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The Inns of Aurora opens demonstration kitchen & relaunches award-winning restaurant

The Inns of Aurora is delighted to announce the addition of two new culinary venues to their collection of experiences for visitors to the east side of Cayuga Lake: Aurora Cooks! demonstration kitchen and 1833 Kitchen & Bar. These additions support the region’s growing culinary reputation and increased desire for engaging experiences for travelers and local visitors.

The Aurora Cooks! demonstration kitchen allows individuals and groups to gather around a central kitchen island surrounded by original artwork, top-of-the-line kitchen equipment, and state of the art technology that captures every step throughout the culinary journey. Class offerings include signature demonstrations such as fresh pasta, braising, and poaching, skill-based classes in knife skills and fruit carvings, and tasting experiences including chocolate and butter. Guests will enjoy a glass of wine, a craft beer, or a hand-blended cup of tea and a variety of delicious nibbles as they learn techniques and watch ingredients transform at the hands of the class hosts. These intimate experiences are limited to 24 individuals per class, allowing for live question and answer and interaction.

Leading Aurora Cooks! is Chef Patrick Higgins. Higgins’ culinary talents have been showcased at the Inns of Aurora since 2008, where he has served as sous chef and Executive Chef; he also was invited to cook at the James Beard House in 2016. Chef Higgins is joined by Grace Mattingly, whose years of experience in culinary front of house operations make her a natural, and knowledgeable, hostess. Mattingly was born and raised in Aurora and returned to the region after living abroad in Ireland.

“The Aurora Cooks! space provides a platform for this incredibly talented team to connect with our guests in a way that simply is not possible in a traditional restaurant,” remarks Director of Food & Beverage Meryl Eriksen, “Patrick and Grace are so warm and fun that guests feel as if they’re relaxing in a kitchen with old friends during a fabulous dinner party.”

On March 13, the award-winning Aurora Inn Dining Room reopened as 1833 Kitchen & Bar, a nod to both the incredible history of Aurora and the evolution of the concept from traditional restaurant to vibrant gathering space. The Aurora Inn, one of the Inns of Aurora’s four (soon to be five) residential-style hotels, originally opened in 1833 as a stop on the Wells Fargo stagecoach express, and has served the needs of travelers ever since.

“We’ve offered over 180 years of hospitality to visitors, and the relaunch of our restaurant as 1833 Kitchen & Bar honors both our heritage and our future in the Finger Lakes” said Sue Edinger, Chief Operating Officer.

The new bar space is the perfect backdrop to the Inns of Aurora’s award-winning wine program—honored by the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence—featuring an extensive collection of both Finger Lakes and world wine. Wine is now housed in a custom suspension wire system to display the collection’s variety and depth. A new, larger bar allows for an expanded craft beer and cocktail program, including 1833’s Bompay IPA cocktail, made with Bombay Sapphire Gin, house-made beer syrup, grapefruit juice, passionfruit, and lemon. The horseshoe-style bar is built of cherry and was custom-made and milled by D.R. Cornue Woodworks in Cazenovia and Curtin & Hadzor Fine Home Builders of Syracuse. The bar is complemented by a new lounge area with fireplace and casual seating. 1833 Kitchen & Bar features a daily Happy Hour from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. with $2 off all drinks and a bar snack menu of light bites.

1833 Kitchen & Bar is under the culinary leadership of Auburn-native Eric Lamphere as Executive Chef. Prior to joining the team, Lamphere was Chef de Cuisine at the Fargo Bar & Grill, part of the Inns of Aurora. He returned from the Finger Lakes after living in Maryland, where he focused on both seafood preparation and cheese production. The 1833 Kitchen & Bar guest experience continues in the expert hands of Manager Erin McElhinney and Assistant Manager Ben Maywalt, also both Auburn natives.

1833 Kitchen & Bar is open year-round for breakfast, brunch, and dinner, and for lunch from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Dining reservations are appreciated, though not required, and can be made by calling 315.364.8888 or by booking on Open Table. Aurora Cooks! is open year-round with a full menu of high quality culinary programming. Advanced reservations are required, and private classes are available. High-quality photographs of these spaces and their menus are available for download by media on the Inns of Aurora’s press page.