Iconic Hudson restaurant and hotel Willow Inn has reopened, serving British pub fare in its historic lakeside building.
Almost exactly a year ago the Inn’s future looked precarious — the previous owner of 40 years retired and put the establishment on the market, but with no buyers at the time, it closed its doors. Then in January, husband-wife duo David Ades and Patricia Wenzel stepped in to purchase it. Ades and Wenzel spent some months renovating it, and back in August, ghost hunters even stopped by to assess whether the old building had a paranormal presence.
Prior to the purchase, Wenzel and Ades weren’t restaurateurs (Ades does appear to have substantial business experience), but they’ve brought in a solid team — longtime Willow Inn manager Christine Booth is back, and Shaun Hughes (formerly of Joe Beef and Toronto’s Black Hoof) is serving as executive chef, putting that Black Hoof experience to good use: sausages and charcuterie meats will all be produced on-site (ditto for bread and pastries). He’s joined by Elias Deligianis (formerly of Old Montreal’s L’Orignal) as chef de cuisine.
The menu is geared towards local and seasonal produce, and that should become even more of a commitment in future, as an on-site garden and greenhouse to supply the restaurant are planned for next summer. It feels British, yet not old-fashioned or stodgy, with dishes like a roasted lamb leg and mackerel pâté that walk the line between homey and soigné. It’s rounded out with a creative (and again, British) cocktail list.
That approach is also evident in the tidy yet classic re-done 120-seat dining room — take a look below. A terrasse with lake views, will add a whopping 200 more seats, in addition to a private reception space which can be rented. The hotel arm of the Inn is still under renovation for the coming months.
STATUS — Willow Inn is open at 208 Main in Hudson. Lunch hours are Thursday and Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 3 p.m. It’s open for dinner Wednesday to Sunday, 5:30 to 10 p.m.
- Willow Inn [Official]
- Ghost Hunters Investigated Iconic Hudson Restaurant for Paranormal Activity [EMTL]
- Fall 2016 Closures [EMTL]