Surprisingly good Pub Food and Great Beer – Summer Fun

The Vermont Pub and Brewery has been around for over 25 years – so the question is – how come I never ate there before? Answer – I thought it was more bar than restaurant – and I thought wrong.

It was one of those priceless Vermont summer evenings – daylight seems to last forever, and when the sun finally does decide to go down, the air still has that soft summer feel to it. I asked advice of Roger – the guy trying to sell me a Prius (more on that later) – and he recommended the Pub. I figured – why not!

I scored an outside table, and settled in for an easy evening. The newspaper cum menu was a nice start – and listed on the board was a yummy sounding Cajun Catfish for just $11.95. Ok – I could seriously handle that.

According to the informative menu (Prohibition ended on April 7, 1933 among other brew based tidbits) – the VPB has won lots of awards for their home brewed beer – and for just $1.25 they will give you a sample of any one of their flavors. You can even order a flight of samples. I opted for just one- their award winning, and car salesman suggested, Burly Irish Ale. Described as rich and malty – it was a small yet delightfully filling way to end my day. For dinner I tried their fried oysters (skip those next time), and for my main course – choose the catfish. That was exactly the right decision. The catfish was perfectly cooked – white and flaky, rich and delicious, perfectly seasoned. The potion of sweet potato fries was way too large – but they were delicous too.

Service was perfect – fast when needed, and they ignored me completely when I wanted to be ignored.

A B+ (fried oysters were just too thickly breaded to rate an A, beer was way too delicious to just give them a B. So B+ it is!)

Hana – Sushi in Burlington, VT – bit of a hit and miss at a great price

We did our research, and the Hana – an oversized empty space located in a shopping mall just off the highway in Burlington – got decent comments. So we ventured out – looking for a relatively inexpensive late lunch.

The restaurant was completely empty – but given the crazy hour we were there – I can’t say I was completely surprised. We were greeted with a smile – and presented with what I suspect was the dinner menu. Oh well – we were late.

Rather than order 2 differnt maki’s – we ordered a combo platter to share. This was probably a mistake. I suspect that the maki’s were pre-made left overs from lunch time. My fault – I know to avoid that beginners mistake, but I was too tired to even fuss.

The good news – service was very nice and the miso soup was delicous. The bad news – the restaurant is cold and forbidding – too bad they haven’t thought of some way to make it feel more welcoming. And the best that can be said about our Combo Platter is that it was acceptable.

I might give them another try anyway – judging a restaurant on off hours is a bit tough, even for me.

A C – with hopes of doing better next time.