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Vermont's North East kingdom

ctbrit Aug 23, 2008 01:34 PM

Spending Labor day weekend in the North East Kingdom mountain biking. Any suggestions of good places to eat - breakfast/lunch/dinner all needed. We're staying in St Johnsbury I think & riding on the trails near East Burke. Driving up from Cromwell CT
Thanks in advance

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  1. DonShirer RE: ctbrit Aug 23, 2008 04:10 PM

    While they are not too close to St. Johnsbury, the East Side Restaurant and Pub in Newport, a few miles north has fairly good food and an unbeatable lake view. The Winding Brook Bistro, in Johnson, VT. on Rt. 100C , to the west of St. J., is a small restaurant with a surprisingly varied menu.

    8 Replies
    1. re: DonShirer
      River19 RE: DonShirer Aug 24, 2008 06:45 AM

      Ah yes, Kingdom Trails, we're also heading up there for Labor day weekend. There is the Pub Out Back right across the street from East Burke Sports, however I would stick with beer and apps there, typical pub grub. The Tammarack Grill (I think that is the name) in the ski lodge at Burke Mountain ihas decent food when we were there last year, slightly more upscale and they had good beverages and some live music.

      For lunch, the general store where everyone congregates makes awesome subs, pizzas and calzones. Will they win awards etc. no, but this is the NEK, fresh comfort food served with a smile is what you want. There is a killer diner in Lyndonville (I think it is Lyndonville) along the main drag from Rt 91 that is the b-fast place of choice.

      For tru upscale dining, people have good things to say about the Wildflower Inn, very nice place to stay (spa etc.).

      If this is your first trip to KT, you are in for a treat.


      1. re: River19
        stroshow3 RE: River19 Aug 24, 2008 10:05 AM

        Is the Old Cutter Inn (in Burke) still around? I've had some good meals there although it was definitely a few years ago.

        1. re: stroshow3
          melissaosu RE: stroshow3 Aug 27, 2008 11:52 AM

          I think the Cutter Inn is gone. Miss Lyndonville is a must for breakfast. If looking for a beer, visit the good folks at Trout River across the street. Have fun biking!

          1. re: melissaosu
            bm_vt RE: melissaosu Aug 27, 2008 01:00 PM

            In St. JOhnsbury, be sure to go to Elements. It's excellent. Make a reservation to be assured you can get it. The Creamery in Danville is another good choice-I'd opt to eat downstairs in the pub.
            I secodn the Miss Lyndonville, especially for breakfast!

            1. re: bm_vt
              ctbrit RE: bm_vt Sep 2, 2008 08:23 AM

              Thanks for all of the recommendations: here's what we ended up with-

              Stopped at Carpenter and Main in Norwich on the way up for Dinner Friday night.We sat in the Bistro side of this cozy & charming restaurant - service & menu were excellent - lots of local foods, a good mix of simple and more complex dishes. I had the beet & goats cheese salad and the flatbread special (mozzarella, spinach, mushroom & garlic). Salad was great, flatbread OK (base was a bit blah), T had the burger in homemade english muffin with salad & fries (local beef etc) this was excellent & the fries were out of this world. We finished with the berry shortcake - wild blackberries, berry sauce & we substituted homemade ice cream for the whipped cream - excellent.

              Sat am went to Dylan's cafe in St Johnsbury 'cos we wanted to go to the farmers market. Breakfast was OK - I had crepes with berry filling - nice pancakes (not thin enough to be crepes, not thick enough for normal US pancakes) - too much filling. T had the breakfast burrito - too much cheese, not enough salsa.

              For lunch (after riding) we ate at the River Garden Cafe in East Burke, had a good salad special - grilled chicken, blueberries, almonds etc, and an OK pasta/creamy pesto. Nice cafe with tables overlooking their flower garden.

              Sat evening went to Elements - reservation was a good idea! - restaurant is in a converted mill & decor/layout is lovely. Menu was promising - more local foods and options of large & small plates. Food was excellent - I had smoked trout cakes (large pieces of trout inside, nicely crispy on the outside), followed by Duck confit salad which was fantastic, T had tomato & corn soup (really fresh tasting & great) & the ribs - good ribs, too big a portion, fantastic coleslaw (with kale as well as the usual cabbage etc), we ordered a side of curried carrots which missed the mark - nearly raw carrots in a lot of red curry sauce.. Overall we enjoyed the restaurant & would go back but the service suffered, particularly towards the end of the evening - we waited a long time to order dessert - so long that we decided to pass & other tables were also looking concerned about the timing..

              We were planning on the Miss Lyndonville diner for breakfast on Sunday but we had to cut short our trip & drive straight back to CT on Sunday. We did manage to stop on the way back for breakfast snacks at King Arthur in Norwich (excellent) & lunch at Simon Pearce in Queechy - more local foods - lamb burger (fantastic) & duck hash (amazing).

              Hope to get back up there again soon - the bike trails are fantastic


              1. re: ctbrit
                lost marbles RE: ctbrit Sep 14, 2009 07:40 PM

                This is probably a little dated to reply to, but I had to get in my 2c worth. Our dinner in the 'fine dining' side of Carpenter and Main was a big disappointment. I had been so excited because we were fans of Peter Gaylor and Rebecca Cunningham of 1990's Lyme NH D'Artagnan fame, but Bruces food did not live up to his resume.

      2. re: DonShirer
        travelames RE: DonShirer Sep 1, 2009 05:57 PM

        It's been a year since the post above, thought I would give an update. We went to East Side tonight for dinner. The view and the staff were great. We asked if we could bring our dogs on the patio... while it was too busy for the main patio, they let us bring our dogs to the patio on the other side of the restaurant, which was empty. So we had our own private little dining area.

        Unfortunately, the food was not great, not sure if the economy has cut into their quality. Instead of a bread basket, we were given a basket of what seemed like Nabisco or Kraft crackers. When asked if the meat was local, we were told that it was unlikely since all their food came from SYSCO (www.sysco.com). We had the maple bbq burger with fries and a gorgonzola steak salad. The burger was too sweet from what was likely not really maple syrup and the green beans in the salad were water logged.

        I would recommend this place for drinks on the patio.

        1. re: travelames
          velotrain RE: travelames Sep 2, 2009 10:10 PM

          Lago Trattoria is a MUCH better choice in Newport - no view, but excellent food (not SYSCO).

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