Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Tuesday, August 21—Day 21

A short order revolution. . .

That's what it says above the counter at The Farmer's Diner in Queechee, Vermont, which is where I had lunch today. It is a real live diner—it's even in an old railcar, see?

Still not convinced? Here's the inside:

What's so revolutionary about a diner? This one happens to source all of its bulk ingredients (meat, dairy, produce in season, and baked goods) from within a 60 mile radius. That's big. They had to make a lot of special arrangements to get this to work, but it's working. They are putting finishing touches on a second location.

As I've noted elsewhere, I am not so much a fancy-food kind of guy. So a place that dishes up diner classics done very well that are also local to their area is perfect for me.

You have to love a place that that has Wendell Berry's The Mad Farmer Liberation Front reprinted on the front of the menu!

The food? I'm pleased to say that it is everything you would hope for in diner food: quality and taste were great and portions were generous but not insane. Here is what I ate:

That's half of a bacon cheesburger and half of a pulled pork sandwich, with fries on the side. When you can't decide what to eat, you go halfsies with your dining companion (thanks, Mom). Not shown is the milkshake that came a bit later.

Here is how this stacks up relative to our dietary guidelines: All the meat and dairy are fully compliant. The bun (which was one of the best sandwich buns I've ever had) was baked locally using some imported ingredients. The fries were from local potatoes, and the shake was made from local milk and cream but contained some non-local ingredients (sugar and—gasp—chocolate. Really, what would you have done?). The garnish is local, but we forgot to ask about the pickle.

The pulled pork rocked: succulent and tender, it just melted in your mouth. The burger was also first class—really as good as you can do without going to open-flame grilling (it's a diner, so that means it is constitutionally required to cook burgers on a flat-top grill). 100% grassfed beef, of course.

In the entryway they have a map that identifies where it all comes from, and the back of the menu proudly identifies their key suppliers:

They didn't have a T-shirt to buy, but we did get the bumper sticker:

'Nuff said!

Not much to report from the WI front. Food is no longer utmost in our minds since Scott left us with plenty of bread and sifted flour. Breakfast was peanut butter toast and cider. Lunch was tortillas, eggs and toppings for Jen, hot dog and carrots for Evie, blueberries for both.

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