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Things to Do in Woodstock VT

posted Jul 7, 2010, 7:14 AM by Richard Lee   [ updated Feb 11, 2011, 9:09 PM ]
We love going to Woodstock VT - in fact, we've done long weekends up in that part of VT 3 times this year!  There are so many great restaurants, activities, and just great people in Woodstock.  Here are a few of our favorites:

Getting to / around Woodstock VT
By car, it takes about 2 1/2 hrs from Boston - mostly highway.

Where to Stay in Woodstock VT
Farmhouse Inn at Robinson Farm - Lisa & I spent NYE 2010 at the Farmhouse.  It's about 5 miles out of the Woodstock town square, but you pretty much drive everywhere in Woodstock so it's not a big deal.  Plus you get the benefit of checking out the amazing property that Barry, Torry & Hannah have!  We've stayed at many B&Bs throughout New England and this has to be one of our favorites! Barry, Torry & Hannah were amazing hosts - inviting us to family game night, offering tastes of locally-made sherries (the egg nog / maple sherry combo was amazing!), giving us tours of their barn & hen house (where they get eggs every morning), and letting us snowshoe on their unbelievable 17-acre property. We're already planning a visit in the summertime when they show project movies on their big red barn!

Lincoln Inn - we stayed at the Lincoln Inn over the 4th of July... it's a cute little B&B about 3-4 miles outside of Woodstock Green.  It also happens to have one of the higher-rated restaurants, Mangowood (see review below) there - so quite convenient!  Our main purpose for the weekend was to pick up our 1/4 cow from Cloudland Farm, but we never miss a chance to stay at a B&B and enjoy Woodstock!  The place is very intimate, cozy, rates were reasonable, has a cute babbling river in the yard, and serves some amazing breakfast (the stuffed french toast was my favorite).  

Where to Eat in Woodstock VT
Cloudland Farm - So, we first got introduced to Cloudland Farm via their beef - a group of friends bought a quarter share of a cow - and divvied up the meat.  It was delectable - somewhere between the price of beef at Shaw's & Whole Foods, but a big step up in quality.  Seriously, even the ground beef was amazing - I had friends seriously beg me to make more burgers for them!  Here's what 118lbs (otherwise known as 1/4 cow) looks like:

Anyway, while picking up our beef in July 2010, Cathy Emmons mentions that they're starting up Farmhouse Dinners later that fall - so we plan to try it out on our next visit to Woodstock which happened to be New Years Day 2011.  We were NOT disappointed.  The place is very rustic - it is a working farm, after all... and you sit family style with random folks.  We weren't really paired with "randoms" at our New Years' brunch - it turned out to be Bill Emmons (Cathy's husband and owner of the farm)  & his kids.  So, we may have been fortunate to have better service, but honestly the food is best described as "comfort food", but doesn't quite do it justice.   Our menu:

- Vermont blueberry-buttermilk scones & brioche rolls
- Caramelized onions, Cloudland ham & Grafton cheddar frittata
- VT blueberry pancakes with local maple syrup
- Spring brook cheese potato gratin
- Braised Cloudland pork belly with black currant sauce
- Roasted root vegetable  with leek hash
- Sparkling currant soup with champagne & cassis sorbet

Here's pics of the pork belly and blueberry pancakes... I'm hungry just looking at it again!

Everything was delectable, amazingly fresh, and the conversation with Bill & family was a perfect complement to the food... it was great to hear the story of how they've built the farm and where they get all the ingredients.

The price was high for family-style ($35 for brunch, $50 for dinner), but for the quantity and quality of food, it can't be beat.  We're definitely headed back to sample dinner next time we're in Woodstock!

Mangowood Restaurant (at Lincoln Inn) - so because we were staying upstairs and because Chef Tan gets great reviews on TripAdvisor, we ate at Mangowood for dinner.  Following the suggestions of TA folks, we got the fried fish, tofu fries, and chicken wings.  By the time we realized everything we ordered was fried, it was too late - but it was beautifully presented.  Personally, we enjoyed the tofu sticks the best.  We liked the meal, but it was a bit too heavy for our tastes.  We would go back there, but aren't in any rush.  Honestly, I preferred the brunch Chef Tan prepared for us - although I hear good things about the "Chef's Table" she offers where you eat in the kitchen with her.  Here's a pic of Lisa about to attack the Red Snapper!

What to Do in Woodstock VT
I guess it depends on whether you're there in the winter or summer, but we like outdoor activities - so in the summer we hike - like Mount Tom - it's a pretty small mountain, but there are some steep climbs - probably only 30-40 mins to the top - but some beautiful views from up there.

In the winter, we like to snowshoe, we hit either Billings Park or the trails behind Farmhouse Inn.  We also like to get a winter sleigh ride at the Billings Farm (it's free, with $10 admission, but you also get to check out the rest of the Farm museum grounds).

This isn't technically Woodstock, but Quechee is only about 10 minutes away and has some great things to do / see as well.  You gotta check out Simon Pearce - which has amazingly beautiful yet overpriced glassware - you can also see them create all the pottery / blow the glass right there - it's pretty amazing to see in person.  Eat lunch at the restaurant there too - it's pretty friggin' good and alot cheaper than the dinner there!  Also, for a once-in-a-lifetime experience, try to get a hot air balloon ride - they take off at dawn or dusk right next door to Simon Pearce - we did one with Balloons of Vermont for my birthday in Oct, so got to experience foliage from about 1000 ft above the earth.  Darrek and Lisa made sure everything was perfect - and would recommend this to anyone!

Watching a ballon get filled up is truly spectacular!

Stay away from the flame though!  That'll leave a mark... 
Once you're airborne, everything else melts away and you just stare at beauty.