Bite Club | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Dining on a Dime: Bagitos in Montpelier

Posted By on Thu, May 25, 2017 at 7:28 AM

A quiet moment at Bagitos in Montpelier - SUZANNE PODHAIZER
  • Suzanne Podhaizer
  • A quiet moment at Bagitos in Montpelier
When I stop by Bagitos Bagel and Burrito Café on Montpelier's Main Street, I'm usually there for a bagel with lox. On my most recent visit, I decided to branch out. Why? Because I noticed that the burrito "bowl" ($8.99) could be made with Vermont Highland ground beef, and rounded out with rice, refried beans, lettuce, black olives and shredded cheese.

I added a scoop of guacamole ($1.25) and sat down at a sunny table, equipped with the Wi-Fi password and blueberry-chaga kombucha from Kingdom Harvest in Cabot. At $4, it pushed me past my "dime," but was probably really good for me.

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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Dining on a Dime: Mountain View Snack Bar of Barre

Posted By on Tue, May 23, 2017 at 4:13 PM

Double bacon cheeseburger, Mountain View Snackbar of Barre - HANNAH PALMER EGAN
  • Hannah Palmer Egan
  • Double bacon cheeseburger, Mountain View Snackbar of Barre
Summer may be just beginning, but Barre has already gained two new snack bars.

On May 2, the Snack Shack — that's the place with the big pink creemee cone at 515 North Main Street — returned after several seasons' closure. It's now open Tuesday through Sunday from 4 to 9 p.m. And on April 28, owners Ted and Alicia Colletti launched snack bar service at L&M Diner at 240 North Main Street, open Tuesday through Sunday from 2 to 9 p.m.

Snack bar service at the diner?

Yes. The Collettis own the Mountain View Snack Bars in Morrisville, Stowe and Hardwick. Usually, their Barre diner closes at 3 p.m. Now, the diner "closes" at 2 p.m., at which point staff from the Mountain View Snack Bar of Barre take the reins.

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Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Breakfast Club: Springy Wild Eggs and Hash

Posted By on Tue, May 9, 2017 at 4:29 PM

Potatoes, dandelions, ramps, eggs, mascarpone - HANNAH PALMER EGAN
  • Hannah Palmer Egan
  • Potatoes, dandelions, ramps, eggs, mascarpone
Here's a fun and easy spring thing. These eggs are more of a technique than a specific recipe. The idea is this: Sauté a bunch of stuff in a skillet — in this case, potatoes, sausage, dandelion greens and wild leeks, but you could use asparagus and bacon instead — then crack a few eggs in there and cook them until they're sunny-side up.

Add soft cheese (and blue cheese, too, why not?) for extra fun. The main thing is that everything should be fully cooked before the eggs go in. For something so easy, the end result is impressive to look at and so, so yummy!

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Thursday, May 4, 2017

First Bite: Shepherds Pub in Waitsfield

Posted By on Thu, May 4, 2017 at 3:43 PM

The fireplace at Shepherds Pub in Waitsfield - SUZANNE PODHAIZER
  • Suzanne Podhaizer
  • The fireplace at Shepherds Pub in Waitsfield
Above the fireplace at Shepherds Pub in Waitsfield hangs the head of an animal, its dark eyes watching the dining room. But this trophy is no triumph of taxidermy — it's a puffy, fabric sheep head, a faint smile on its sewn-on lips. It's a cute, innocuous nod to Vermont's hunting culture.

It's also an indication of the restaurant's theme. Located in the same building as the Mad River Woolery — a mini-mill that processes small batches of local fleece into felt and yarn — the spot, which opened last December, serves up lamb and beef from nearby farms in its signature shepherd's pie.

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Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Dining on a Dime: Bueno Y Sano, South Burlington

Posted By on Tue, May 2, 2017 at 2:14 PM

Carnitas grilled salad, Bueno Y Sano - HANNAH PALMER EGAN
  • Hannah Palmer Egan
  • Carnitas grilled salad, Bueno Y Sano
I have a soft spot for a good taco salad. While maintaining a sheen of healthfulness, they boast representation from all five major food groups. You can get them with fatty meat, softened beans, all kinds of salsa, avocado...  With all that going on, I'll never understand why some people think they need dressing, to boot.

Anecdotally, I don't remember taco salads existing prior to the early aughts. But when they appeared in my college cantina  circa 2004, they were an instant campus sensation. You could get a huge flour tortilla, molded into the shape of a bowl, fried to a brittle crisp, loaded with romaine lettuce, and topped with all manner of Tex-Mex goodness and a zigzag of that creepy, amazing, squirtable sour cream.

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Sunday, April 30, 2017

Sweet Stuff: Sampling the Vermont Maple Festival in Saint Albans

Posted By on Sun, Apr 30, 2017 at 11:00 AM

Vermont Maple Festival - SUZANNE PODHAIZER
  • Suzanne Podhaizer
  • Vermont Maple Festival
I had my muck boots on and was prepared to forage for fiddleheads when my phone rang. A group of friends — including Ed, who grew up near L.A. and had never tasted pure maple syrup — were getting ready to head to St. Albans for the 51st annual Vermont Maple Festival. Did I want to join them?

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Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Dining on a Dime: Central Market Taste of Asia

Posted By on Tue, Apr 11, 2017 at 1:41 PM

Central Market Taste of Asia - SUZANNE PODHAIZER
  • Suzanne Podhaizer
  • Central Market Taste of Asia
If you walk past 242 North Winooski Avenue in Burlington — which houses Central  Market Taste of Asia — you can't tell a restaurant is tucked inside. From the outside, the spot resembles a strip-mall mom-and-pop shop.

And so it is: Upon walking in, visitors might notice the cascade of bananas hanging from the ceiling. Or the long line of people waiting to buy tropical fruits, candy and Asian groceries. Shelves are crammed with items such as grass jelly, boxes of shrimp crackers and bags of spices.

However, off to the left of the front door is a small seating area where people can sit to eat takeout, or a full meal made up of Indian and Nepali specialties.

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Friday, March 31, 2017

Dining on a Dime: Folino's Pizza in Shelburne

Posted By on Fri, Mar 31, 2017 at 3:00 PM

Scallop and bacon pizza - SUZANNE PODHAIZER
  • Suzanne Podhaizer
  • Scallop and bacon pizza
Sometimes, sharing lunch with a friend is the best way to dine on a dime. Examining the online menu, I determined that I could have an inexpensive, balanced meal at Folino's in Shelburne — if I split the cost of a pie.

The wood-fired pizza joint is located on Route 7, in the same complex that is home to Fiddlehead Brewing Company. It also sits directly across the road from Shelburne Vineyard, which means that food tourists and locals alike frequent the spot.

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Thursday, March 30, 2017

Land O'Lakes Buys Vermont Creamery: 10 Questions for Allison Hooper

Posted By on Thu, Mar 30, 2017 at 9:06 PM

Cultured butter from Vermont Creamery - COURTESY OF VERMONT CREAMERY
  • Courtesy of Vermont Creamery
  • Cultured butter from Vermont Creamery
On Wednesday afternoon, March 29, news circulated through the Vermont fooderati that Vermont Creamery had been sold to Minnesota cheese-and-butter giant Land O'Lakes for an undisclosed sum (yes, we asked how much, to no avail).

Allison Hooper and Bob Reese cofounded Vermont Butter & Cheese Company from a barn in Brookfield in 1984. Thirty-three years later the business, which changed its name to Vermont Creamery in 2013, brings in tens of millions of dollars annually and employs about 100 Vermonters full time.

While representatives from the creamery and from Land O'Lakes have been forthcoming since news of the sale broke yesterday, many Vermonters were left wondering what it would all mean. Would the company stay in Vermont? What would happen to current employees, and to the farmers from whom the creamery buys milk? Would the chèvre, cultured butter and soft-ripened cheeses be different now?

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Friday, March 24, 2017

Pizzeria Verità to Buy Trattoria Delia and Sotto Enoteca

Posted By on Fri, Mar 24, 2017 at 5:20 PM

Griffeon Chuba with a hot pie at Pizzeria Verità - FILE: MATTHEW THORSEN
  • File: Matthew Thorsen
  • Griffeon Chuba with a hot pie at Pizzeria Verità
The owners of Pizzeria Verità, a popular Italian restaurant on St. Paul Street in Burlington, have been looking to expand their business for some time. They checked out possibilities in Cincinnati, Ohio, and Portland, Maine, among other places, co-owner Leslie McCrorey Wells told Seven Days.

Then they looked at a bit closer to home — next door — and made a deal.

Wells and her business partner, John Rao, are buying Trattoria Delia and Sotto Enoteca from Tom and Lori Delia. The Delias opened "Tratt" 24 years ago. The Italian restaurant a few steps north of Verità is known for its antipasto platter, housemade pastas and filet mignon, among other specialties. Sotto is the associated wine bar next door that serves mainly small plates, craft cocktails and, of course, wine.

The new owners expect to take over the neighboring establishments in the second week of April, according to Wells.

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