Nearly 9,000 Vermonters weighed in on the state’s 2015 “best of Vermont” awards, with a whopping 590,000-plus individual votes in 171 categories. In this, our 13th year of hosting what we call “the Daysies,” Seven Days doubled the pleasure: In the first round, Vermonters nominated their favorites in categories from best burger to best brew pub, best ski slope to best cider doughnuts. We tallied the write-in nominations, winnowed the field to 5-6 top finalists in each category and offered those up for a final public vote. The result is a locals' guide to "all the best" things to do, see, eat and buy in Vermont — enjoy!
A note about the “Outside Chittenden County” section. In Vermont, the largest population is inside Chittenden County, so it’s tough for anyone outside to top the Burlington area. But in some instances — say, best restaurant or best draft beer list — the passionate swell of votes from outside Chittenden County justified separating the category.