It is true that we don’t travel as much as we did pre-children. (Yes, children, before you were born, your father and I gallivanted around the world, cash flowing through our hands like water. We wanted for nothing and the world was our oyster. That said, we love you very much and don’t mind at all putting that money that we were using to enrich our life experience into clothing and feeding you, to say nothing of providing orthodontia, summer camps, music lessons and sports activities…all as a precursor to the biggest expense of all, college…really, we don’t mind).
Now when we travel it is usually as a family which I love, and very occasionally, my husband and I go away together, alone, in as a couple. It is a bit odd at first, it is also a little window into the time when the kids will have grown up and left home, it is different but nice. We hang out, read, walk, or maybe jump in the car to explore a nearby town and all without explanation or coercion. Really, for those of you with young children, it can happen to you. This trip, was to Southern Vermont (it was on the way to pick up a child at camp), and stayed in at 40 Putney Road Inn (the street address is 172 Putney Road, I’ll let the owners explain that to you), and it is just a short walk into Brattleboro Center from this lovely and a short drive to the perfect (movie set perfect) town of Newfane, and behind the inn there are miles of trails. The rooms are lovely, luxurious and homey without being pretentious. The innkeepers are Amy and Tim, and their dedication to the place really shows. The Sun and Moon room was lovely and luxurious without being pretentious, nice touches included a seriously comfortable bed, a reading nook and things like chilled water (in a charming old fashioned glass bottle), and complimentary basket full of snacks that we snarfed almost immediately (although we did save the chips for our camper). We had a pre-dinner beer in the pub and chatted with Amy about running and inn. She made it sound effortless. What a perfect place to stay: comfortable with nice energy, and a great gourmet breakfast (included in the room rate). Amy will even share – she won a pancake contest with the following recipe. This is a fantastic getaway – definitely on our re-visit list.
Amy’s Perfect Amaretto Almond Pancake
Makes 8 – 4” pancakes
1 C – All purpose bleached flour (softer than unbleached flour)
2 t – Sugar
1⁄2 t – Salt
1⁄2 t – Baking Powder
3⁄4 c – Buttermilk
1⁄4 c – Milk
1 – Large Egg
2 T – Unsalted butter melted
1 t – Vanilla Extract
3⁄4 C – Sliced Almonds
1 T – Amaretto
1⁄4 t – Almond Extract
1⁄2 C – Vermont medium amber grade A maple syrup
1⁄4 C – Sliced almonds
Heat a large non-stick skillet or griddle to 375 degrees. Mix flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, sliced almonds and baking soda in a medium
bowl. Microwave buttermilk and milk in a bowl to get to room temperature. Whisk in egg, butter and vanilla. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients until just barely mixed to the point of no
lumps. Pour batter 1⁄4 cup at a time. Work in batches to avoid overcrowding. When pancakebottoms are golden brown and the tops start to bubble (2-3 minutes) flip the pancake and cook until golden brown on the remaining side. Combine Almond Extract and syrup and microwave for 45 seconds. Serve hot. Garnish pancakes with sliced almonds.
For more information on Forty Putney Road Bed and Breakfast, visit http://www.fortyputneyroad.com or call (800) 941-2413 or like them on Facebook (special deals show up here)
That night, we went to a fabulous dinner at T.J. Buckley’s in Brattleboro, go now and order the scallops – you will not be sorry.
The dining room hold about 10-12 seats and the kitchen is open to it so you are treated to a show as well as fantastic food. The restaurant is in a converted train dining car and seats about 18 people. It is softly-lit, romantic and the view of the kitchen makes it feel wonderfully engaging and Chef Michael Fuller is a dream to watch. Everything is quiet, understated and fantastic.
T. J. Buckley’s Sample Menu
Country-Style Paté –Duck liver, veal, pork
sliced fruit, whole grain mustard, homemade fruit chutney
Crab Cake — Citrus, cilantro, garlic aioli
Smoked Trout Tartlet — chevre, dollop of crème fraiche, trout roe
Parmesan Cheese Tart –Swiss chard, golden raisins, pine nuts served with membrillo
Beef Tenderloin, Braised oxtail*, Black Trumpet Mushroom — Mashed German Butterball potatoes with roasted garlic, Grilled green beans and gilfeather turnip*
Rabbit Loin* Wrapped in Jamon Serrano —
Rabbit Leg* Stuffed with swiss chard and double-smoked bacon* — Maine heirloom beans, winter vegetables, poached Bosc pear
Diver Scallops & Crispy Pork Belly* Au jus with carrot oil and aged balsamic syrup Coarse grit polenta cakes sautéed winter greens, fennel, savoy cabbage, black trumpet mushroom
Wild King Salmon Seared and Steamed Lobster Stock, Parsley Oil Local Brown Rice & Wild Minnoman Rice RisottoPureed Kabocha Squash, Frizzled Leek, Kale
includes salad and Orchard Hill bread
Local, Seasonal Vegetables from Local Farms
Vegetarian and Vegan Options Always Available
Excellent Wine and Beer Selection