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Friday, October 19, 2018

Dining on a Dime: UVMMC Garden Atrium

Posted By on Fri, Oct 19, 2018 at 4:25 PM


Carrot fritters and roast vegetables - SALLY POLLAK
  • Sally Pollak
  • Carrot fritters and roast vegetables

A voluntary trip to the hospital is not a bad thing. Such an outing comes with benefits if the destination is the Garden Atrium café at the University of Vermont Medical Center.

Cost and personal choice are two of the pluses. Local and fresh are two more. With a longstanding commitment to sourcing local ingredients, UVMMC purchases food from more than 70 regional farmers and producers, according to its website.

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Friday, September 14, 2018

Drink Up: Monarch & the Milkweed

Posted By on Fri, Sep 14, 2018 at 3:45 PM

Tonka Puff at Monarch & the Milkweed - SALLY POLLAK
  • Sally Pollak
  • Tonka Puff at Monarch & the Milkweed
On a recent night at Monarch & the Milkweed, there was a When Harry Met Sally moment. It happened when bartender Eddie DiDonato set my drink on the marble bar in front of me. The foamy cocktail towered over the top of the glass at an artful angle, a straw balanced on top like a seesaw.

“So what do I have to order to get one of those?” a man at a nearby bar stool asked. “It looks amazing.”

No one has to fake an orgasm, a la Meg Ryan in the aforementioned Hollywood hit, to get what I got. But it does take a whole lot of shakin'.

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Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Dining on a Dime: Nomad Coffee (South End Station)

Posted By on Tue, Sep 11, 2018 at 2:13 PM

Early autumn lunch at Nomad Coffee in Burlington - SALLY POLLAK
  • Sally Pollak
  • Early autumn lunch at Nomad Coffee in Burlington
The menu at Nomad Coffee (South End Station) is a seasonal road map as well as a choice of meals. Chef Suzanne Podhaizer presents two lunch options: late summer or early autumn. From there, the selection narrows to meat or vegetarian, brown rice or greens.

I visited the little café on Flynn Avenue last week — a time span in which the temperature dropped from the 90s to sweatshirt weather. Hoping to nudge summer along, I ordered Podhaizer’s autumn creation: roasted squash, caramelized onions, greens, cider sauce and toasted pecans. I chose lentils over chicken, and these were served hot in a mug on the side. I spooned the lentils onto my veggies bite by bite, forming a kind of mini-stew on my plate and delighting in a flavorful and healthy, all-local $10 lunch.

Podhaizer, a former food writer at Seven Days, was chef-owner of Salt Café in Montpelier for five years. At Nomad, she is collaborating with owners Andrew Sepic and Nicole Grinstead to bring food to their second coffee/espresso/tea business — the first one opened in Essex Junction two years ago.

The new café, open weekdays from  7 a.m. to 3 p.m., is at the end of a hallway in the Flynndog building. It occupies the space that formerly housed the South End outpost of Chef’s Corner. Customers order at the counter and food is delivered to your table. The restaurant opens onto an outdoor deck that has several picnic tables, quiet and lovely in late summer and early autumn.

Podhaizer continues her seasonal theme this week but she presents a new menu, offering spiced beef or black beans with mashed potatoes, roasted bell peppers, cherry tomatoes and summer squash (late summer) and chicken or lentils with winter squash, goat cheese, toasted walnuts and brown butter cider sauce (early autumn).

She told me she plans to expand the menu slowly but will continue to make weekly veggie and meat specials to eat with greens, grains or a combination of the two.

On my way home from Nomad, I stopped to talk to a man who I’d seen eating lunch there. Kim Hubbard, a program manager at the Howard Center, told me he discovered Nomad in place of Chef’s Corner, where he used to eat.

“I just like the food over here,” Hubbard said of Nomad. “I like it plated and served. It’s quiet and the people are really friendly.”  He ate last week's late summer lunch, meat version ($12): spiced beef with roasted tomatoes, corn, summer squash and red pepper-parsley sauce.

“It was quite wonderful,” Hubbard said. “They have a niche there, and I hope people find it.”

Dining on a Dime is a weekly series featuring well-made, filling bites (something substantial enough to qualify as a small meal or better) for $12 or less. Know of a tasty dish we should feature? Drop us a line: food@sevendaysvt.com.

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Thursday, September 6, 2018

Burlington's Magnolia Bistro Shuts Down

Posted By on Thu, Sep 6, 2018 at 1:04 PM

Magnolia Bistro is closing - FILE: KATIE JICKLING
  • File: Katie Jickling
  • Magnolia Bistro is closing
Magnolia Bistro announced Thursday morning on its Facebook page that it is “closing its doors in Burlington.” The restaurant at 1 Lawson Lane, which served breakfast and lunch, added that it is “actively seeking investors to lift us to a new city somewhere between South Burlington and Key West.”

The restaurant’s closing comes months after Magnolia owner Shannon Reilly posted profanity-laced comments on Facebook  about people with addiction issues and the city’s efforts to address the health issue.

"The junkies should detox or die," he wrote. "Sorry. So fuckin pathetic employing people spaced out on bupe. Fuckin useless. Let them die."

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Friday, August 31, 2018

Dining on a Dime: Citizen Cider

Posted By on Fri, Aug 31, 2018 at 4:44 PM

Mushroom tacos at Citizen Cider - SALLY POLLAK
  • Sally Pollak
  • Mushroom tacos at Citizen Cider
"What’s for dinner?" could be the most-asked question around. "I don’t know yet" is the standard answer — and it’s the one I got at around 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday morning when I called Citizen Cider to ask what the  $10 special was for the weekly Supper Club.

The nonanswer, though a bit surprising from a restaurant, was nonetheless familiar. Who knows what’s for dinner until about half an hour before you start making it?

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Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Vermont Symphony Orchestra Debuts a New Collaboration: Beer

Posted By on Tue, Aug 28, 2018 at 1:27 PM

Jukebox starts its third season September 1 at ArtsRiot - COURTESY OF ELLEN VOORHEIS
  • Courtesy of Ellen Voorheis
  • Jukebox starts its third season September 1 at ArtsRiot
Not long ago, it was considered impolite to let out a cough during a classical music concert. Now audience members can clink their glasses and cheer.

That is, if they’re listening to a Vermont Symphony Orchestra string quartet perform at ArtsRiot in Burlington, site of a musical series called Jukebox. The collaboration of the symphony and the bar kicks off its third season this Saturday night, September 1, at the Pine Street club.

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Friday, August 24, 2018

Schmeared? Myer's International Bagel Mascot Mystery Solved

Posted By on Fri, Aug 24, 2018 at 12:13 PM

Who wore it better? - SASHA GOLDSTEIN; ST-VIATEUR BAGEL
  • Sasha Goldstein; St-Viateur Bagel
  • Who wore it better?
A baffling cross-border bagel mystery turns out to have a simple answer.

Food website Eater Montreal posted a story Thursday with the headline, “A Vermont Bakery Mysteriously Has the Same Logo as St-Viateur Bagel.” St-Viateur Bagel is a famous Montréal shop, opened in 1957 and still running 24 hours a day on Rue Saint Viateur O. The Vermont bakery in question is Myer’s Bagels, the Montréal-style bagel shop that first opened on Burlington’s Pine Street in 1996.

The headline brings up a good point: The two bagel logos do appear to be close to exactly the same. But the rest of the speculative story is filled with holes.

The easy-to-obtain answer involves Lloyd Squires. The Montréal native spent years learning the art of bagel making from Myer Lewkowicz, the St-Viateur founder. When Lewkowicz died, Squires moved to Burlington and opened a shop he named in his mentor’s honor, said Adam Jones, one of Myer’s owners.

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Thursday, August 23, 2018

Juice for the People to Close Friday

Posted By on Thu, Aug 23, 2018 at 2:52 PM

Mike Winters of Juice for the People - SALLY POLLAK
  • Sally Pollak
  • Mike Winters of Juice for the People
Mike Winters has been an art teacher, a divorce lawyer, a juice-maker and a vegetable farmer. The latter two gigs are joined via Winters’ business,
Juice for the People, in which he makes juice using vegetables and herbs that he grows at a farm at the Intervale in Burlington.

Now Winters is ready to move on again. He is closing his juice business, which operates as a concession at City Market/Onion River Co-op in Burlington’s South End, on Friday, August 24.

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Monday, March 26, 2018

With New Pastry Chef, Honey Road Gets a Little Sweeter

Posted By on Mon, Mar 26, 2018 at 6:40 PM


Chocolate-date cake at Honey Road restaurant - COURTESY OF HONEY ROAD
  • Courtesy of Honey Road
  • Chocolate-date cake at Honey Road restaurant
Diners at Honey Road restaurant in Burlington have likely noticed additions to the dessert menu in recent weeks. They're the creations of new pastry chef Amanda Wildermuth, 29.  She had been working in that role at Monarch & the Milkweed since it opened in August 2016.

“They [Honey Road] were looking to expand, and I jumped at the opportunity to be the pastry chef,” Wildermuth said. “I think Honey Road is an amazing restaurant, and Cara and Allison have a really great thing going here.” She was referring to co-owners Cara Chigazola-Tobin and Allison Gibson.

Since assuming her position about a month ago, Wildermuth has expanded the offerings by riffing on modern desserts and giving them a Middle Eastern twist and flavor. She's also making  traditional desserts, and the pita and crackers that are served with dips that typically start a meal at Honey Road.

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Thursday, March 22, 2018

Willow's Bagel Bakery To Open in Downtown Burlington

Posted By on Thu, Mar 22, 2018 at 2:21 PM


Tyler Bean at Willow's - LAUREN MAZZOTTA
  • Lauren Mazzotta
  • Tyler Bean at Willow's
A mini food court is taking shape in downtown Burlington, where a pizza place, a bar and a bagel shop  will soon share a building at 71 South Union Street.

The pizzeria, Folino's, opened in January on the west side of the brick building. The two other businesses — Stonecutter Spirits and Willow's — will join Folino's later this spring.

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