Please note: The Triphammer Grill is no longer open, but a new Caribbean restaurant has opened next to the Pont de Rennes Bridge that I have not yet had a chance to try.

Many people don’t realize that Rochester’s spectacular High Falls is located downtown in the Brown’s Race Historic District, near Frontier Field and the Kodak building.

Rochester's Scenic High Falls

Rochester's Scenic High Falls

The district was founded when Matthew and Francis Brown purchased a 200-acre plot of land in 1810.  They used the canals or “raceways,” which still run beneath the streets in the district, to power their flour mills.  Today, a refurbished 25′, 12 ton waterwheel can be seen in its original casement at its original site.

If you walk to the center of the Pont de Rennes Bridge you’ll get a better view of the Falls and you may even catch a view of Egrets wading in the shoals or Falcons diving to catch their lunch.  These Falcons nest on top of the Kodak building and if you want a “bird’s eye view” of them, during hatching season you can view their nest, thanks to the Rochester Falconcam.

You’ll also want to stop by the Center at High Falls New York State Heritage Area and Gift Center.  Curator Sally Wood Wilson is one of the most knowledgeable guides to Rochester you’ll find and she’ll welcome you to visit the museum downstairs as well as the fine arts exhibit upstairs, showcasing works of some of Rochester’s most talented artists.  Incidentally, on the Center at High Falls’ website, you can find a terrific walking tour of the area!

View of the Triphammer Grill and the Kodak Building from across the bridge

View of the Triphammer Grill and the Kodak Building from the esplanade across the bridge

Across the street, on the corner of Brown’s Race and Morrie Silver Way is The Creator’s Hands, owned by Carleen Wilenius.  Carleen started her first shop in another area of the city with the works of 25 local artists.  Today, you can find beautiful one-of-a-kind pieces by more than 250 artisans, including spiritual gifts, handcrafted jewelry, pottery & wood, calligraphy, books and regional music CDs as well as gifts representing Rochester.

Finally, top the day off with a fine dining experience at the Triphammer Grill.  Owner Jennifer Power serves lunch Monday through Friday and dinner Tuesday through Saturday.  Her Chef uses the freshest and most choice products in the preparation of their delicious meals.  The restaurant also offers a full bar and a good selection of fine Finger Lakes wines.

CLICK HERE for a map to get to the High Falls area.

P.S. And in your travels, if you hear the name “Sam Patch,” ole Sam was a daredevil and Falls jumper who had thrilled audiences by jumping over Niagara Falls.  On Friday, November 13th, 1829, he plummeted to his doom over the 96′ High Falls and into the icy Genesee River.  As the story goes, he was out pre-celebrating his success in local taverns before the jump, so no one is quite sure whether he jumped or fell.