Vacationing in VT - need suggestions for great restaurants and things to do
I'm traveling to VT for the first time in about a week and I need suggestions of where to go and things not to miss while I am there. My boyfriend is a real beer person and has already expressed interest in visiting Long Trail, Harpoon and Magic Hat. I however am more into Wine/Hard Cider. I think there are a number of places I can visit along those lines as well.
Also since it's fall, I would love some suggetions of great farms to visit that might have a fun corn maze to try.
Here is a sense of where I plan to visit: Staying a couple of nights in Woodstock, then heading to Burlington for a couple more nights then ending the week in Waitsfield.
Any insight would be much appreciated because there is only so much I can gather from all the tour books I am reading through.
Thanks so much in advance!
Just saw your post so I'm probably too late for your trip, but we recently visited the Woodstock area of Vermont and had a wonderful time. We stayed at the Maple Leaf Inn in Barnard, VT. The inn was so nice, we hated to leave each day, but did some area sightseeing anyway. Just up the road - literally walking distance - is the Barnard Inn. Small place with excellent food. Also went to the Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller Mansion and working farm as well as to Simon Pearce Glass Blowing & Restaurant - great venue overlooking a waterfall. Good food and wine - expensive glassware. We were there just before the "leaf peeping" season as we had always wanted to visit in the summertime. Lots of previous visits during the ski season. Hope you enjoyed your trip. We can't wait to go again.
If you and your boyfriend are passing through Brattleboro, in southern Vermont, there is a brew-pub there making some of the most interesting beer you will find anywhere on the east coast. In the manner of a no-nonsense German brewhaus, with long community tables and a bar, it is an idiosyncratic and very local (few tourists) place that is just waiting to be discovered. The beer, I say again, is absolutely extraordinary — built with loving care by the very shy Ray McNeil (he may be sitting with you at the bar, but you'd never know) it will stand up to any beer I've had anywhere in the world. There's usually a few "real ales" on tap (hand pumped w/ no extra carbonation) which most people in this country have never experienced. Go for the beer (he likes dark? Imperial Stout is to die for), the food is peanuts (so is the wine, sorry). Cheap. Kind of a zoo, especially when there's live music.
On the other hand, Brattleboro also has one of the finest restaurants in New England -- Peter Havens. I would recommend any night except Saturday when it can get too busy. Been there for around 20 years, and consistently as good as anything you'd get outside of Boston. The venison in a red wine sauce (it's sometimes on special New Zealand red flown in) made me want to pick up my plate an lick it. Swordfish in a sweet buerre blanc is always a favorite. Expensive but worth it.
I used this during the summer of 2007; many of the cheese makers on this map are equipped for drop in visitors. Sometimes you can get a tour, sometimes not. Either way, it's a perfect excuse to drive through some great country. Also consider stopping in at the Morgan Horse farm at the University of Vermont.
Since he's into beer I recommend The Alchemist, a brewpub in Waterbury (near Waitsfield). http://www.alchemistbeer.com/
There's a good working farm right around Woodstock--Billings Farm. http://www.billingsfarm.org/. I don't know any corn mazes near the areas you'll be, though; there's one in Rutland and one in Danville.
There are quite a few threads already about places to eat around Burlington. My favorites are Trattoria Delia and L'Amante (both Italian, albeit with very different styles). I've heard good things about the Green Room and the Blue Cat Café and Wine Bar, but haven't gotten to try them yet.