New England Day Trips: Essex/Ipswich, Ma


One Sunday in July, J & I took a day trip to Essex/Ipswich, Ma. It was a uniquely New England Day filled with activities, and was a great way to spend a day.

J.T. Farnums Seafood – We kicked the day off at this quintessential New England Seafood joint, and had an excellent meal. Nothing to complain about a great lobster roll and a great view.

Lobster Roll and Fried Scallop Plate at JT Farnham’s Seafood & Grill in Essex, Ma

Best and Juiciest Scallops I’ve ever had – Josh

Wolf Hollow – There’s a man-wolf and he lives in Ipswich, MA. His name is Zee and he is part of the family that is behind Wolf Hollow. Wolf Hollow is a family run non-profit operation that houses a pack of wolves on their grounds. They exist to educate the community on wolves and have existed since 1990. Wolves are extinct in New England and only exist in other parts of the country and Canada. That is just one of the facts that I learned when visiting Wolf Hollow for their one hour show.

Zee gives the one hour educational talk about wolves, their history, and the dynamics of the Wolf Pack. All the while he is in the pit with the wolves. At face value, this sounds like a great middle school field trip, and it would be. There will be a fair share of kids in the audience asking questions if you go. However, this guy is one with the wolves and it’s pretty electric for all ages. You are witnessing so much more than a 1 hour educational talk. He is hanging out with the wolves, he is feeding them out of his mouth. He even claims to have taken a nap with the wolves. Total trust with the pack. It’s man being at one with beasts, co-existing w/ predators and being friend, not prey. Nature at its finest. Totally worth an afternoon trip to check this out.

1634 Meadery – Mead has to be one of the most underrated alcoholic drinks out there. Its so far under most people’s radar, yet tastes of the heavens nectar. 1634 Meadery in Ipswich is a bright little light into the wide world  of mead. They have a small tasting room, where you can try some of their delightful meads for a cost. After the tasting, we got to see their whole operation in process. They do all of their brewing and bottling right on site. The owner was around so we got to talk to him too. They showed us their brewing equipment as well as how they cork and put a wax polish over their bottles. Josh started brewing his own mead as a hobby, so it was cool to get to talk to someone who had been at it for awhile. We walked away with a couple of bottles to take home as well. There is something about their packaging that looks very expensive, and would make a great gift.

Ipswich Brewery – Another stop on the tour, the brewery is pretty large and had a pretty good looking vegetarian friendly menu. We were too lazy at this point in the day to take the tour, and just stopped for a quick beer flight and to check the joint out. We wanted to get a growler of their delicious barley wine to go, but sadly they did not have it in stock.


Country Scapes Art Gallery- Popped in here randomly, saw it by driving by. We met Johanne who owns the place with her husband and chatted with her for awhile. She is an artist who has alot of folk art for sale at the store which was pretty cool. They also owned a B&B on site that seemed like a great deal. Got these QT cards that were prints of her work that I am really into.


Random Farm Stand:

Here we encountered a fast talking Greek Guy who talked us into buying a pie (I don’t even like pie) and 2 jars of gourmet pickles that were $10 each that I’m pretty sure are available at Whole Foods for less (aka not like they made them on site). We randomly stumbled upon this and though, “Oh cool a cute farm stand”. Then after having to go to the car to scrounge up the last few dollars of cash to cover our cash only bill, we walked away saying “What just happened?” The pie was pretty good though, as were the pickles.


What We Didn’t Get To: Crane’s Beach, Woodman’s in Essex, Privateer Rum, Clown Shoes Brewery

One response to “New England Day Trips: Essex/Ipswich, Ma”

  1. Tracy,
    These write ups about Ipswich were very interesting. For all the times I have been through Ipswich I never knew all this info. We sometimes cut through Ipswich to get to Hamilton for Finn/Conor’s games.
    Very well written.


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