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The Best of the Berkshires: You chose the winnersBy Kate Abbott, Berkshire Eagle StaffUpdated: 06/24/2010 04:05:42 PM EDT
Thursday June 24, 2010 Twelve thousand people wrote in this year to tell us their favorite places.

Every year at the beginning of summer, The Eagle runs a readers' poll. We print ballots in the paper, and people cut them out and write in their preferences. We collect answers by the boxful and count them on our living room floors.

Eagle advertising representative Nicole Haas and her children put in the effort to find the winners this year.

And we have more winners than we've ever had before.

We have added about 50 new categories. In the process, we have broadened old categories and added fresh ones. It turns out that people shop for their crocs, their blazers and their prom dresses at different places, or their A sell out crowd gathered on the lawn at Tanglewood to hear James Taylor perform. Aug. 21 2006 Darren Vanden Berge (Darren Vanden Berge)broccoli, their beef and their beer.

This year's voters have honored many places we have not seen before and some we know well.

If you are on this list, more people chose you than any other rival. People took the time to tell us they liked you.


And thank you to every voter who took that time to share some experience with us.

We ask these questions every year, because every year, people have new answers.

Places change.

Some changes come in cycles. An old stand-by closes and a new one appears -- a technology shifts and a library gives away its story tapes or a film studio pioneers new special effects -- and every change brings new possibilities.

And some changes come by nature. AdvertisementCreative entrepreneurs, exercising their ingenuity, revise their businesses the way a writer revises a novel -- sometimes for a new effect, and sometime for the pure pleasure of it.

A coffee shop picks a different way to roast its beans. A restaurant perfects its pasta Bolognese. A plant nursery harbors Johnny jump-ups or wild ginseng.

Thank you to every entrepreneur in the county who brings people back, over and again, because you do what you do well, with imagination and humor.

Without further ado, here are the winners:

Best Asian: Flavours of Malaysia, 75 North St., Pittsfield (413) 443-3188


Flavours has captured the title of Best Asian food. Flavours specializes in Malay, Indian, Eurasian, Chinese and Nyonya food and previously has been rated the No. 1 restaurant by Trip Advisor. All entrees can be cooked gluten free and several vegetarian dishes are available as well.