Hobbit House dining experience at The Preserve Resort.

Your Deserve The Preserve (Part 2)

Published on March 27, 2024

Day two, Saturday, at the Preserve Sporting Club & Residences in Richmond, Rhode Island, lived up to its promise as the most amenity-rich resort oasis in the nation and - all pun intended - hit a bull's eye delivering experiences for me and Charles Joseph that put the S in both sporting and spa.

After strong coffee in our Hilltop suite, we were off to The Sporting Shoppe for a firearms safety class before trying our marksmanship on America's longest, fully automated underground public shooting range. Then after lunch at its Lilly Pod, we had reservations for our sauna and massage at OH! Spa. By the time we sat down to a four-course dinner in our Maker's Mark Hobbit House™, our goal was feeling relaxed and maybe celebrating hitting a few targets on the range. Mission accomplished.

Sporting Shoppe, Spotting Life

Open to the public daily, the Preserve's two-level, 15,000-square foot Sporting Shoppe is its own must-see experience.

Designed in the same grand tradition as historic expedition outfitters, the Shoppe carries bespoke Italian FAMARS, or Fabbrica Armi d'Abbiatico e Salvinelli shotguns and rifles, fine firearms and ammunition, plus equipment and supplies for every imaginable outdoor sporting and adventure activity (including for your dogs).

Among the finest of its fine firearms is an ornate (Alpine Ibex-engraved stock and receiver) and highly precise (Zeiss Diovari Scope) handcrafted Stögner-Engraved Underlever .270 Win. 25.5" Rifle, weighing just over nine pounds and valued at more than $250 million.

But first, let's talk safety because the Sporting Shoppe is also a classroom, where respect for, and safe handling of firearms comes first. Our praise is sky high for firearms safety instructor, Rick Walsh.

You better be good at what you do to look two strangers like us in the eye and, without missing a beat, promise, "All my students hit bull's eyes. First time shooting".

I replied with self-deprecating humor, "You haven't met me yet".

"No," Rick grinned. "Everybody hits at least one". Darned if he wasn't right.

Sixty minutes and two police service Glock 22's later, Rick determined Charles was left hand/right eye dominant. I was right eye/right hand dominant, and thus we entered, through soundproof double doors, the longest underground shooting range in North America, where we could safely and confidently apply what we had learned ("drop the ball in the basket") from our NRA certified Range Safety Officer. Rick, it turns out, is a retired 39-year Critical Care Nurse with NRA Instructor Certification in more disciplines than most FEI judges, including rifle, pistol, shotgun, home firearms, personal protection in the home, and range safety.

"I have shot guns before", says Charles, "but never with this much instruction. I had a better concept about how to hold a gun correctly. What left an indelible impression was his telling us how, 'A gun is always loaded.' Even when you think it's not."

True to his word, we each collected Gun Fun target sheets with multiple bull's eyes on them. Rick's sense of humor was as keen as his marksmanship, assuring us how his CCN training meant he could operate the spa's (post-hangover) IV drip should we find ourselves in need after the Hobbit House bourbon tasting still ahead...

OH! Indeed

Conveniently located back at the Hilltop suites, director Clinton Cox calls OH! Spa, "Where wellness begins. The OH! Spa caters to the sporting and luxury lifestyle, with treatments geared toward adventure seekers and nature lovers, including massages, facials, body scrubs, manicures, pedicures, and a legendary array of services".

Our Itinerary

Friday, Sept 22

Saturday, Sept 23

Sunday, Sept 24

Our Maker's Mark Hobbit House Menu
Each course was paired with bourbon and culminated in the Preserve Reserve.

First Course
Chefs Artisanal Cheese and Charcuterie Board
Maker's Mark® soft red winter wheat, for one-of-a-kind full-flavor.

Second Course

Roasted Pheasant with Braised Collard Greens, Mustard in Watermelon Burrata Salad of Baby Kale, Prosciutto, Asparagus, Heirloom Tomato

Maker's Mark® wood-stave-finishing starts with matured bourbon at cask strength; 10 seared virgin, French oak staves are inserted into the barrel then finished for nine weeks in a limestone cellar.

Main Course

Ginger Salmon, Maker's Mark® Braised Short Ribs with Glazed Carrots, Cumin, Blood Orange, Lardons and Pistachio Gremolata, Garlic Mash
Maker's Mark® Cask Strength bourbon in its purest form, barrel proof, non-chill filtered


Sfogliatella & Signature DB Cheesecake Pops

Maker's Mark® Private Selection: Preserve Reserve, whose secret lies not only in 10 custom wood finishing staves added to fully matured Maker's Mark® at cask strength before aging in a limestone cellar, but in its unique taste profile of vanilla and dried stone fruit notes, with hints of roasted coffee, caramel and honey.

A two-page article in Elite Equestrian with images showcasing The Preserve Resort & Spa's Hobbit House, gun range, and luxury spa, capturing the essence of Rhode Island's premier sporting retreat
The cover of Elite Equestrian showcases two polo players in the glowing light of sunset, embodying the vibrant equestrian lifestyle at The Preserve Resort & Spa, Rhode Island.