Americus Garden Inn

504 Rees Park, Americus, Georgia 31709
Innkeeper(s): Mr. and Mrs. Kim and Susan Egelseer

Daytripping from Americus - A Tale of 3 SouthWest Georgia Vineyards - Chapter 2 23 Sep 2016, 4:04 pm

When we first came to Americus, in 2002, there was a beautiful golf course right here in Americus known as Wolf Creek.  During the economic downturn, the golf course closed.

In 2013, two brothers and a cousin decided to bring the land back to life, not as a golf course, but as a vineyard.  
It is a beautiful property with over 100 acres of lakes.

I really enjoyed seeing all the wildlife including dragonflies and fish.

I am so easily distracted - back to the muscadine grape vines.
They are planted on the old golf course fairways.

When I visited in August, the grapes were not quite ripe yet.
They have 9 different varieties of grapes planted.

The vines were overflowing with grapes.

They have raspberry vines, too.
Jerry English, one of the owners, was kind enough to show me around.  This is where the grapes turn into wine.  From what I've heard, these bottles are now full of this year's vintage.
We had the privilege to try some of their first attempts from last year's crop.  I can honestly say that it was DELICIOUS!
They have recently come up with their new logo and the Wolf Creek Plantation store will be opening in November 2016.   If you might enjoy some Southern muscadine wine, be sure to check it out. 

Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn blog.  Stay tuned for Chapter 3 of A Tale of 3 SouthWest Georgia Vineyards.

Daytripping from Americus - A Tale of 3 SouthWest Georgia Vineyards - Chapter 1 26 Aug 2016, 12:13 pm

Did you know that there are 3 vineyards within a reasonable drive from Americus, Georgia? 
We set out on several day trips to check them out, just for you.
The first one we visited was Still Pond Vineyard Winery and Distillery.
It was a beautiful drive through the country to reach Arlington, Georgia, about an hour or so from Americus.
We passed acres upon acres of farm fields.

Finally, we came upon the sign for Still Pond Vineyard, just 1.5 miles ahead.
The minute I stepped out of the car, this dragonfly landed at my feet.  I took that as a sign that this was going to be a really good day.
The entry way is charming and we were greeted by Charles Cowarth, the owner and winemaker (and distiller...) who gave us a tour of the facility.
This machine harvests the muscadine grapes.
 This is the machine that actually presses the grapes to extract the juice.
This is where the magic happens, turning the grape juice into delicious wine.
These tanks are enormous.
Besides making wine, Still Pond is also distilling alcohol.

The entire distilling process is really fascinating.
They are producing vodka, brandy and Moonshine at Still Pond.
Legal, moonshine, to be clear.
Here you can see the brandy is aging in barrels, not yet ready for consumption.
Now for the tasting room.  The first thing you notice is the number of awards that have been bestowed upon so many of their wines.
And, the most amazing part of this experience is, your first 7 wine samples are FREE!
You might try the blackberry bliss.
or the gold limited reserve
or the Farmhouse white
or AppleShine
or how about some mead?  I did not know that mead is wine made from honey.  Did you?
So, after all that tasting, we had a hard time deciding what to buy.
We decided to take a walk around the vineyard and check out the pond on the property.  Of course, I was totally distracted by the dragonflies.
A few of them posed for a photo.
It's amazing how many different species there are.
I discovered my new favorite dragonfly, the halloween pennant.
The pond was beautiful with Spanish moss covered trees nearby.
Truly a picture perfect day.
After learning about the muscadines and how they are harvested,
we took a closer look at how they are planted.
You can just imagine how much work it would be to harvest by hand.
They weren't ripe yet when we visited, but, they sure were pretty.

So, the next time you visit us in Americus, consider staying an extra day to visit our friends at Still Pond Vineyard and Winery.

Stay tuned for our next blog post on Vineyard Winery #2!

Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn Bed and Breakfast blog.  Check back soon for the next installment of Daytripping from Americus.

Gluten Free Fresh Fig Crumble Recipe 17 Jul 2016, 11:40 am

This is the first year that the birds and the beetles have decided to share the figs on our fig trees.  With an abundance of figs, I decided it was time to try a new recipe.  I found a recipe that was similar to a cobbler or a crisp and thought to myself, I can make this gluten free (so I can eat some).  Be forewarned, the recipe yielded a high ratio of crumble to fig, so, if you would like less crumble, adjust accordingly.  I started by harvesting some fresh figs, washed them and halved them.

I placed them in a single layer in a baking dish - about 16 figs fit perfectly as most were small.

I preheated the oven to 350 degrees as I assembled the crumble ingredients - butter, brown sugar, cocoa, coconut flour, almond flour, baking powder, salt and toasted pecans.

I allowed the butter to soften to room temperature and then added the dry ingredients to the butter.

It quickly combined into a dough.

I chopped the pecans

added them to the dough

and here is the finished crumble dough.

I placed some of the crumble on each fig half.

It took about 30 minutes for the figs to soften and start to release their juices, and for the crumble to turn a beautiful golden brown.

Kim and I both did a taste test - We both loved it!

So, the next time you have some figs that you want to play with, try this recipe.  It was delicious!  And, let me know how it turned out for you.

Gluten Free Fresh Fig Crumble

16 small figs, halved
4 Tablespoons butter, softened
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup almond flour
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup chopped toasted pecans
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place halved figs in a single layer in a shallow baking dish, cut side up.
  3. Combine the next 7 ingredients in a medium bowl, mixing until it holds together.
  4. Add the pecans and mix until it is evenly incorporated.
  5. Place a generous amount crumble on top of each fig, gently pressing onto each fig.
  6. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the figs begin to release their juice and the crumble is nicely browned.
  7. Enjoy!

Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn Bed & Breakfast.  We hope to host your visit to Americus in the near future.


Chilled Watermelon Soup for a Hot Summer Day 17 Jun 2016, 2:58 pm

It's that time of year when watermelons are ripe and the temperature outside is crazy hot.  What is more refreshing than chilled watermelon soup?  It's easy to make and a great way to use all that extra melon.  By the way, the watermelons this year have been phenomenal!

Here's the recipe:
Chilled Watermelon Soup (from Southern Living July 2003)
Yield:  3 - 4 cups soup

  • 4 cups seeded watermelon cubes
  • 1/3 cup apple juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon honey (optional)
  • 1/3 cup plain nonfat yogurt
Process first 5 ingredients and honey, if desired, in a blender or food processor until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides. Cover and chill 1 hour. Serve in individual bowls with a dollop of yogurt.

Stay cool and enjoy!  Hope to see you here at the Americus Garden Inn Bed & Breakfast soon.

An Easter Walk Through Oak Grove Cemetery 27 Mar 2016, 12:50 pm

I saw this gorgeous tree from the road and decided I had to stop and take a quick look.  It looked like a huge wisteria tree.
The scent of wisteria was so strong that it took my breath away.
As I strolled along, I noticed the blooming dogwood trees.
There was this one lone lily growing through the grass.
These white iris were covered with insects of some kind.
I'm not sure what these are, but, they were everywhere.
These were, too.
The yoshino cherries were in bloom.
And, there were still quite a few camellias.
This one had an insect visitor.
This camellia was full of ants.
These have been blooming for months and are just about done for the season.
This camellia was particularly beautiful.
Another blooming dogwood tree.
I love these little white flowers.
And, as I left, I had one more opportunity to enjoy the wisteria.

Thank you for joining me on my Easter Sunday walk.  Hope you'll come visit us and we can take a walk together, in person!
Happy Easter.

Gluten Free Low Carb Savory Almond Flour Muffins 19 Jan 2016, 4:25 pm

I had a special request for low carb muffins for a prediabetic guest who had been told by her doctor to avoid "bread", but, she didn't want to miss out on my baking.  Since we had one morning of her visit that there were no other guests, I decided to try a new recipe just for her (and her hubby).  My absolute favorite gluten free muffin with rice flour is a cheese muffin.  So, I decided to try a savory option with almond flour to keep the carbs to a minimum.

It is a very simple recipe that comes together quickly.  Just put all the ingredients together in one bowl, stir, scoop into a muffin tin and bake for 20 minutes.  The result is a muffin reminscent of a whole wheat muffin with only 3 grams of carbs per muffin!  The recipe makes 8 muffins.  Kim's suggestion to maximize enjoyment is to place the muffins back in the oven for a couple of minutes right before you eat them - the crust crisps up and makes them extra tasty.   If you look closely, you can see the bits of sun-dried tomato, oregano, basil and parsley.

So, give the recipe a try and let me know what you think.

Gluten Free Almond Flour Cheese Muffins
Yield: 8 muffins - 3 grams of carbs per muffin

1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon vinegar
1 cup almond flour
2  large eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup  heavy cream
1 Tablespoon olive oil
¼ cup of shredded Parmesan cheese
oregano, to taste
basil, to taste
cayenne pepper, to taste
parsley, to taste
sun-dried tomato, to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray 8 muffin cups with PAM.  (Fill remaining muffin cups 1/2 way with water to avoid hot spots.)
  2. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. Evenly divide batter into prepared muffin cups.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes.

Willet Way Wonderland 2015 or Christmas Lights of Americus 7 Dec 2015, 9:30 am

It's that time of year - time for the lights of Willet Way Wonderland to be ignited.  About a mile from our home, this winter wonderland is an annual tradition here in Americus.  Although Santa wasn't around in person when we drove through, his schedule was posted for those seeking a photo op with Santa.  Please click on the first photo and just enjoy the slide show.  No further comments from me are necessary.  Hope this brings a smile to your day.

Wishing all a safe and happy holiday season. 
Happy Chanukah and Merry Christmas.

Gluten Free Chocolate Coconut Muffins for one (or two) 21 Oct 2015, 6:06 am

Gluten Free Chocolate Coconut Muffins
I am always on the lookout for new recipes, especially those for people with special dietary needs.  On the King Arthur Flour website, I found a recipe for Chocolate Coconut Cake made with coconut flour that sounded promising.   In one of the reviews for the recipe, someone shared that the recipe made 10 muffins.  So, I decided to cut the recipe down to make just 2 muffins, one for me and one for Kim.  Here is the pictorial instructions to make 2 muffins, if you want to try it, too.  The only substitution I made to the original recipe was I used brown sugar in place of regular sugar.  These are not sweet and the cocoa coconut combination is really nice.  However, next time I make them, I'm going to add some chocolate chips.

Here are the ingredients you will need:  coconut flour, cocoa, baking powder, vanilla, sugar, 1 egg, butter, and salt.

Sift 4 teaspoons, or 1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of coconut flour

with 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder.  Set aside.

Place 4 teaspoons or 1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of cocoa

into a microwave-safe container with 1 Tablespoon of butter

Microwave for about 30 seconds, or until the butter is melted.  Stir.

Add 1/8 cup or 2 Tablespoons of sugar (I used brown sugar)

and 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla

along with one egg to the butter cocoa mixture.  Add a pinch of salt, if you like.

Whisk to combine.

Add the dry ingredients to the mixture

and whisk to combine.

Evenly scoop into 2 paper lined muffin cups - place water in empty cups to prevent hot spots.

Bake at 350 degrees

for about 20 minutes (check at 17 - 18 minutes)

Check with a toothpick for doneness - should come out clean.


Gluten Free Chocolate Coconut Cake (recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour)

  1.  Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 2 muffin cups with paper liners
  2.  Sift together the coconut flour and baking powder, mixing to combine; set aside.
  3.  In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter with the cocoa, stirring until well blended.
  4.  Whisk the sugar, salt, vanilla, and egg into the butter-cocoa mixture. Add the coconut flour and baking powder, whisking until smooth.
  5. Divide the batter into the muffin cups. Let it rest for 10 minutes.
  6. Bake the muffins until set, about 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. 
  7. Allow to cool and enjoy!

Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn blog.  Come back and see us again, soon.

Upcoming Sumter County Georgia Events 26 Aug 2015, 10:12 am


As the temperatures drop to a more comfortable level and the gnats disappear, it is time to enjoy a trip to Americus, Andersonville, and Plains.  There are a quite a few upcoming events that may inspire you to come visit us.

Former President Jimmy Carter has been all over the news due to his recent cancer diagnosis and treatment.  As you may or may not be aware, Mr. Carter has been, and plans to continue, teaching an adult Bible Lesson at his church on the Sunday mornings he is in town.  The service is open to the public and all are welcome to attend.   His schedule is posted on the Maranatha Baptist Church website.

In September:

Sunday, Sept 6 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday School at 10 am.

Sumter Players will be performing "The Andersonville Trial" Thursday, Sept. 10 through Sunday, Sept. 13 at the Rylander Theatre.  Tickets are $10 - $15. 

Sunday, Sept 13 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday School at 10 am.

‘The Ride Home’ which pays tribute to former U.S. POWs and the families of MIAs will be Sept. 16-20.  See the Americus Times Recorder for more information.

The Manhattan Dolls will be performing  music USO style from boogie-woogie to the blues
Friday, Sept. 18 at the Rylander Theatre.  Tickets are $14.  

The Funeral for the 13,000 will be held at Andersonville National Historic Site on Saturday, Sept. 19 at 1:00pm. 

Taste of Sumter will be held on Thursday, Sept 24 in our beautiful historic downtown.

Plains Peanut Festival, honoring Plains, Peanuts and a President will be Saturday, Sept 26 in downtown Plains.  Events include a parade, book signing, train ride and a street dance.  Visit the Plains Georgia website for more information.

Sunday, Sept 27 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday School at 10 am.

In October:

Andersonville Historic Fair will be Sat & Sun, Oct 3 - 4,in the Andersonville Civil War Village.

Sunday, Oct 4 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday School at 10 am.

Plains Chautauqua will be held Friday, Oct 9 through Sun, Oct 11.

The Broadway Boys, a group of 6 Broadway performers, will be performing the music of Broadway on Friday Oct 16, 2015 at the Rylander Theatre.  Tickets are $29.

Sunday, Oct 18 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday School at 10 am.

Sunday, Oct 25 Jimmy Carter is scheduled to teach Sunday School at 10 am.

Although some of these events are subject to change, maybe you should just come to Americus to enjoy some peace and quiet, along with some Southern hospitality.  We'd love to see you.

Gluten Free Oatmeal Banana Muffins (wheat free, flour free) Recipe 9 Jul 2015, 4:51 pm

Today, there are so many people on gluten free diets.  For those who can enjoy oats, here is a recipe that uses exclusively oats.  No wheat, corn, rice or other flour is used.  The recipe makes 8 muffins and can be doubled.  Here are the ingredients you'll need (the chocolate chips are optional).  I did not have "gluten free" oats, but, no one had Celiac disease when I experimented and regular oats were okay to use. 

You could simply put all the ingredients into the food processor and blend at one time.  But, I chose to use my immersion blender and the chopping attachment for this small batch recipe.  I measured the oats into the chopping cup.

Added the sugar.

Baking powder was next.

Baking soda.

Cinnamon was last.

All the dry ingredients are in the chopping container. 

I blended until it looked about right.

This looked perfect, to me.

Now for the wet ingredients.  I broke a banana into pieces into the immersion blender cup along with one egg.

Added Greek yogurt

and some vanilla extract.

Everything is ready to be blended.

Immersion blender was perfect for this task.

Looks perfectly blended.

The oven was preheated to 400 degrees.

Combine the dry ingredients with the wet.

Blend with the immersion blender.

Here is the volume of batter once everything is mixed together.

This recipe makes 8 muffins.  I've made it twice.  You can either use foil liners or you can spray the muffin tins with non-stick spray.  However, if you use the chocolate chips for garnish, as I did, if you do not use the foil liners, the chips sink into the batter.  They stayed on top using the liners.

1/4 cup of batter per muffin.

I carefully placed 6 chocolate chips on top of each muffin and filled the empty muffin cups 1/4 full of water.

The timer was set for 15 minutes.

After 15 minutes, they were not quite done.  I gave them another 3 minutes,

Looks like 8 beautiful muffins to me.

A closer look

I allowed them to cool for about 10 minutes before serving them.  Everyone liked them!

Gluten Free Oatmeal Banana Muffins (wheat free, flour free)

1 ¼ cups old fashioned oats (gluten free, if needed)
1/3 cup granulated sugar
¾ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 large egg
1 large ripe banana
½ cup plain Greek yogurt
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
48 chocolate chips (optional)

1.      Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2.      Line 8 muffin cups with foil liners or spray with non-stick cooking spray.
3.      Measure dry ingredients into food processor or chopping bowl of food processor.  Blend or chop until oats are finely ground.
4.      Blend egg, banana, Greek yogurt and vanilla extract together with immersion blender.
5.      Add dry ingredients to banana mixture and blend until smooth.  
6.      Divide batter into prepared muffin cups.  Garnish with chocolate chips, if using.
7.      Bake at 400°F for 15 - 20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

NOTE:  You can simply put all ingredients (not the chocolate chips) into a food processor to blend.  I was experimenting and wanted to how the ingredients looked at each step.

Thanks for visiting the Americus Garden Inn blog.  Let me know if you what you think of this recipe.  Hope you and your family enjoy it as much as we do.