(Note: This post was moved from the Manhattan board because it's about the Stone Barns Blue Hill. -- The Chowhound Team)
I was thinking of going to Blue Hill - either the one or at Stone Barns. Although I'm probably leaning towards going to Stone Barns.
I just made a reservation in November. But is it preferable to wait for spring/summer to go? Would "better" harvest be in season in spring/summer compared to late fall? Also, if I go to Stone Barns in November, by the time we get up there, it's going to be dark and you can't really walk around to check out the farm.
Any thoughts? Thanks in advance.
I think Blue Hill at Stone Barns is a much better experience overall as they are lucky to have one of the best overall settings of any restaurant in the US. Personally, I would prefer going in the spring or summer; the grounds are beautiful and it is definitely worth walking around and exploring them before your meal. On a nice day, the light streaming into the dining room gives an impression of airiness that very few restaurants have.
More importantly, the food at Stone Barns is better than the Manhattan location. While both embrace the farm-to-table aesthetic earnestly and are capable of producing great meals, Stone Barns has the distinct advantage of having a wealth of fresh produce and livestock literally right outside their kitchen. It feels a bit like Chez Panisse with French Laundry-level ambitions, but replacing FL's small garden with a comparatively enormous top-notch farm.
I went to Stone Barns in January and April and had the Farmer's Feast both times. Both were fantastic, but I did enjoy the January menu better. If November comes and you do not like what is on the menu you can also cancel. I had late reservations both times (10pm) so it was too dark to explore. I have not been to the one in Manhattan but I can say Stone Barns is one of my top 3 restaurants.