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Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Waterworks Food + Drink Closes for Foreseeable Future

Posted By on Tue, Nov 17, 2020 at 2:44 PM

Waterworks Food + Drink - MATTHEW THORSEN ©️ SEVEN DAYS
  • Matthew Thorsen ©️ Seven Days
  • Waterworks Food + Drink
Waterworks Food + Drink in Winooski stopped in-house dining and takeout service on Tuesday and will remain closed for the foreseeable future, according to owner David Abdoo. He said the 285-seat restaurant on the Winooski River will reopen for business when it's viable to do so.

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Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Burlington's Mawuhi African Market to Vacate Old North End Space

Posted By on Wed, Nov 4, 2020 at 8:24 PM

Pat Bannerman - SALLY POLLAK ©️ SEVEN DAYS
  • Sally Pollak ©️ Seven Days
  • Pat Bannerman
After 13 years operating Mawuhi African Market in a corner building in the Old North End, Pat Bannerman will leave the space at the end of the year, she said.

Jason Lin of Burlington purchased the building at 160 North Winooski Ave. a year ago. He told Seven Days on Tuesday that he plans to renovate and upgrade the structure, and perhaps open his own business at the site of the market.

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Thursday, October 29, 2020

Healthy Living Market & Café Opens in Williston

Posted By on Thu, Oct 29, 2020 at 7:00 AM

Healthy Living Market & Cafe in Williston - COURTESY OF HEALTHY LIVING
  • Courtesy of Healthy Living
  • Healthy Living Market & Cafe in Williston
Healthy Living Market & Café opens its second location in Chittenden County on Thursday, October 29, with a branch at 129 Market Street in Williston.

The new store is about half the size of the South Burlington location, or 18,000 square feet, according to Nina Lesser-Goldsmith, who owns the business with her mother, founder Katy Lesser, and brother, Eli Lesser-Goldsmith.  The Williston store offers the same product categories and departments as the original outlet, Nina Lesser-Goldsmith explained, but with a smaller selection of  items within the departments. The new store employs 65 people.

“We’ve always wanted to expand our footprint in our home community,” she said. “For a long time, we didn’t think we could make people happy with a store that was smaller than our first [one]. But smaller stores that support smaller communities are what people want.”

The café in the Williston store is the most beautiful and prominent aspect of the site, Lesser-Goldsmith noted.

Café service has been modified for COVID-19, with adaptations that include salads made-to-order by a staffer rather than as a self-service food bar. Seating will be available inside and outside when the mask mandate is no longer in effect, according to Lesser-Goldsmith.

“We can’t in good conscience allow people to unmask in the store and consume food” at a business that provides an essential service, she said.

Healthy Living is launching a prepared foods/deli/café program, HL Fresh, under the direction of chef Matt Jennings. Offerings will include meals that are ready to be cooked at home, meals ready to eat (without cooking), and rotating daily specials, Lesser-Goldsmith said.
From left: Nina Lesser-Goldsmith, Katy Lesser, Eli Lesser-Goldsmith at October 28 ribbon cutting - COURTESY OF HEALTHY LIVING
  • Courtesy of Healthy Living
  • From left: Nina Lesser-Goldsmith, Katy Lesser, Eli Lesser-Goldsmith at October 28 ribbon cutting
The opening of the Williston store comes after months of an "extremely busy” spell at the flagship South Burlington location, Lesser-Goldsmith said.

“People are really relying on grocery stores [during the pandemic], and we’re happy and proud to be able to serve so many people so well,” she added.

“It’s the hardest success I’ve ever had,” Lesser-Goldsmith continued. “My staff are absolutely heroes. They come to work every day. They’re brave. They face all kinds of people. They do it with a smile, and I could not be more grateful to them.”

Healthy Living in Williston is open daily from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. In addition to the two Vermont locations, the business that Lesser started in 1986 has a branch in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.

"Vermont is our home and we love it here," Lesser-Goldsmith said.  "And we're so proud to create 65 new jobs in this community and serve a wider audience of customer."

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Friday, July 17, 2020

Vermont Maple Business on Market Due to Canadian Border Closure

Posted By on Fri, Jul 17, 2020 at 11:34 AM

Tonewood Maple founder Dori Ross - COURTESY OF DENNIS CURRAN
  • Courtesy of Dennis Curran
  • Tonewood Maple founder Dori Ross
With the recent extension of the border closing between the U.S. and Canada until August 21, entrepreneur Dori Ross has decided to put her Vermont-based specialty maple products company up for sale.

Ross founded Tonewood Maple in the Mad River Valley in 2012 during the 25 years the Canadian native lived in the U.S. In 2017, Ross, her husband and their three children decided to move from Vermont back to Canada.

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Thursday, July 16, 2020

Iconic Sonny's Blue Benn Diner for Sale

Posted By on Thu, Jul 16, 2020 at 12:01 PM

Sonny's Blue Benn Diner in April 2019 - FILE: JANA SLEEMAN ©️ SEVEN DAYS
  • File: Jana Sleeman ©️ Seven Days
  • Sonny's Blue Benn Diner in April 2019
On July 11, after close to 50 years of ownership,  the Monroe family listed Bennington's landmark Sonny's Blue Benn Diner for sale for just under $600,000.

Broker Paul Carroccio of TPW Real Estate's Manchester office said he already has a trio of solid prospects among many calls of interest.

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Monday, July 13, 2020

State Allocates Millions for Hunger Relief Program Operated by Restaurants

Posted By on Mon, Jul 13, 2020 at 5:53 PM

ShiftMeals at the Skinny Pancake commissary in Winooski - COURTESY OF SHIFTMEALS
  • Courtesy of ShiftMeals
  • ShiftMeals at the Skinny Pancake commissary in Winooski
In late March, about a week after Gov. Phil Scott ordered restaurants to close to stem the spread of the coronavirus, the Skinny Pancake turned its commissary kitchen in Winooski into the cooking site of a program called ShiftMeals.

The initiative was designed to provide free meals to restaurant workers, musicians and other Vermonters who lost their jobs during the pandemic and were in need of food assistance.

ShiftMeals then formed a partnership with the Vermont Foodbank to expand its reach. The program currently has 18 distribution sites around the state and has provided 50,000 meals to Vermonters in need, with a goal of distributing 100,000 meals by year's end, according to ShiftMeals director Jean Hamilton.

Now ShiftMeals is serving as a model for a statewide initiative, backed by $5 million in government funding, in which restaurants around the state will use their facilities and employees to help feed Vermonters who are experiencing food insecurity. The new program, called Everyone Eats, was announced Monday morning at a press conference outside the Skinny Pancake’s Lake Street restaurant in Burlington.

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Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Magic Hat Cofounder Alan Newman Buys ArtsRiot

Posted By on Wed, Jul 1, 2020 at 3:46 PM

ArtsRiot - MELISSA PASANEN
  • Melissa Pasanen
  • ArtsRiot
Alan Newman has purchased the Burlington restaurant and live music venue ArtsRiot.  Newman, ArtsRiot cofounders Felix Wai and PJ McHenry, as well as partner George Lambertson, announced the deal in a press release on Wednesday.

"We put everything we had into creating and growing ArtsRiot over the years, but our time has come to move on and we are excited to hand the reins over to Alan," Wai, McHenry and Lambertson wrote in the release.

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Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Vermont Retailers Incentivize Customers to Mask Up

Posted By on Tue, Jun 2, 2020 at 2:26 PM

Cheese & Wine Traders team members wearing masks - COURTESY CHEESE & WINE TRADERS
  • Courtesy Cheese & Wine Traders
  • Cheese & Wine Traders team members wearing masks
The Vermont Retail & Grocers Association has launched a social media campaign to encourage customers to wear masks when shopping inside retail businesses.

Vermonters who post a photo of themselves on social media wearing a mask outside a local retailer with the tag #maskforthewin will be entered in a weekly prize giveaway.  The organization represents about 800 retailers in Vermont, as well as another 250 suppliers to the industry.

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Saturday, May 23, 2020

Short Order for Restaurants: Two Months Closed, Two Days to Open

Posted By on Sat, May 23, 2020 at 2:17 PM


Spot on the Dock in Burlington on Friday evening - LUKE AWTRY
  • Luke Awtry
  • Spot on the Dock in Burlington on Friday evening
Jackie Oktay has been busy homeschooling her kids, converting two restaurants to takeout businesses, and keeping 40 people employed. So she missed the news on Wednesday that restaurants could open for outdoor dining on Friday. They'd been ordered to stay closed for two months as part of the state's effort to rein in the coronavirus.

Oktay, co-owner of Istanbul Kebab House in Burlington and Tuckerbox in White River Junction,  found out Thursday morning  that restaurants got the green light.

“I’m like, ‘Oh my God,’ ‘’ Oktay said by telephone Thursday afternoon. “The wheels start turning: What the heck do I have to do now?”

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Friday, May 8, 2020

Vermont Dairy Farmers Give Away 4,000 Gallons of Milk

Posted By on Fri, May 8, 2020 at 6:13 PM


Elle Purrier handing over a gallon of milk Friday in St. Albans - SALLY POLLAK
  • Sally Pollak
  • Elle Purrier handing over a gallon of milk Friday in St. Albans
Two problems in Vermont — food insecurity and dairy surplus — converged Friday afternoon in a St. Albans parking lot, where Franklin County farmers gave away 2,500 gallons of milk to a steady stream of Vermonters.

“We come from a lot of generations of dairy farmers up here in Franklin County, and we love our community so much,” said Meghan St. Pierre, 26, of  Pleasant Valley Farms. “A lot of folks are struggling right now.”

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