A Little Bit of BBQ
From modern smokers to age old fire pits, Vermont is turning locally raised beef, chicken and pork into a delicacy.
In recent years Vermont has experienced an explosion of world class barbecue restaurants that are gaining attention throughout New England. While there have been many new restaurants that have joined the scene, the tried and true favorites continue to push the boundaries of barbecue innovation. From modern smokers to age old fire pits, Vermont is turning locally raised beef, chicken and pork into a delicacy.
Barbecue connoisseurs that visit Vermont are also discovering a growing number of summer barbecue festivals across the state. You don’t have to be an expert in barbecue etiquette or practice to enjoy these hot events, just grab a napkin and your appetite. Whether you are in the mood for a cold beer and some smoked pulled pork with a friend or are interested in something a little on the spicier side, you’re in luck. Below is just a small sampling of some of the exciting barbecue restaurants around the state that will satisfy your smoky craving.
Curtis’ All American Barbecue, Putney
There is no Vermont barbecue tale that can begin without mention of Curtis’ All American Barbecue in Putney, Vermont. Located at exit 4 off Interstate 91, this has been a pit stop for hungry travelers for the last 45 years. Curtis Tuff fires up his barbecue pit in April and doesn’t stop until late fall each year. This roadside southern barbecue gem is a must stop for those who not only want to enjoy something special, but also want to hear a story or two from the legend himself, Curtis Tuff.
Big Fatty’s BBQ, White River Junction
On your next adventure through Vermont’s Upper Valley be sure to swing into Big Fatty’s barbecue to put your hunger to rest. While most consider Big Fatty’s one of the best local pit stops for pulled pork and smoked chicken, they are also known for their fantastic salad bar. Big Fatty’s was named one of the Upper Valley’s top kid friendly restaurants so you can be sure there is something to please the entire family.
The Back Behind, Killington
Located in one of Vermont’s most popular ski towns, visiting the Back Behind Hickory Smokehouse is truly a one of a kind experience. This hard to miss authentic smokehouse can easily be identified by the pink pig-shaped smoker that gently wafts sweet hickory clouds onto Route 100 and the dining caboose. This is the place to be if you’re looking for a good time, a cold local beer, and the best dry rubbed chicken wings around. Every menu item is created from scratch, be it soups, breads, desserts, sauces or entrees. At The Back Behind you will have a truly unique experience.
Localfolk Smokehouse, Warren
Just minutes from Sugarbush Resort and Mad River Glen, Localfolk is every outdoor enthusiast’s barbecue oasis with a view. Its name fits the personality nicely because the restaurant is a local favorite on any given night. Here you will find a mouthwatering menu, a fantastic selection of 25+ beers on tap, and live music that will get your bones moving most weekends. Late nighters need not worry as the smokehouse is open until midnight.
Prohibition Pig, Waterbury
At the Prohibition Pig you will find much more than their savory BBQ. Located in downtown Waterbury, Vermont, “the Pig” also brews some tasty craft beer to compliment just about anything on their menu, but especially their chopped pork BBQ sandwich or sliced beef brisket. Along with an extensive list of barbecue items, the Prohibition Pig is known for their local grassfed all beef burgers. No visit is complete without an order of their special duck fat fries.
Sunset Grille & Tap Room, Stowe
If holding a cold beer in one hand and a rack of baby back ribs in the other while watching sports is your thing, then the Sunset Grille & Tap Room is your place. After 27 years of operation, the Sunset Grille has become a local landmark with its family friendly outdoor seating and backyard. Their smoked meats, beer menu and plethora of televisions broadcasting every sport you could possibly imagine give the Sunset a warm and inclusive feel. If you are a member of the late night crowd it is important to know that the kitchen here stays open until midnight.
Bluebird Barbecue, Burlington
Located in vibrant and more urban city of Burlington, Vermont, sum up the Blue Bird BBQ experience in these words: “I’ll have another!” Bluebird’s owner and operator Sue Bette has travelled across the United States to refine her trade and bring home some of the best features of American barbecue. All of the meats served on the Bluebird’s menu are smoked on the premises in an impressive smokehouse. Along with a stellar barbecue menu that features items like “15 Hour Brisket, dry rubbed, Texas style, hand carved to order”, the Bluebird also boasts an extensive beer and cocktail list.
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