Traveling West on Route 89 during snowy February ’04 New England excursion, stayed two nights in renowned bohemian haunt, Burlington. First stop was VERMONT PUB AND BREWERY, a large edifice with redeeming values I appreciated more the second time around five years hence.
As the second oldest brewpub on the East Coast (opened 1988), Vermont Pub spreads a large dining space behind windowed porch bar area. Spacious downtown eatery served good American cuisine. Ate hearty Angus Brewburger while tapping into now-deceased seasoned brewer Greg Noonan’s smooth libations.
Tried dry wheat-husked Ethan Allen Lager, sour malt-serenaded Burly Irish Ale, nut-soft Dogbite Bitter ESB, bitterly spice-hopped Bombay Grab IPA, hickory-smoked coffee-roasted Vermont Smoked Porter, silken cappuccino-sweet coffee-dried maple-sapped wood-smoked cola-nutty Handsome Mick’s Irish Stout, and mocha serenity Black Sea Imperial Stout.
In January ’09, discovered several lighter-bodied experimental brews such as chipotle-jalapenos-smoked sandalwood-burnt sage-oiled black-peppered Ambergris No. 1 Weiss and peculiar herbaceous honey-suckled Absinthe (gathering peppermint, absinthium, lemon balm, chamomile, licorice, and ginger illusions). Soft oak-aged raspberry-parched cranberry-soured watermelon-tinged Forbidden Fruit Framboise topped diacetyl chocolate malt-lagered fig-date-soured washout Brewmasters Cup Munich Dunkel, weirdly raw-grained lemon-tart bark-dried green tea-embittered Canadian-styled Cream Ale, and lemony green apple-soured banana-blanched limestone-grouted Beetlejuice (Bavarian Weizen).
Within walking distance, Pearl Street Beverage had excellent bottled selection where I purchased Trout River, Rock Art, and Berkshire brews.
The Pub at Ken’s Pizza had local fave, Switchback Ale, flaunting spritzy hop spice, sweet malt bed, dry orange rind midst, and strawberry-peach trace. Switchback has since gained Northeast notoriety with many out of state pubs.