Pin It

Stowe Overhaul 

Side Dishes: New chefs join old favorites

As summer brings bikers and hikers to replace skiers and riders in Stowe, two restaurants have made some more permanent swaps of their own. After a brief stint at Harrison’s Restaurant & Bar on Main Street, Curtis “Bear” Hillard has returned to his previous post at the Greenville Inn in Maine. The chef, who once assisted his mentor, Hartmut Handke, at the Bocuse d’Or World Cuisine Contest, helped take the menu at Harrison’s beyond basic steak and seafood.

“Chef Bear” left Harrison’s on short notice, but co-owner Andrew Kneale says he’s found a worthy replacement in Casey Christensen. For the past six and a half years, the New Hampshire native, a Johnson & Wales University alum, cooked at top restaurants in Aspen, Colo. Christensen is fresh from heading the kitchen at Piñons Restaurant in that city. He plans on updating the menu that Hillard left behind, but after less than a month in Vermont, he admits, “I’m just sort of getting my feet wet.”

In May, Jeremy Somerset took over the kitchen at Mr. Pickwick’s Pub at Ye Olde England Inne, just up the Mountain Road from Harrison’s. Somerset was part of the opening team at Solstice at Stowe Mountain Lodge, where he eventually served as sous-chef.

According to Mr. Pickwick’s owner Chris Francis, Somerset has already made a strong imprint on the aesthetic of the restaurant. “His philosophy is to use as many Vermont products as we can and support sustainable agriculture,” says Francis. Somerset left bangers and mash, and four other British classics on the menu, but updated the rest to include more seasonal options — think roasted Misty Knoll Farms chicken with pork-belly-studded cabbage, cranberry quinoa and honey jus; or duck breast and leg confit with brown-butter gnocchi and roasted beets.

Somerset’s plan also includes a new emphasis on Vermont beef. The inn now offers steak frites, and filet mignon from Vermont Highland Cattle Company. Francis says he and Somerset are hoping to replace their finely marbled Kobe steaks with an equivalent product from the Green Mountains.

Given that Francis is a music lover and performer, he’s quite keen on Mr. Pickwick’s new jazz brunch. Each Sunday, guests can enjoy a trio or quartet’s take on standards while dining on the deck.

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

Pin It

About The Author

Alice Levitt

Alice Levitt

AAN award-winning food writer Alice Levitt is a fan of the exotic, the excellent and automats. She wrote for Seven Days 2007-2015.


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Seven Days moderates comments in order to ensure a civil environment. Please treat the comments section as you would a town meeting, dinner party or classroom discussion. In other words, keep commenting classy! Read our guidelines...

Note: Comments are limited to 300 words.

foodie poll

What are you MOST interested in learning more about?

  • Food-related events, festivals and other gatherings
  • Bars and restaurants — where should I eat out?
  • Farms and agriculture — what's up with the people producing our food?
  • Issues: What are the social, environmental and economic impacts of my food choices?
  • How to cook better meals at home

View Results

Latest in Food News

Recent Comments

Social Club

Like Seven Days contests and events? Join the club!

See an example of this newsletter...

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2016 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So Champlain St Ste 5, Burlington, VT 05401
Website powered by Foundation