Simon Pearce, Quechee, Vermont
At the end of a wonderful Vermont retreat weekend at the Good Commons Inn in Plymouth,Vermont, a few friends decided to treat ourselves to dinner out. So we head off, past the adorable town of Woodstock,
drive over the breathtaking Quechee Gorge,
as we continue along, surprise, we drive past a hot air balloon festival,
and finally we arrive at our destination, a beautifully restored 19th-century mill which literally sits on top of a waterfall.
Seriously? …a road trip in Vermont requires some serious use of adjectives.
Upon entering the mill we are greeted with a expansive retail shop, selling all the famous Simon Pearce glass and pottery. Downstairs is the studio where you can watch the glassblowing taking place.
I wandered out the back door where I was standing on a platform basically on top of the falls of the Ottaquechee River. Here you can view the Quechee covered wooden bridge which was still hanging in there despite being damaged during hurricane Irene.
After my friends made a few purchases we headed to the restaurant for dinner. The atmosphere is comfortable and not at all stuffy. The decor is exposed brick, pine floorboards, with comfortable wooden tables and chairs. All windows face the scenic river, the falls and the covered bridge so try to get a window seat. We didn’t get one but all the seats were fine.
Sadly, I wasn’t actually feeling all that well when we arrived to dinner. Perhaps it is my affinity for all things Irish but the moment we sat down and were given warm Ballymaloe Brown Bread with soft butter, miraculously I began to feel so much better. Our truly excellent server explained to us that the bread was the recipe of Simon’s mother, Lucy, from Shanagarry, Ireland.
My recovery continued as our server poured our wine into the beautiful hand blown glasses. Each type of glass given the name of a Vermont town, like Essex, Woodstock and Barre.
Then dinner was served on Simon Pearce pottery. The food was excellent and presented perfectly. Try the Horseradish Crusted Blue Cod with crispy leeks, herb mashed potatoes, balsamic shallot reduction. You will not be disappointed. Happily, by the time the meal was over I had a completely recovered!
Simon Pearce is one of those perfectly conceived and well executed businesses that I am so happy to have gone out of my way to get to.
I will work on getting that brown bread recipe for a future post!