We visited Vermont for my 40th birthday. Burlington is a wonderful town, and the local beer is pretty amazing, too.

The Alchemist

The first destination, before even heading to our AirBNB in Burlington, was heading east towards Stowe and The Alchemist. Real hopheads know why we wanted to start here, and the beer did not disappoint.

Here I am taking my first sip of Heady Topper. I can honestly say I’ve tasted nothing like it, before or since. (📸: JoAnne Damico)

The Author enjoying a sip of Heady Topper The Alchemist brewery

(Focal Banger might be better, though.)


The town itself is extremely cute. It has a part college town (Go Catamounts!), part Main Street, USA vibe that really works for me.

Here’s Church Street, the main drag, all lit up for Christmas. (📸: JoAnne Damico)

Chrurch Street in Burlington, VT

The Burlington Earth Clock, just a few miles south of downtown, is also quite a scene. (📸: JoAnne Damico)

The Burlington Earth Clock


We also took a quick day trip up to Montréal. It’s a bit over 2 hours from Burlington. We went on a Sunday, so there wasn’t a ton to see or do, but the view from Mont Royal alone was worth the trip. (📸: JoAnne Damico)

Looking south from Mont Royal

Additional Recommendations

  • Foam Brewers: Holy hell, these cats took the hazy/New England IPA genrea and ran with it. Some of the best beer I’ve ever had. Great location (right on the banks of Lake Champlain), great can art and releases mostly named after iconic indie rock bands and records. Really, everything about this place speaks to me.
  • Farmhouse Tap & Grill: We didn’t make it out to Hill Farmstead, but plenty of places in town had it on tap, including Farmhouse Tap & Grill. Really cool basement bar area, too.
  • Juniper Bar & Restaurant: Another Hill Farmstead honeypot. Way better/nicer than any hotel restaurant needs to be. Neat firepit area outside, which we were able to enjoy for roughly 5 minutes due to the cold.
  • Fiddlehead Brewing: Unfortunately their tasting room was under construction when we visited. Their standard, base Fiddlehead IPA is just so unbelieveably good.

I can’t wait to get back.