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Fresh Harvest – Gourmet Olive Oils and Balsamic Vinegars

February 18th, 2013

If you love wine tasting or are die-hard foodies looking for something different, you’ll love Fresh Harvest.

This shop quietly opened up a few months ago here in Eureka Springs and has become a big hit with locals and tourists. Imagine a tasting room with about 50 small stainless steel containers filled with infused olive oils and balsamic vinegars. Next to each offering are small tasting cups as well as bread croutons for palate cleansing between tastings.  Maybe there’s no swishing but there is definitely some lip smacking going on.  They have also showcased some fantastic combinations of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Our favorite is Organic Persian Lime infused olive oil paired with a Blackberry-ginger Balsamic vinegar. We especially love it on our salads.

Richard has been using the Organic Herbes de Provence infused olive oil for his Broiled Parmesan tomatoes. He also drizzles some over pan-roasted chicken just before serving. The flavor just bursts in your mouth. He says that for the most intense taste use the infused olive oils as a finishing sauce as heat tends to moderate the flavors.

fresh-harvest

The store offers a variety of different olive oils from mild to robust, as well as 17 different oils infused with herbs and fruits. There is even a Chipotle infused oil for those who like a little heat.  There are 19 different flavored balsamic vinegars like Wild Blueberry, Cinnamon Pear, Honey Ginger, Vermont Maple, Blood Orange and for you spicy fans, a Jalapeno.

The folks at Fresh Harvest say, “Olives are fruits. We believe extra virgin olive oil is like fruit juice: highly perishable, healthier and more flavorful when consumed fresh and full of amazing nutrients. This is one of the reasons we post the Harvest Date on every Extra Virgin Olive Oil we offer. Fresh Harvest is committed to providing you with the healthiest, best products in the world at reasonable prices. Chase the Crush!”

So the next time you are in town stop by their store and tingle your taste buds. They are only about 5 minutes from our Eureka Springs bed and breakfast.  Bon Appetit!

A Favorite Ozarks Attraction: Quigley’s Castle in Eureka Springs

August 16th, 2012

Quigley’s Castle in Eureka Springs

Quigley’s Castle in Eureka Springs, AR

Called “The Ozarks’ Strangest Dwelling,” this National Register of Historic Places home is both unusual and beautiful. Over the years, it’s become a favorite stop for Eureka Springs visitors to explore. Quigley’s Castle is the dream home of Italian immigrant, Elise Quigley. She and her family began building the home themselves in 1943. Mrs. Quigley’s design features 28 huge windows and exterior walls textured with embedded crystals, fossils, stones and arrowheads. Outside, the impressive perennial garden has a lily pond, beautiful plantings and a bountiful variety of flowers. The sitting areas and eclectic garden art are handmade of glass and stone.

Inside and out, Mrs. Quigley’s unique house expresses the love she had for nature. One of the most spectacular aspects of Quigley’s Castle in the Ozarks are the indoor gardens. Four feet of earth are held between the edges of the main living space and the home’s walls. 65 years ago, the soil was planted with tropical plants which have since flourished and now grow up to the second story ceiling. From the outside, you can see these tropical giants framed by the home’s huge windows. Jan has often wondered, with about 4 feet of open space on the second floor all around the house, how did Mrs. Quigley keep her boys from playing Tarzan. Perhaps she couldn’t? I know our boys would have been swinging from the support beams whenever our backs were turned.

The interior is decorated with family antiques and Mrs. Quigley’s quirky and distinctive style. Especially impressive is the giant and eclectic mural called “The Butterfly Wall.” Embedded with stones and intricately decorated with butterflies and birds, you’ll have to see it believe it!

Almost all of our guests who visit come back saying, “Now that was interesting.”

Quigley’s Castle is at 274 Quigley Castle Road in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. They’re open 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., April 1-October 31. During March and November, the hours can vary. For more information, call (479) 253-8311 or visit QuigleysCastle.com. Admission is cash only: $7 for adults; children 14 and under accompanied by an adult can visit for free.

While your enjoying your stay at our Eureka Springs Bed and Breakfast, be sure to explore all the best attractions in Eureka Springs, including Quigley’s Castle.

5 Ojo Inn B&B Earns Certificate of Excellence

June 23rd, 2012

Thank you to all of our guests!! For the second year in a row 5 Ojo Inn Bed and Breakfast has received a TripAdvisor® Certificate of Excellence. The award honors top-rated accommodation businesses that maintain an average rating of four or higher out of a possible five, as reviewed by travelers on TripAdvisor.

Our goal has always been to provide travelers coming to Eureka Springs, Arkansas with great accommodations and outstanding breakfasts and receiving this award for the second year in a row is evidence that our commitment is translating into positive traveler reviews. When we started this business we struggled with coming up with a statement that conveyed what we thought was important to us. Here’s what we said at the time: “Our mission to our guests is to ensure visitors to our inn experience hospitality and accommodations that meet the highest standards expected by the discerning leisure and business traveler.  That this will encourage the novice Bed and Breakfast guests to repeat their choice as well as  ensuring each guest leaves feeling happy to have been here.”

These words are still posted on our wall in the office and we hope that we can continue to fulfill our promise to ourselves and our guests. Thank You! Thank You! Thank You to all our wonderful guests.

Spring Fragrances in the Ozarks

May 2nd, 2012

We just love springtime when the flowers bloom and permeate the air with a sweet, wonderful fragrance. We’ve been walking the dogs lately and probably causing a stir by sticking our heads into bushes and plants and inhaling deeply.  Even the dogs are shaking their heads. Everything is just so green and lush right now and Jan was just told today she has been awarded the Commercial Garden of the Month by the Eureka Springs Garden club. Here at the bed and breakfast we’re also one of the gardens to be included in the Garden Tour in May. Don’t you just love Spring growth??

Richard and Jan….5 Ojo Inn Bed and Breakfast

Eureka Springs Queen Kitty

February 16th, 2012

Miss Ojo - Eureka Springs Queen KittyDoes this look like a Black Panther to you? Perhaps not, but in her mind, she’s a stealth hunter. Just ask her. She’s Mojo (a.k.a. Miss Ojo), and she considers herself the protector of the inn and likes to keep this corner of Eureka Springs safe for guests.

Here’s one of Mojo’s adventures. Jan told a guest that Mojo was like a black panther, stalking things large and small. While relaxing on their deck, the guest saw Mojo stalk a deer. She’d crouch down, scoot forward silently and then turn into a wimpy ball of fur when the deer turned toward her. The guest wrote about this black panther hunt in their room guestbook. A few weeks later during breakfast Jan shouted into the kitchen that the black panther was at it again (that was Richard’s cue to go rescue something from Mojo). A guest, who had read those comments from the previous guest, punched her husband in the shoulder and said, “See, I told you they had black panthers here”. We all had a good laugh after we explained that the black panther was a 10 pound cat with fantasies of grandeur.

It’s good to know that 5 Ojo Inn Bed and Breakfast has a Queen Cat watching over our accommodations.

Cookie Testing Begins for the Eureka Springs Cookie Tour

September 14th, 2011

Our first experimental test for the Sweet Treats Cookie Tour began with Maida Heatter’s Chocolate-Nut Icebox Cookie. This is a easy recipe. The texture and the form of the cookie is very good, actually it’s excellent. As a matter of fact I feel that the texture improves the taste. My first batch of cookies did not produce a strong enough chocolate taste for me and I believe this is a result of the quality of cocoa used.

When I eat chocolate I want to taste the chocolate. I am going to try this cookie again, however I am now online figuring out how to place an order for Wilbur’s Cocoa. I have used their chocolate before and found that Wilbur’s produces a fantastic chocolate that delivers a chocolate taste like no other.

The next experimental test will be another one of Maida Heatter’s Chocolate recipes – stay tuned!

……..Jan (5 Ojo Inn Bed and Breakfast)

Richard’s response: I know that Jan said there wasn’t enough chocolate flavor for her, but I and two other tasters snarfed our way through a couple dozen of these cookies and found them delightful. Bring on some more Jan!!

Chocolate Cookie Fantasy Wish

September 4th, 2011

It’s time for us to start thinking about our ‘Bed and Breakfast Inns of Eureka Springs’ Association annual Christmas Sweet Treats tour. Jan is scouting out all our cook books for special cookie recipes. She is really focusing on Maida Heatter’s ‘Book of Great Chocolate Desserts’. Me being the chocoholic, I’m not disappointed in her choice. Could this be a Julie meets Julia moment? I am wondering what great cookie recipe she will find, because you know how I hate being the one who has to taste all those experimental workings (sly smile now showing). Can’t wait for the taste tests to begin.

For the fifth year now, on Saturday, December 10th, our association will be putting on this event. Here’s what it includes.

  • Nine unique bed and breakfasts included on the tour.
  • Yummy cookies & treats (2 per inn) with recipes to add to your collection.
  • Holiday decorating ideas from each of the beautifully decorated inns.
  • A chance to relax away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
  • Finish your shopping in Eureka Springs’ unique shops and art galleries.
  • Enter our giveaway contest for a chance to win one of three $100 gift certificates good at any of the Sweet Treats Cookie Tour participating inns.

Will post more on the cookie tastings as they happen. Jan promised me a new cookie recipe a week.

Keurig Coffee Makers & Room Makeover

August 20th, 2011

We now have Keurig Coffee makers in all of our rooms. No more messy grounds or filter packs. Pop in a K-Cup and brew a great cup of coffee. If the two of you have different tastes, that’s no problem as we have regular and decaf coffee, flavored coffee and teas. Since these are single cup servings, each of you can choose what you want.

Also, we are doing some work on the Carriage House room, tiling the jacuzzi area plus some other upgrades that should make this room even more inviting.

Jan & Richard

5 Ojo Inn Bed and Breakfast

Butterfly Lodging in Eureka Springs

July 28th, 2011

Butterfly Lodging in Eureka SpringsAll we can say is, “Wow”. This year the number of butterflies swooping through the garden is amazing. Even driving down Arkansas highways there were dozens and dozens that dodged the car as we drove along. From what we can determine most of the butterflies here in the Eureka Springs area are Spicebush Swallowtails.

We thought, hey, we could really make some money if we could charge caterpillars for the nights accommodation they spent on our plants. Not just overnight accommodations but with breakfast included, specifically, Richard’s parsley. Throughout the garden it was like watching a battlefield in action with Richard trying to pick the parsley faster than the caterpillars could eat it.

But in the end, it was beautiful. Large, black-spotted butterflies adorning our yard….natures canvas. In the mornings when it’s cooler, we take our 5 Ojo Inn Bed and Breakfast mugs and watch the butterflies rising with the sun.

Fleur Delicious – French Themed Weekend Food

July 11th, 2011

This weekend Eureka Springs celebrated Fleur Delicious, a French themed weekend with a street fair atmosphere where the city and it’s lodging, retail/gift shops, spas, restaurants, bars, galleries and entertainment venues participated.

Delicious crepesAt 5 Ojo Inn Bed and Breakfast we served Crepes with Chive Scrambled Eggs, Smoked Pepper Bacon and Cheese Sauce on one morning, and French Toast a’ la Orange with Sauteed Orange Rum Bananas the other. It was fun experimenting with different things.

It had been a while since I made fresh crepes but after a few practice ones, you can get into a real rhythm swirling the pan to spread the batter.

We’re already thinking about what to do next year.

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