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Jan 6, 2008 05:51 AM

Rte 100 Eats - Southern VT

Having lived in and driven all around VT the last 3 years, I realized that we've never spent any time discovering the center of VT, right up Rte 100. So yesterday we started out in Wilmington and drove North up to just past Echo Lake (Ludlow area).

There were 2 places that I specifically wanted to try, Grandma Miller's in S. Londonderry and Dos Gringos in W. Dover. Grandma Miller's had been recommended here on Chowhound and Dos Gringos had been voted the best Mexican food in a reader's poll of the Brattleboro Reformer, so I had high hopes for both.

Grandma Miller's was fantastic! Perfectly sublime peanut butter bar w/chocolate, yummy eclairs (custard filling), divine almond horns. They also have breads, donuts, muffins and tons of take-and-bake pies, quiches, and pot pies. We opted for a take-and-bake cherry crumb pie and baked it late last night. It was delicious hot and even better for breakfast this morning. The crust is flaky and wonderful.

Dos Gringos, on the other hand, was so incredibly awful. I am completely baffled at how this restaurant was rated #1. I didn't realize how close it was to all the touristy Mt. Snow goings on (I'm not a skier), so I can see how they stay in business. Lots of tourist business and most people in New England don't really know good Mexican food. But this was truly awful AND its not Mexican but more Tex-Mex (fajitas, nachos, quesadillas).

The guacamole was so thick and devoid of any avocado chunks that we guessed, based on texture and taste, that they mix it with cream cheese. Weird.

The beef fajitas were served on a cast iron skillet but came to the table with nary a sizzle happening. I've never been served fajitas that were completely silent. The beef tasted like it had no seasoning whatsoever, not even salt and pepper and I could swear it had been steamed or was sitting in a steamer. No flavor.

I ordered the chicken burrito and cheese enchilada combo and it was dismal as well. The chicken burrito had beans in it and beans on the plate, so too much filler for me. I also don't recall the menu describing beans inside the burrito, but I could have missed it. The chicken itself was overcooked and unseasoned white meat, very dry. The cheese enchilada was good, actually; unconventional but good. It was a mixture of Ricotta and cheddar with a smoky chipotle sauce. That was the highlight of the entire table full of food.

The beans (watery) and rice were both bland and seemed not to be seasoned. The salsa does not come automatically, it must be ordered and the salsa was the cooked tomato/jarred kind, not fresh made. The chips were stale, some of them.

The only highlight of the entire dinner was my margarita. The margarita, beer and the cheese enchilada were all good; decor was funky and cute and service was great, but everything else food-wise was bloody awful.

Please feel free to add recs/reviews for more Rte 100 eats. We will be continuing our drive next weekend probably.

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  1. Bri,
    We happen to live in West Dover and you must try Dos Gringos again inbetween tourist seasons.
    We've had many a good meal there (especially on Wednesday nights when the appetizers are half price and margaritas are $3.00).
    So come back again during a not so busy time and give it another try.

    1 Reply
    1. re: RichK

      We never did make it back to Dos Gringos to try the food during the week. Maybe we will, now that La Carreta in Keene is closed.

    2. Yes, Grandma Miller's...I live less than 1/2 a mile up the road! They also have excellent frozen take-home dinner things. In this terribly busy season for me and my husband, we've relied on a lot of prepared foods: Grandma Miller's Chicken Pot Pies and Lasagna are peerlessly fine.

      2 Replies
      1. re: GG Mora

        And it seemed like their prices were so reasonable also. We purchased:

        2 coffees
        2 almond horns
        1 peanut butter bar
        1 eclair
        1 whole cherry crumb pie (take & bake)

        and the total was less than $20. I just can't say enough how great that pie was!

        1. re: Bri

          I go to Ludlow(off season- me on skis is bad news) I will have to search out Grandma Miller's! We always need treats when we go fishing...The only other bakery that I know of in the Ludlow area doesn't always meet my needs!

      2. Grandma Miller's sticky buns are wonderful, especially early in the day when they are hot out of the oven. I'm also a huge fan of the morning glory muffins and the sour cream coffee cake. We are building a house in the area and I can't wait to have year-round access to all of the wonderful baked goods. Also of note are the croissants at the Village Pantry du Logis in South Londonderry.

        1 Reply
        1. re: nancyl126

          The croissants at Village Pantry are purchased frozen and re-baked on site. And the cookies come from dough-in-a-tub. Just thought you should know.

        2. Dot's in Wilmington, just off of Rt. 100 on Rt. 9, never disappoints. It's open for three meals a day, seven days a week.

          1. I know this is an older thread but I had to add.
            All in Wilmington:
            Smoking J's bbq. i forgot the owner's name but he's very nice and actually from TN! yummy yummy yummy! There were 4 of us, we ordered almost everything off the menu minus dessert.
            Sadly, Poncho's Wreck closed. They had some good seafood and other.
            The Maple Brewery was good last time I was up there. The beer I had was local and delicious, the name escapes me, I think it was something Tiger (?).
            I also Second DOTS! especially in the off tourist season.

            My boyfriend and I are always looking for more places to eat when up in the Wilmington area.

            1 Reply
            1. re: dcote

              The White House looks like an imposing, grand inn (which it is!!) but the cozy restaurant and bar welcome jeans and parka-wearing slobs like us. It serves a knock-out lobster, macaroni and cheese combo. If you're reading this around Christmastime, you must go in for a drink, at least, to admire the incredible holiday decorations. It's really special. Oh, and pet the two cute dogs.