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Rí Rá the Irish Local & Whiskey Room
Find a friendly Irish pub experience with a full menu, local craft brews and single-malt Scotches. Live music and brunch on the weekend.
Harvest Market
Salads, sandwiches, entrées and baked goods are made fresh daily at the gourmet take-out café, which also offers a selection of cheeses, meats and wines.
Joyce's Noodle House
The style of cuisine here traces its roots back to the Shang Dynasty, and all noodles and sauces are homemade. Regulars love the dim sum with scallion pancakes.
The Daily Planet
Since 1982, this downtown standby has been a hip place to eat and enjoy local art and music. The menu ranges from cemita sliders to pan-roasted lamb lollipops.
The Tavern at the Essex Resort & Spa
Reimagined pub fare meets local ingredients here. Pair your meal with a brew from an extensive 32-tap draft list, or enjoy a specialty cocktail on the seasonal outdoor garden patio while listening to live music.
August First Bakery & Café
Laptops and tablets are off-limits at this friendly screen-free café — all the better to strike up a conversation over freshly baked pastries, soups, salads and sandwiches.
Boyden Valley Winery & Spirits
In a restored 1875 carriage barn, visitors sample distilled spirits and liqueurs as well as ice and traditional wines and ciders crafted in the old-world tradition. Tour the tank and barrel room, then order a gourmet cheese plate.
Barrio Bakery
By day, this neighborhood bakery in the heart of the Old North End turns out breads, pastries, soups and sandwiches. Stop in for an evening pizza Tuesday through Saturday.
Natural Provisions Deli & Café
The salad bar and hot buffet feature local, organic foods, and the deli meats are all natural. Entrée and soup specials change daily.
Healthy Living Market & Café
The café, hot buffet and salad bar offer international cuisine made with natural, organic and local foods. Regulars come for pressed-to-order panini, house-baked pastries, fresh juices and smoothies, and the full-service coffee bar.
City Market/Onion River Co-op
People of all stripes converge at Burlington's downtown grocery cooperative. Buy some kale, get a sandwich fresh-made at the deli or peruse the hot-bar offerings.
West Meadow Farm Bakery
Gluten-free goodies such as Outrageous Oatmeal Bread, Bodacious Brownies and Feelin' Groovy Granola are packed with personality. Take home gluten-free flour, stuffing mix or croutons for your own creation.
Jeff's Maine Seafood
What started in 1979 as a roadside fish stand is now a fine-dining restaurant serving pasta, surf and turf. Try the crab cakes with jalapeño-mango tartar sauce.
Upper Deck Pub
Above the Windjammer Restaurant, sports fans watch the game on flat-screen TVs over meals of steak, seafood, shepherd's pie or burgers. The specialty cocktails and microbrews are draws, too.
Idletyme Brewing Company
Specializing in seasonal comfort food and small-batch craft beer, this dog- and family-friendly brewpub comes with awesome perks, including an outdoor biergarten, lawn games and a fireside lounge.
Happy Belly Deli & Grill (Winooski)
Close to the Winooski Riverwalk, customers fill their bellies with panini, wraps, burgers, poutine and — in summer — scooped ice cream.
Asiana Noodle Shop
The subterranean spot serves comfort food from across Asia. Create your own soup with choices of broth, noodles and meat, or try dumplings and sushi.
Esperanza Restaurante
A Salvadoran man and Filipino woman teamed up to open this casual restaurant, where the fare includes pupusas, tamales, egg rolls and fried-chicken lollipops.
Michael's on the Hill
Elegant, ever-changing dishes highlight Vermont ingredients and the chef-owner's European roots.
The Gryphon
An elegant space in the Historic Vermont House — constructed in 1911 — brings back old-fashioned glamour with Southern-inflected farm-to-table dishes and classic cocktails. Weekend brunch.
Cozy up in a window booth for classic Himalayan dishes including momos, curries, thali platters and stews, best enjoyed with a mango lassi. Sunday is brunch only.
The Hall family has tended this orchard since the 1700s. Try the ice cider in the seasonal South End Café, which offers baked goods, sandwiches and heartier fare.
ArtsRiot (Restaurant)
"Destroy apathy" is the motto and mission of this restaurant, performing arts space and community gathering place. The market-driven menu changes nightly. On summer Fridays, a fleet of food trucks parks out back.
Blue Paddle Bistro
The artsy décor here includes a wooden canoe suspended over the bar. Food is inventive — think coffee-crusted pork tenderloin.
East West Café
Thailand native Samran Kaewkoet prepares authentic Isan cuisine to go. Try a noodle soup, chicken satay or traditional sticky rice dish.
Tiny Thai Restaurant
Tom kha, satay, stir-fries and curries take their cues from food carts and family tables in Thailand. Try the Talay Thai: mussels, shrimp, scallops, calamari and tilapia stir-fried with veggies in a spicy chile-basil sauce. No lunch on Sunday.
Ardelia's at Basin Harbor
Lakeside dining begins with a breakfast buffet and concludes with three-course dinners and award-winning wine lists. Dressy-casual attire requested. Open June through October.
Waterworks Food + Drink
Window seats are in high demand at this former textile mill overlooking the Winooski River. Pair a wood-fired flatbread with an inspired cocktail. Weekday lunch; weekend brunch.

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What do you cook in early spring?

  • Lots of pasta, potatoes and other carb-heavy stuff.
  • Winter things: squash, root veggies, the like.
  • I embrace non-local produce and go all-in for mangoes, baby-green salads and avocado toast.
  • I'm all about the early-spring salad: endives, radicchio and other bitter greens with shaved roots and eggs!
  • All of the above!

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