Last week I ate some very good meals on my trip. Some were on my own and some were part of the group tour. I only had one not so great meal but that was at the food court at Quincy Market in Boston (I hate food courts, ugh!) and that was the last stop on the tour. The food is different "up North" in some ways, and the same in others. They do not serve picante sauce, ever and chicken fried steak or country fried steak do not appear on the menu!
On Monday night our group was on its own in Burlington, Vermont. So several of us walked to a local restaurant, The Farmhouse. They only serve food grown or raised in their local area, there were about 12 farms listed on a chalkboard as their suppliers. There was a card on the table that explained their philosophy. I took the card with me because I really liked what they were trying to portray to the community. Their idea is to support the rural nature and agriculture in Vermont and to offer good tasting, healthy food to their guests. They want this concept to be a new model for all restaurants.
In addition to their regular menu, each week they offer specials that feature whatever is in season for that week. Here were the specials for the week of October 3rd:
Pete's Greens Fennel Salad-featured a preserved lemon vinaigrette
Side of local cauliflower
Charcuterie Board-testa, rabbit terine, pork liver, mortadella, venison salami & bresaola
Island Creek Oysters-these were from Maine
House Cured Sardine Toast
Winding Brook Farm Lamb Burger
Champlain Valley Gingerbread Spiced Cheesecake (with cinnamon whipped cream)
So what did this Southern girl order? I went to the regular menu and ordered....meatloaf. Honestly, it was the only thing other than the chicken that I could really identify. The menu stated that it was pork and beef; the sides were mashed potatoes, carrots, and butter nut squash. And, there was gravy and mushrooms! I can honestly say it was fabulous and I ate everything. Then I ordered dessert! It was a pumpkin cheesecake pie which had a ginger snap crust, a layer of pumpkin cheesecake topped with a layer of pumpkin pie, and of course, fresh whipped cream and carmel drizzle. I thought I had died and gone to heaven!
I also had an excellent pulled pork sandwich at the Shelburne Museum. It was not in the Memphis tradition, but could quickly become a favorite! It had chipotle coleslaw and "fried root vegetables". No, I could not identify those little crunchy things but they were excellent! Viva La Pulled Pork Sandwich!
To make this quick I also ate salmon, crab cakes, what I hope is the last lobster of my life, chicken fricasse, basil pesto pasta, fish and chips, and I don't remember what else. I did eat clam chowder at every opportunity. Fortunately I did enough walking that I walked off all the good meals and the desserts.