On September 1, my latest book was released, number 18. It is
a deviation from most of my published work. It is in essence simply a detailed list of 100 of my favorite places on Route 66, and it was one of my most challenging projects to date. How can you distill something as amazing as a Route 66 adventure, an odyssey of more than 2,000 miles through the heartland of America on the most famous highway in the world into a simple list of just 100 museums, attractions, restaurants, and classic motels?
With that as an introduction, let’s discuss the places that made the list. We will start with the delightful Belmont Winery near Cuba, Missouri. In advance I should note that several places and events in Cuba, and in the surrounding area made the list. As you might have guessed, my dearest friend and I are quite enamored with this charming Ozark Mountain community, and the people that make it so special.
Belmont Winery, officially, is located in Leasburg, Missouri. Perched atop a wooded knoll there are delightful views of the valley below, and the rolling forested hills that march toward the western horizon, especially from the covered open air pavilion.
My introduction to this wonderful little gem was during Cuba Fest, a fun filled little festival that adds a certain Norman Rockwell feel to the community every October. The excellent food and tasty pink dogwood wine was enhanced greatly by the view, the music of Joe Loesch and the Road Crew, and the fact that the entire evening was being shared with our Route 66 family.
In the years that followed, my dearest friend and I returned several times, and found our infatuation with the charming place growing on every visit. On our recent Route 66 adventure we were privileged by an opportunity to enjoy a private dinner with Jeff and Trish Voss, the owners, and sample a few of the restaurants signature dishes prepared by Lee, their excellent chef. Every dish was a taste sensation and with every plate served, affirmation that this was a place worthy of THE LIST.
If your looking for the ultimate romantic weekend getaway, I have a suggestion. Make reservations at the historic Wagon Wheel Motel (ask Connie for room 22 with the Jacuzzi), and drive to Cuba on scenic Route 66. You can ensure a memorable weekend by planning your trip to coincide with an evening when the Belmont Winery is hosting a night of music in the pavilion (573-885-7156, firstname.lastname@example.org) .
One more Belmont Winery tip. This is an ideal place to host a group function or event. Imagine your car club cruising legendary Route 66 through the rolling Ozark Mountains, a superb dinner at the winery, a bit of wine sampling, and a superb bottle of wine, or two, shared with friends around the fire at the Wagon Wheel Motel where the neon glows bright.
Stay tuned. In forthcoming blog posts I will introduce you to other places that made the list. If you can’t wait, may I suggest that your order a copy of 100 Things To Do On Route 66 Before You Die , or contact me for a signed copy. Did I mention that Belmont Winery has signed copies on hand?
Last but least, I should note that this book deviates from previous work in another way as well. It isn’t meant as a guide book. In fact, it is meant to serve as a companion to travel books such as Travel Route 66. It is in’t in geographic order, but categories.