From Schnitzel to Strudel, Derby Line Village Inn Goes Euro | 7 Nights Spotlight | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Seven Days needs your financial support!

From Schnitzel to Strudel, Derby Line Village Inn Goes Euro 

click to enlarge Fritz Halbedl at he Derby Line Village Inn - MATTHEW THORSEN
  • matthew thorsen
  • Fritz Halbedl at he Derby Line Village Inn

Fritz Halbedl's culinary skills have sailed to all corners of the world. Born and raised in Austria, the chef spent more than a decade overseeing the dining program for the Royal Caribbean International fleet. Now he's dropped anchor in landlocked Vermont, where he serves up European-inflected fare and tales of his globe-trotting adventures.

Location Details Derby Line Village Inn
440 Main St.
Northeast Kingdom
Derby Line, VT

Halbedl and his wife, Paula, bought a stately home on Derby Line's Main Street several years ago. It was a lot of house for one couple. After restoring the 1901 building to its former glory, they opened the five-room Derby Line Village Inn and lodge-style restaurant in March 2014. Paula welcomes guests with the trademark hospitality of her deep South heritage, while Fritz handles the kitchen.

In winter, regulars often arrive by snowmobile; the inn lies a few hundred yards off a popular route. They come for an array of succulent housemade knockwurst and bratwurst, stuffed into skins that snap with every bite and bedded in mounds of lip-smacking house-fermented sauerkraut.

click to enlarge The Derby Line Village Inn - MATTHEW THORSEN
  • matthew thorsen
  • The Derby Line Village Inn

Other northern European specialties include schnitzels — tender cuts of chicken, veal or pork lightly breaded and pan-fried, served with potatoes or vegetables — and platters of roasted meats. All are best enjoyed in true Austrian fashion, with one of the German-style lagers on tap, a number of which hail from Stowe's Trapp Lager Brewery. Careful, though: These easy-drinking quaffs come in big pours, up to 22 ounces.

Additional entrées include steaks — New York strips dry-aged 21 days — fish and handmade pastas.

Though the food skews meaty and eastern European, Halbedl's New England and Québec-style dishes are also worth a taste. Poutine — made with hand-cut fries and Vermont curds — comes commingled with sauerbraten or chicken schnitzel. Flatbreads, fresh from an artisanal oven, are long and narrow, crusty and chewy. Order one "hunter-style," topped with hearty hunks of venison sausage from nearby Hollandeer Farm, cranberries, arugula, and a blend of Asiago and mozzarella.

But a world traveler like Halbedl knows when to stay true to his roots. He wisely does so for dessert, serving what is arguably Vermont's best strudel.

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

More By This Author

About The Author

Hannah Palmer Egan

Hannah Palmer Egan

Hannah Palmer Egan is a food and drink writer at Seven Days.

About the Artist

Matthew Thorsen

Matthew Thorsen

Matthew Thorsen was a photographer for Seven Days 1995-2018. Read all about his life and work here.

Speaking of Derby Line Village Inn


Comments are closed.

Since 2014, Seven Days has allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we’ve appreciated the suggestions and insights, the time has come to shut them down — at least temporarily.

While we champion free speech, facts are a matter of life and death during the coronavirus pandemic, and right now Seven Days is prioritizing the production of responsible journalism over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor. Or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2021 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401
Advertising Policy  |  Contact Us
Website powered by Foundation