Experience The Gastronomic Adventures Of Stowe, Vermont

You expect great skiing in the winter and hiking in the summer in Stowe, Vermont. But the surprise is that tiny Stowe has big city cuisine. Despite being home to little more than 4,000 people, Stowe has a thriving culinary scene.

But that's just the beginning of the good news for foodies. You'll find, sushi, Thai, Italian, wood-fired, Mexican, farm-to-table, beer-centric, and Austrian-style cuisine and much in between. Be ready for a gastronomic adventure. 

Take for example Picnic Social, located in the Field Guide hotel. Try the smoked trout toast, with capers, pickled mushroom, dill aïoli and fresh herbs, or perhaps the creamy polenta, with Parmesan, crispy egg, and wild mushroom. You can't go wrong with the pork belly toast, with avocado, black garlic, kimchi, and ranch aïoli. Each item on the menu is more decadent than the last. Try the signature cocktail, Pickwick Social, with Barr Hill gin, Aperol, egg white, strawberry simple syrup, and lemon, or wash down the good eats with local beers like Switchback or Zero Gravity.

No visit to Stowe is complete without a stop at Doc Ponds. If you're the mood for just snacks, load up on the Bayley Blue Balls, Vermont Cheddar fritters with pickled jalapeños, or a salted caramel milkshake. Hungrier? Fill up on the jerk pork chop with black beans and cabbage or the "Brisket Bomb #2" with house kraut and pimento fondue on a bulky roll.

Stowe is very much a beer town. If you have limited time, make sure to take the tours at the Alchemist Brewery and, especially if you're a The Sound of Music fan, Von Trapp Brewing. The Bierhall at the Trapp Family Lodge is the place for Austrian delights. Try the chicken schnitzel with apple kraut, braised red cabbage, arugula, lingonberry vinaigrette, and von Trapp farm fried egg,  or the grilled bratwurst and sides like turnip slaw, Austrian potato salad, and spätzle.

Work off all that great food, skiing, snowboarding (or in warmer seasons, golfing, mountain biking, hiking, fishing, and boating) by browsing the boutiques, consignment shops, and art galleries for one-of-a-kind items. You can also take a gondola ride (available every day, year round) almost all the way to the peak of Vermont's highest mountain and soak up the stunning vistas.

Make sure to take a bit of Stowe home with you, as well. Stowe Public House offers Vermont's best craft beer, wine, and hard ciders. You can also get cured meats, Vermont cheeses, crackers, local honey, condiments, and preserves from local artisans.