7-25-12, Day 37 – Day Off and to Burlington I Go!

Well I’m trying something new here as I stumble upon learning more things about WordPress.  Finally figured out I could insert an entire gallery of pictures instead of one picture at a time.  I think from the view of pictures, you will be able to identify what I’m referring to in my post.  It just saves me alot of time, otherwise, I’m at my computer screen forever!

It’s a beautiful day today . . . the skies are blue and temps are cool, probably not what you want to hear back home!  I started out my day at 6:30 am this morning and first thing on my mind was to get some breakfast and coffee!  My first stop was at the Red Hen Baking Company, http://www.redhenbaking.com/, located in Middlesex, VT.  What a neat place and kind of reminded my of Cafe Wren in Luck, WI when Dale and I took our drive up to the Apostle Islands.  My heart was set on having one of their scones, and although their website mentions they have almond/orange, they didn’t have any this morning, so I went for the lemon/currant scone wtih a light glaze of icing.  It was wonderful and their coffee was amazing!  One thing that can make or break a good meal, whether it’s breakfast, lunch or dinner, is the coffee!  Red Hen also has a small retail area filled with local cheeses, wines, crafts by local artists, and the best part of my visit there, seeing an old dutchess divider on my way out the door – how cool is that!

My next destination was supposed to be Shelbourne Farms, but I remembered that there was a Culinary/Baking & Pastry Arts school in Montpelier, VT.  So a little off course, but so worth it!  The New England Culinary Institute (NECI), www.neci.edu, has located downtown and their learning space of their bakery has windows so you can see in to watch what they’re doing.  You can see in the one picture, a student is mixing by hand in a large metal bowl which is on a stand.  I gathered she was making scones and intrigued by what she was doing, I knocked on the door and had the opportunity to talk briefly to one of the instructors.  That’s exactly what she was making.  Students mix scones by hand so they know the feel of the product, and then they go to the mixers.   They also have a full service bakery/cafe where they sell their products, La Brioche.  I did purchase an almond croissant, which I forgot to get a picture of before I ate it – sorry!  It was very good and lots of almond filling, which made it spectacular!  On the culinary side, NECI also had a full-service restaurant, Chef’s Table, but that is now out of business.  They did have some really neat flower boxes on the outside deck that had all types of herbs and tomato plants.

Back on track now and heading to Shelburne Farms, http://www.shelburnefarms.org/.  It was a neat place and they had a very nice store at the entrance.  There were samples of some of their cheeses and the smoked cheddar was excellent!  Otherwise, the usual tourist stuff and some items were made by local artists, which was nice to see.  To get to the Farm and other sites to see at Shelburne, you could take one of the 1 1/2 hour tours, where a covered wagon is pulled by either a truck or tractor.  There was also the option of walking the gravel trails, which I decided to do the later.  My main focus of  going to Shelburne Farms, was to see OBread.  Sarah (my landlord) asked for one thing if I made it to Shelburne Farms, and that was to purchase a loaf of olive bread, and I did.  I visited the rest of the building and could have gone on to see the other parts of Shelburne Farms, but I think I was getting ansy to see downtown Burlington.  So before I started back on the trail, I was a bit hungry and they have a small farm cart that has soups, sandwiches and salads, with most of the product being grown right on the farm.  I decided to try the chilled melon, cucumber and buttermilk soup, which was excellent and had a bit of a kick to it from the jalapeno pepper in it.

It’s now 1:30 pm and I decided I had plenty of time to visit the Church Street Marketplace, downtown Burlington.  Today was also the beginning of their annual sidewalk sale, pretty similar to our Maxwell Street Days in Madison.  I loved it in Burlington, and it made me feel a bit more at home.  I decided to find a place to eat a late lunch and the two places that were both recommended to me closed at 2:30 pm, so I just missed the lunch.  They didn’t reopen again until 5:00 pm.  A local resident suggested that I go to Leunig’s Bistro,   http://www.leunigsbistro.com/.  It was a bit more pricey than I would normally spend for lunch, but it was a nice change from my outings to the nearby chinese buffet close to where I’m renting.  I decided to go with one of the more inexpensive items on the menu, which was duck tacos.  They were really good and different, and I had such a nice waiter, plus I got a window seat and could watch the sidewalk sale.  I didn’t realize until I had been sitting there for about five minutes, that there was no window by my table and that made it even more cool, as they did have outdoor seating as well.  I then started towards the dock by Lake Champlain and there was an ice cream shanty selling creamees, which again is what they call soft serve here.  I usually go with my straight up vanilla, but thought since I’m in Vermont, I better try the maple creamee at least once, and I did.  It was super good and I enjoyed it all the way down to the docks and sat for awhile.  Decided before it got too late that I better head back, but wanted to make one more stop in town.  I heard there was another bakery a couple blocks over called August First Bakery, http://augustfirst.typepad.com/augustfirst/all-about-us.html.  This bakery is so cool, and I love how they deliver their baked goods in town by bicycle with a cart pulled behind – awesome!  I figured I had enough goodies for the day, so I bought myself a shirt.  Since the bakery is called August First, ‘August’ is a pretty special month for me, as it’s when I got married and it’s the month of my birthday!  As I walked towards the parking ramp, I came upon a hostel, which is the first one I’ve seen since I’ve been out here.

Well, that’s it for todays travels.  Finally drove in the driveway back where I rent at 7:00 pm, so it’s been a long day!


6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Melody
    Jul 27, 2012 @ 12:52:54

    Wow, love the pics you took and now I want to visit those places! The pictures of food you took look too pretty to eat! Maybe I can come up instead of Dale and visit those places before heading back??? Just suggesting…

    Hopefully by the time you get back, things will be green again here and you won’t miss VT so much. We’ve had a couple of storms and our electricity has been out a few times…once for almost 7 hours. But at least things are turning green again.


    • Pam Barnes
      Jul 28, 2012 @ 23:11:09

      There is alot to see and do out here. Glad you liked the pictures of the food, and I can assure you, it all tasted as good as it looked! Nice suggestion to come up instead of Dale, but been waiting a long time to see him. Nice try though, Melody:)

      Dale mentioned that there has been a few stores back home. Although the lawns are nice and green out here, not to mention all the mountains, I am so excited to get back home. Nice to visit here, but Wisconsin will always be my home:)


  2. dale barnes
    Jul 26, 2012 @ 22:57:42

    Looks like you had a great time in burlington great pictures!!! LOVE YOU!!!!


    • Pam Barnes
      Jul 28, 2012 @ 23:06:32

      Burlington reminds me alot of Madison, and was nice to be downtown during the sidewalk sale, which was alot like Maxwell Street Days. LOVE YOU MORE!!!!


  3. Gloria
    Jul 26, 2012 @ 21:50:20

    Looks and sounds like you must have had an enjoyable day!


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