Killington, VT restaurants
Hey fellow chowhounders! I'm going to killington in march for a week of skiing. I've been going there since i was very young, but havent been in like 3 years! I was just curious what restaurants are considered the best these days. I'm sure its different then the last time I was there! Any input you all have would be great! Thanks in advance!
Spent the long weekend of the 4th in the area and, after reading through all the posts after-the-fact, some feedback:
Blanche and Bill's (Rt 4, between 100 and 100A in Bridgewater Corners) has really good pancakes - thick, fluffy, with a bit of cornmeal, and not at all sweet.(though they dump a ton of blueberry preserves on them, if you ask for blueberry pancakes.) The servers are pleasant and attentive but the kitchen is really slow - this was at 10 a.m. on a Saturday with the tables about 3/4 full. Still, it's the kind of homey place we like, even though the locals-to-tourists ratio seemed pretty low.
Long Trail Brewing Co. (Route 4, closer to 100A) is by far the BEST deal in the area if you're not looking for fancy or late night. They serve food till 6:00 and noshing out on the back deck with a pitcher is, on a summer afternoon, simply bliss. The brewery is on a beautiful clear creek, and each day we were there, we saw little kids pitching stones while their parents sat on the deck. (The bar will also give you plastic cups if you want to imbibe down by the creek.) The food, for pub food, is perfect, and cheap too. The beer-batter haddock fry was solid on the outside and moist on the inside. The cheddar ale chowder tasted like someone actually wanted it to taste good. We saw some massive juicy burgers on other tables too. If just coming to drink, you can help yourself to free fresh popcorn too. And there's a door up the stairs from where you can check out the brewery workings, and read informative signs from the catwalk. The vibe is very laid-back but efficient, and I applaud the brew folks for their super-eco ethos.
A bit further off to the south in Chester, on Rt. 11, MacLaominn's Scottish Pub serves haggis with neeps and tatties! (WTH?) Neeps are mashed turnips, tatties are mashed potatoes, and haggis is a tasty mash of cracked grains and animal innards - think black pudding or some such - which, once upon a time, used to be cooked stuffed into a sheep's stomach. They have both Scottish brews and local stuff on tap. It's a small place with not many tables (they do have an outdoor deck too) and the waitresses were a bit distracted, but it's full of locals and while we sat at the bar, the owner was on his perch off to the side, nodding to all coming and going. And if you're going to present your national dish with super-fresh tasting neeps and tatties, hey, thumbs up from me.
Back Behind Saloon: We ended up here because Long Trail was already closed and we were too tired to go over to Rutland (and Woodstock and Queechee are the sort of tourist traps that give us the dry heaves). Back Behind is on the scenic intersection of Rt 4 and Rt 100 and there's a big outdoor seating area. Complaints: The RI chowder does have big fresh clams, but way too salty. The ribs and pulled pork might have been barely palatable if not drowned in ketchup goop. (Having had all sorts of amazing low-rent roadside BBQ all over the deep south, the dissatisfaction with Back Behind is not simply due to a preference for rub vs. sauce.) The kitchen and the service didn't seem to have their heart in it, though the place supposedly has been around for decades, which is too bad, but I guess the location keeps the customers coming in.
And finally, not a chow source but a real find for beer hounds, is Brewfest Beverage Co., 199 Main Street, Ludlow, just south of the 103/100 split. It carries an amazing assortment of obscure local brews, as well as brewing supplies and taps to refill the growler special of the day. Here's the website: http://www.brewfestbeverage.com/
A friend of mine who works on the mountain says Peppino's has the best italian and the Wobbly has the best steaks, but expensive.
I like Sushi Yoshi, mainly because the hibatchi table is fun. I haven't eaten there when I didn't sit either at the hibatchi tables or the sushi bar. The sushi tastes good to me, but I don't know sushi well enough to compare it to other places.
Had the worst Italian meal of my life at Peppino's. Veal "Marsala" made with maple syrup? Side of watery spaghetti with canned crushed tomatoes with no seasoning whatsoever. To top it off the drunk waitress spilled the sticky marsala sauce in my lap. It was THE BEST evah!!! ;-)
He may work on the mountain, but that doesn't mean he has any taste. Peppino's is run-of-the-mill at best. Wobbly is OK, but you are definitely paying a "resort premium".
The sushi at Sushi Yoshi is OK. It won't make you forget your favorite sushi place at home, but it's OK. The hibachi tables are pretty much as good as you would find anywhere for that type of ersatz Japanese food.
I haven't eaten at either Peppino's or Wobbly so I figured that someone who is up there currently might know.
I have eaten at Sushi Yoshi, and think the food is good and the tables are fun. Do you mean inauthentic by the hibatchi table? I am not wll travelled, so I thought that the hibatchi type tables were not unusual in Japanese food. I generally think of ersatz foods as things like chicory coffee, oleo, etc. that are substitues for real foods, often developed during wartime to substitute for a scarce resourc.
Haha, yes I suppose oleo is an ersatz food!
I don't know how much a hibachi cooking surface like that is used in Japan, but that whole "experience" with the people cutting in front of you like that and setting things on fire etc is actually an American invention. I still enjoy it sometimes. I was using "ersatz" in a perhaps slightly less literal way.
You mean the spinning the egg with the spatula and flipping it into the hat isn't strictly authentic!?! I have seen a tv show where they were in Japan and I think (but don't hold me to it) that they were eating Kobe beef that they cooked themselves on a hot stone at the table, but definately no "show" like you see here.
My friend always says that he doesn't like the hibatchi table there because all of the food always tastes the same no matter what you order. He may be right, but I only go there 1-2 times a year. His daughter makes him go there all the time. I might add or limit to my recommendation on Sushi Yoshi that its a great place to bring kids because the show keeps them from fussing. You do have to make reservations for the tables, though.
Where on the Mountain do you like? I like Countryman's Pleasure which is a few miles down Route 4. Since I live around here, I never bother going up on the mountain for dinner.
hahhaaha, yes it does taste the same now that you mention it! Steak, chicken, scallops--all the same! I usually eat at the hibachi tables only after a few goombays, so I always just figured my taste buds were shot.
I like Choices, and On the Rocs. Countryman's Pleasure for good German. I used to like Corners Inn in Bridgewater, but have not been back since the change in chefs, so can't vouch for it anymore. The Garlic has ranged from so-so to really great for me. When someone who gives a crap is by the oven, I think the pizza at the Outback can be great, or else it can be just OK. For basic pub food, the Lookout is good.
I've heard of a few good places in Rutland, but once you're on the mountain it is so hard to leave, so never make it down there. I drive home by way of Woodstock, so I'm more likely to eat in that direction if I have the time, like ecwash does.
I have been skiing up at Killington since my college days and I have been to most of the restaurants up and down the access road...some of them still there after all these years.
Earlier in 2009, my wife and I had a pretty good breakfast at Sugar & Spice on the way out of town toward Rutland, VT. We spent 4 days skiing up at Killington and tried many of the restaurants on the access road...most of them still pricey and mediocre.
I like Johnny's for breakfast too. It's right near the Comfort Inn. The food on the access road for the most part sucks. Wobbly has made progress, but it's still a zoo. If I'm looking for a good meal, I generally look to get it as I'm heading home in Woodstock or Quechee (Simon Pearce).
I go up every weekend. My picks are mostly the same as everyone else's:
Choices & The Birches: best dinner
Wobbly Barn: best salad bar
The Garlic & Santa Fe: best wine pour
The last few years, Santa Fe has offered a goat cheese and roasted red pepper stuffed salmon that is delightful. I love the tapas at The Garlic when I don't want a big meal. The Lookout has good pub food. The Outback offers a Vermonter BLT pizza--bacon, artichoke hearts and tomatoes--that I cannot get enough of.
At all costs, I avoid eating at Charity's. Their creative seafood dishes for $29 simply turn me off.
Not much good food on the Mountain -
If you are in for a drive here are the best in the area -
Pane Salute - Woodstock - Authentic Italian Enoteca (need reservations)
Prince & Pauper - Woodstock - Good food, great small bar area
Simon Pearce - Quechee good american updated cuisine and glass shop/factory
Barnard Inn - Barnard VT pretty good food nice atmosphere
Brandon - Cafe Provence good bistro
11 Center St, Brandon, VT 05733
Barnard Inn Restaurant
, Barnard, VT 05031
Simon Pearce Restaurant
1760 Quechee Main St., Quechee, VT 05059
To offer something positive in this thread I think Johnny B's is best nearby for breakfast - been quite a few times and its always solid.
Long Trail Pub and Brewery has great burgers, sandwiches and Yaki Wings!!!
Other than that, I avoid the access road restaurants and head to Rutland to the Three Tomatoes? - serviceable italian or the 99 - at least you know what you're going to get - and get what you pay for, and the service will be better for the most part.
We drove by the Corners Inn last week and we saw a "fot sale" sign on the place.
Is the place open?
We know Cef Brad sold out a few years ago but we have no other information.
Anyone eaten there under the new owner?
How was the food?
Rd Rt 4 Uppr Uppr, Bridgewater, VT 05034
I have to say that the Back Behind Restaurant should be avoided at all costs. Was dining with a friend at the bar and he proclaimed his burger was off - as in rancid and inedible - management would only replace the burger - with another. I just wrote it off as an isolated bad incident. But when I complained on another attempt to eat there about my ribs tasting like lighter fluid, the manager working there would not replace them or offer a refund, because I ate one (of the six or seven large beef ribs) of the ribs. It was obvious the ribs had been boiled before putting on the grill as they were indeed falling of the bone since some of the bones were unnattached to the meat on the plate and did not have any tell tale signs of smoke being applied in a low and slow manner to get them to reach that state. That's just bad bbq to anyone that knows good bbq from bad.
Bad food is reason enough to be cautious, but bad management that refuses to rectify a bad meal is just plain unacceptable and derserves a write up like this.
Back Behind Saloon Restaurant
Jct Rts 4 100, Killington, VT 05751
The BACK BEHIND has world class baby back ribs and pulled pork. Meat literally falls off the bone. Ain't gonna find better baby backs this side of the Mason-Dixon line,.
Casey's Caboose is one the friendliest sh**hole bars I've ever the pleasure of knockin' back a few in. Leave your 12-steppin' pals behind and saddle up.
Blanche and Bill's Pancake House for breakfast is homey as they come. Grandma brings you your eggs, blueberry pancakes and waffles. And, like everywhere else in Vt., that's real maple syrup, not Sears maple syrup, Sparky! No omelets, but terrific pancakes, eggs and waffles. Caveat emptor: DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT deign to wear any clothing items emblazoned with a NY Yankees trademark logo to Blanche and Bill's, unless being chased down the slopes by dozens of torch-wielding local gentry Sox fanatics is your idea of fun. You've been warned.
Im not fan of the Back Behind too..heard some bad reviews bout that restaurant..
Blanche and Bill's Pancake House is open and has been open from what I know. Blanche sold the place, but it is still serving the best pancakes and waffles from Blanche recipe. She sold the business last year i think August 2009. I must say the food is much better than before. We been there several times and the food is always great. I love the waffles and they serve the real maple syrup. The restaurant is always packed especially if you come on weekends, be prepare to wait, but its worth it! you couldn't tell that Blanche no longer own it because nothing had change, all the Red Sox stuff still on display, and all the hand written signs all over the walls including a menus of food combinations. My favorite saying is " IGNORE ALL SIGNS!!!"
The Red Clover Inn on Woodward Road west of the access road going toward Rutland has wonderful food, less expensive than Hemingway's but special nonetheless. Heli's, just before Woodward road in the same direction, has more casual Czech-based food, and is also fun for a change. If you find yourself in downtown Rutland at lunchtime during the week for any reason, the Back Home Again cafe has great fish sandwiches, soups, and iced tea.
This list pretty much captures the options. Killington is not exactly a Chowhound destination resort.
Choices has the best food on the access road. I pretty much always eat at the bar. I've been eating there since the late 1980's and have owned a condo in that complex for 15 years. I do wish Claude, the chef/owner, would vary his menu. 2/3 of the menu was the same 18 years ago. Food prices are quite reasonable but their alcohol prices are fairly high. They have a great Sunday brunch if the skiing is iffy. They make a great corned beef hash. We'll often sneak in at 2:00.
Hemingway's has very small portions for a ski resort restaurant. Food quality, presentation, and service are excellent. Starters run $15+. Entrees run $35+. The wine list has a fairly stiff markup. You really can't escape a dinner for two for less than $200. At their price point in Vermont, I expect food art and it's not at that level so I rarely get there more than once every couple of years.
Outback does have the best pizza if you're into wood-fired pizza. The advice to avoid it on a Saturday is dead-on but everything at Killington should be avoided on a Saturday unless you get there as the doors open.
I actually like the Tapas menu at The Garlic but that's probably the 3 or 4 martinis speaking.
Down the hill towards Rutland in Mendon, we enjoy the German food at Countryman's Pleasure. I've been there many times and always get the Sauerbraten, spaetzle, and red cabbage.
I'm told the Jackson House in Woodstock has changed ownership and chef. That used to be the best food within 30 minutes of Killington. I can't vouch for it this year.
I don't frequent the Lookout even though I can hit it with a rock from my back deck. The place is insanely crowded and noisy on weekends. Midweek, it's fine for a drink and a bite to eat.
There are a few other places that have adequate food. The Birch Ridge Inn puts out a decent meal. If I absolutely have to eat a slab of red meat, the Santa Fe Steakhouse is better than the Wobbly Barn.
We ate at Hemingway's just outside of Killington last year.
The food was outstanding as was the sevice---and the price!
Heminway's is usually listed as a 4-star by Mobil Guide(I haven't seen the Guide lately) so others here may be able to give you a better update than my 1 yr. old opinion.
I agree 100% with NikoLe1625 that the area could stand some better restaurants!
Not much has changed in 3 years. Just some random thoughts, as I am there all the time:
The Garlic: fairly mediocre tapas, however they have a happy hour special which makes it reasonable. Based on the tapas, and a pasta dish I had last year, I generally don't hold my expectations too high here. But a few weeks ago I had a spinach stuff steak which blew me away. I kept saying "are we really at the Garlic? This is WAY too good."
Corners Inn: consistently good continental food. Off the access road, about 10 minutes east of the gondola.
Choices: pretty much the best place on the actual mountain. Therefore can get very crowded on Saturdays. Keep in mind "best place on the mountain" is not saying much.
Outback: great pizza, but since you're there for a week, don't go on Saturday, unless you want to also go into the cheezy "club", Tabu.
Lookout: best "inexpensive" bar-type food on the mountain.
Wobbly Barn: same as always! I'm sure you've been!