5 p.m. | Drinks at Foam Brewers
Built by longtime Burlington brewmasters with the help of local artisans, this brewpub – punctuated by a long, winding stone bar flecked with stones collected from Lake Champlain – pours some of the city’s best and most imaginative suds, and slices up fresh charcuterie to kick off the weekend.
7 p.m. | Dinner at Hen of the Wood
This award-winning restaurant is named for the mushroom that tops its signature toast. Make a reservation as soon as you can, and eat whatever Chef Eric Warnstedt might suggest for the day; he’s the local savant of all things savory.
9:30 p.m. | Catch a Show at Vermont Comedy Club
Husband-and-wife team of Nathan Hartswick and Natalie Miller opened this space in 2015 in an old armory building on Main Street, and welcome funny acts from near and far almost nightly.
8 a.m. | Breakfast at Sneakers
Since 1980, this bistro has been a staple of Winooski, a Brooklyn-esque small city that sits next to Burlington. The all-day breakfast and brunch features signature dishes, like Kahlua-batter-dipped French toast, breakfast sandwiches with homemade turkey sausage, and, of course, bottomless hot coffee.
10 a.m. | Farms and Fine Art in Shelburne
Heading south on Route 7, your first stop is Shelburne Farms, the 1,400-acre working farm built by Dr. William Seward and Lila Vanderbilt Webb in 1886. Next up is Shelburne Museum, which showcases more than 150,000 pieces of American art in 39 buildings, including a lighthouse and the Ticonderoga steamboat. Pick up a picnic lunch at nearby Harrington’s or at Dakin Farm, and hike two miles up Mount Philo for lunch beside lovely views of Lake Champlain and beyond.
3 p.m. | Stroll Church Street
Back in Burlington, the pedestrian-only Church Street Marketplace is lined with dozens of boutiques and vintage stores for souvenir shopping. We suggest Barge Canal Market for mid-century modern home goods or Vintage Inspired, a multi-dealer shop that overflows with vintage and curious goods in an old brick warehouse.
5 p.m. | Drinks at Monarch & Milkweed
It sounds like a children’s bookstore, but this downtown Burlington space is actually one of the top hangouts for grown-up drinks, such as the Milk Punch and the Negroni Popper. Owner Andrew LeSturgeon brings New York City experience here; be sure to try the brown-butter popcorn.
7 p.m. | Dinner at American Flatbread
Next door to Monarch & Milkweed, this pizzeria joint is unlike any other in the US. Organic, Vermont-grown ingredients top thin, crispy crusts with no red sauce in sight. There are also red-checked tablecloths, games, and local microbrews, plus occasional live music.
9 a.m. | Brunch at Penny Cluse
When Vice President Joe Biden visited Burlington, he tucked into blueberry pancakes at this homey brunch café and is hardly the only celeb to discover the appeal. The Bucket-o-Spuds will satisfy the hungriest of home-fry lovers, while the Zydeco Breakfast brings southern warmth to a northern climate.
11 a.m. | Ride the Burlington Bike Path
Stretching some eight miles along the Lake Champlain waterfront and connecting to additional paved paths in Colchester, the Burlington Bike Path is the heart of the city’s outdoor scene from May through October. Rent bikes from Local Motion, and reward yourself with a creemee (the Vermont term for soft serve ice cream) from Burlington Bay Café before heading out of town.