Aston Magna
Special Events

There is a number of events which occur each year on a regular basis and certain events which occue on an ad hoc basis. These events have been divided beetween annual events which occur every year and the special events which occur intermitently.

 

1. Annual events:

a. Robert Burns Party

On January 25 of every year or a on a Saturday closest to that date, there is a celebration of Robert Burns Birthday. A traditional Scottish dinner is served including Hebrides soul and Haggis is cooked and accompanied by many fifths of single malt scotch. Bagpipers pipe in the Haggis and play various songs while Robert Burns’s poems are recited by guests as well as special poems prose composed for the occasion.

 

b. Tennis Tournament Lunch

 

Each year in August there is a cookout with fresh sweet corn, which is held on the south terrace of Aston Magna at the conclusion of the major tennis tournament held at a nearby club called Wyantenuck Country Club.

 

c. Game Dinners

 

There are several game dinners held annually at Aston Magna to celebrate the taking of game on the property.

 

(i)  Pheasant

 

A pheasant shoot generally occurs in late October or early November when pheasants are put out several days before the shoot, bird dogs are brought in, and the shooters bag six to twelve pheasants depending upon the number of guns. After plucking the Pheasants are prepared in various ways in a kind of “Pheasant cook-off".

 

(ii)    Venison

 

Venison is the preferred game at Aston Magna and there are three seasons allowed in the Berkshires the first is bow and arrow during November; the second is shotgun during which time most of the dear are taken; the third is during mid December and is called black powder or musket season. (Rifles are not allowed in Berkshire County). After a week of hanging and aging, the dear are cut up in to portions for cooking. At least two and often three venison dinners occur at Aston Magna after appropriate marinating and served with great hearty wines.

 

(iii)   Other

 

In mid winter several rodents and upland game birds on the premises are shot, marinated and prepared as delicacies. These include hare, squirrel, blackbirds, partridges and wild turkey.

 

d. Chou route Garni

 

In mid November a traditional Chou route Garni is prepared including six different kinds of sausages, pork and sauerkraut cooked for approximately eight hours. This dish is served with a cold Riesling.

 

 

e. Easter barbecue (Asado)

 

On every Easter Sunday a whole lamb is slaughtered and slowly cooked on the outside barbecue pit. This is traditionally served with Ratatouille outside on the South terrace.

 

 

f. Trout Festival

 

In early may trout is fished from the nearby the green river at the bottom of the Aston Magna hill and served in various ways, including fried, grilled, and boiled (au bleu). The trout is accompanied by sautéed fiddlehead ferns; morel mushrooms, and ramps, all harvested on the premises. A chilled Sancerre wine is generally served with this dish.

 

 

g. Thanksgiving

 

Thanksgiving weekend generally is composed of three weekends. The first is a traditional American Thanksgiving during which both domestic and wild turkey (shot on the grounds) are served. The second, on Friday night, is a fowl combination consisting of duck, goose and turkey. The third (on SATURDAY NINGHT) IS GENERALLY ON EO THE VENISON DINNERS REFERRED TO ABOVE.

 

Special Events- intermittent and ad hoc

 

a. Weddings and confirmations

b. Book signings

c. Fund raisers – wine society, Kellerman Foundation, Close Encounters with Music, etc.

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