Stowe might just be one of our favorite ski towns. With no shortage of incredible breweries, skiing, and restaurants, this small town in the Green Mountains provides the perfect backdrop for a quick weekend getaway. Here are our team's recommendations for what to do, where to ski, and where to stay in Stowe this winter.
The drive up from Boston takes about 3.5 hours, so by the time you get to Stowe you'll be ready for a beer and a burger. Our favorite casual spot for Friday night dinner is Doc Ponds. Owned by Eric Warnstedt, the Chef behind fine dining favorite Hen of the Wood in nearby Waterbury and Burlington, Doc Ponds is Hen's younger (cooler) brother. Sink a Focal Banger from the Alchemist while the Beastie Boys plays over the record player. The menu is universally good, but we think the Bayley Blue Balls (friend Bayley Hazen blue cheese drizzled in honey), and the Doc Burger are the standouts here. Finish up and check into the brand new Stowe Mountain Lodge. In summer, we might recommend something with a bit more classic charm, but nothing beats ski in/ski out during the season.
Rise and shine! If the conditions are good, wake up early and catch the first gondola for a few warm up laps before hitting the infamous Front Four steeps of GOAT, National, Starr, and Liftline. By mid afternoon, you'll be ready to call it a day and hit apres. Forgot something in the city? First Chair Alpine Co., the outfitter at the base of Stowe Mountain Resort carries a full line of Alps & Meters gear, and would be happy to help.
Our pick for apres? The Matterhorn is a local institution. Grab a frosty beer and a some sushi to temper your ski-induced hunger before a full dinner later tonight at Plate. New to Main Street, Plate is owned by some California ex-pats, and they've managed to bring a little bit of California freshness to the Stowe dining scene. Reserve the four seat Chef's Table, and put yourself in their very capable hands. Feeling up for another round after dinner? Keep the party going at Tres Amigos, the new Mexican concept at the Rusty Nail. Live music is on pretty much every weekend, and word on the street is the Margaritas are tasty...
Choose your own adventure. Whether you're ski touring or brew touring, fuel up for the day at PK Coffee, a hip new spot utilizing Counter Culture beans on the Mountain Road.
Hit the slopes, or get in a quick hike before heading to the Alchemist's giant new production facility. You'll get your hands on Heady Topper and Focal Banger, sure, but if you're lucky you'll leave with a couple four packs that your beer nerd friends have never seen.
Whether you skied all afternoon, or spent the day drinking beer, apres should be at the new Trapp Family Bierhall. On the mountain with incredible views, this new facility is home to Trapp Family Brewery, one of our favorites for Austrian style lagers and more. Take a stroll around the property while you're there, the Von Trapp family (of Sound of Music fame) has brought a little piece of Austria to Stowe.
Stock up on road snacks (and their delicious fresh bread) at the Harvest Market on the Mountain Rd. This small gourmet grocery, owned by Donna Carpenter of Burton fame, has a great selection of VT products and deli items. Grab a few things to simply heat up in the oven once you're back to the city, and reflect fondly on your Stowe weekend over a delicious dinner.