with strawberries and a selection of beer stocked at the door ready to be thrust into the hand of any uncomfortable male customer. 

While I can't guarantee this event will have all the bells and whistles of the last one, knowing the owners and their families I feel confident in saying this should be a great event to start your weekend.


10/07-10/09 Weekend Insider Roundup

Welcome to your second October weekend! The forecast is finally clear skies and sunshine so get outside and celebrate fall's favorite month. My top pick is the do-it-yourself Saratoga Farms Tour, where you get to go to whichever farms you please, stay however long you want and sample delicious local products along the way (also a good time to pick out the perfect pumpkin in preparation for Halloween carving). Keep reading about other local events in the area this weekend ranging from a little TLC at the spa to an old-school car show in B.Spa.




Treat yourself to a spa treatment this Saturday 

  • Health & Wellness/ Spa Appreciation Day. Pamper yourself this weekend at Kaivalya Spa & Wellness Center for Spa Appreciation Day. They will be offering major discounts on spa services including a scrumptious sounding pomegranate and green tea massage at $35 for 30 minutes and $50 for 60 minutes; a huge steal on Swedish massages for just $45 an hour and various other discounts on body scrubs, facials and reflexology. Unwind without breaking the bank - go ahead, you deserve it. Kaivalya Spa & Wellness Center, 7 Wells Street Saratoga Springs. Saturday, Oct. 8. 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (209-1150 www.kaivalya.us). FREE entry.

Go on a DIY farm tour
  • Saratoga County Farm Tour. If the words "farm tour" sound more like a nightmare than a fun weekend activity to you, think again. On this unique tour of Saratoga's farms, you can bring friends, family or go solo as you drive yourself around to whichever of the seven participating farms you so please. It's fall and that means many yummy winter vegetables are starting to come into season, the pumpkins are ripe for the picking and the apples are at their prime. Guests will have the chance to sample local products, visit the farm animals and watch various demos. Farms featured include: Hanehan's Pumpkins, Schuyler Farms, Mill Creek Farm, General Bailey Homestead Farm, Joy of the Journey Farm, Lladybug Llamas and Willow Marsh Farm. Around Saratoga County - Saratoga, Ballston and Greenfield. Saturday, Oct. 8. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (885-8995 www.saratogafarms.com). FREE.
If you haven't celebrate Oktoberfest... now is the time
  • OctoBEERfest at the Mill. Head down to the Mill on Round Lake for their version of Oktoberfest - OctoBEERfest. How much explanation is needed for this one? Great beer, great company and live music - enough said. Celebrate fall with a cold on this Saturday. The Mill on Round Lake, 2121 Route 9, Round Lake. Saturday, Oct. 8. 2 to 8 p.m. (899-LAKE www.myfavoritetaverns.com). FREE admission.
Deal 'em in and test your poker face at a poker tournament
  • Texas Hold 'Em Tournament. Think you've got what it takes to be the best of the best in Texas Hold 'Em this weekend? Proceeds go to charity so there's no excuse not to head to the American Legion in Clifton Park on Saturday. Come early for dinner. All donations go to benefit Hannah's Hope Fund. American Legion, Crescent Road, Clifton Park. Saturday, Oct. 8. 4 p.m. start. (371-4463 www.hannahshopefund.org). $100 Suggested donation.
Catch a hockey game
  • Phantoms Season Opener: Phantoms vs. Connecticut. Believe it or not, it's that time of year again - hockey season. Support the Adirondack Phantoms as they kick off their 2011-2012 season Saturday night. Watch the boys take on Connecticut at the Glens Falls Civic Center and support the regional AHL team in its third ever season. Dress warm and don't forget the hot chocolate! Glens Falls Civic Center, Glens Falls. Saturday, Oct. 8. 7 to 9:30 p.m. (480-3356). $10 Kids tickets; $13.04, $16.25, $20.53, $22.67, $28.02. 

Head back in time at a nostalgic car show
  • 'The Way We Were' Car Show. Hosted once again by the B.Spa Business & Professional Association, 'The Way We Were' Car Show features hundreds of classic old-school cars with all proceeds benefiting Ballston Spa community events and project. If you've got an old beauty you want to enter, the first 400 entries receive event dash plaques and the first 200 will receive car show souvenirs. Trophies will be awarded to the top 5 cars in 13 divisions - some categories include: Mayor's choice, best engine, best paint job and oldest vehicle. Bring the family for a festive atmosphere in downtown Ballston Spa this Sunday. Wiswall Park, Front Street, Ballston Spa. Sunday, Oct. 9. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (885-2772). FREE to attend. $10 Registration day of show.
Say goodbye to Grant Cottage for the season
  • Family Fall Festival at Ulysses S. Grant Cottage. Usher out the season at Grant Cottage with a family-fun festival. There will be hands-on activities for both kids and adults and the chance to sample some cake on the porch. Admission is free with tours running at usual costs. Enjoy the foliage with some of the area's most breathtaking views for a Sunday full of wholesome fun. Ulysses S. Grant Cottage, Wilton. Sunday, Oct. 9. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (584-4353 www.grantcottage.org). FREE.


Downtown businesses "go pink" for breast cancer awareness

SARATOGA SPRINGS October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and businesses in and around Saratoga Springs are "going pink" to help build awareness and raise money for breast cancer research.

Look stylish and benefit the Susan G. Komen for the Cure at Brooklyn Attitude next week
Brooklyn Attitude salon on Ballston Avenue teamed up with Kasandra Isaacson from Coldwell Banker Prime Properties to host the first annual, “Passionately Pink Saratoga” fundraiser. 

Between 4 and 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 11, customers can come in to Brooklyn Attitude where for a $10 cash or check donation, they can get a pink hair extension. 

The pink hair piece shows your support for breast cancer awareness and the $10 donation goes toward reaching a $2,000 goal.

All money raised from the event will be donated to the Susan G. Komen Passionately Pink for the Cure, an organization that supports breast cancer research, education, screenings and treatment programs. 

For more information call 580-0016 or visit www.brooklynattitude.com

Buy bras to fight breast cancer at Clothes Line
This month at Clothes Line of Saratoga, ladies can buy bras for breast cancer awareness with the boutique’s third annual October bra sale.

Customers who purchase one bra receive 10 percent off, two bras get 20 percent and purchases of three or more are 30 percent off. 

A portion of proceeds will go to benefit the Saratoga Hospital Women’s Imaging Center to support breast cancer research, treatments and screenings. 

“It’s to support breast cancer awareness and also to help raise proceeds to go toward finding a cure,” said Evelyn McCarthy, a Clothes Line sales rep. 

Clothes Line is located at 486 Broadway. For more information call 306-5201.