Manchester, VT is home to many shops and restaurants in a classic New England setting.
Photo Credit : Aimee Tucker
Beautiful countryside historic sites like Hildene, terrific outlet shopping, and a direct route to New York City all combine to make the Vermont town of Manchester a popular destination. And thanks in large part to its Big Apple connections, more than a few talented chefs have put down roots here, creating a vibrant restaurant scene. Planning a visit to this Green Mountain burg of about 4,500? Whether you’re on the hunt for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, here are a few Manchester, VT, restaurants worth seeking out.
As its name suggests, Up for Breakfast has been squarely focused on the first meal of the day since it opened in 1989. This hole-in-the-wall impresses with sourdough pancakes, real maple syrup, and locally sourced sausage and bacon. Whether you looking for vegan options or in the mood for a old-fashioned classic like red flannel hash, Up for Breakfast will get the day started right.
For an international twist, Ponce Bistro blends the flavors of Europe and the Caribbean into its breakfast lineup while still paying homage to New England staples. Any seat here is a comfortable one, but on a beautiful morning it’s hard to top kicking back on the patio with some fresh crepes.
Whether you’re grabbing takeout from Zoey’s Deli or dining in at Zoey’s Double Hex Restaurant, these two Depot Street landmarks pride themselves on delivering creative and delicious lunches that won’t break the bank — from fresh-baked bread and homemade potato chips to signature burgers and a seafood steam pot.
Since it shares space with Northshire Bookstore, one of our picks for Best Independent Bookstores in New England, The Next Chapter Cafe is the kind of place where you’ll want to linger after lunch. Soups, salads, and specialty wraps and sandwiches are the primary fare, but save room for some goodies from the bakery, too.
A taco and burrito bar reimagined by a New England Culinary Institute alum, Cilantro is a go-to for Mexican-inspired cuisine in Manchester. The meat and produce are local, the presentation and flavors are clean and simple, and the most expensive item on the menu is less than $10.
This 2014 Yankee Editors’ Pick for “Best Eclectic Dining” is tiny, with just six tables and five spots at the bar — but it’s worth squeezing in for a taste of the chef’s unique fusion of German, Puerto Rican, and New American cuisines.
For more than two centuries, the area’s dignitaries have congregated here to eat and drink. The antique furnishings, uneven floors, and crooked doorways are reminders of yesterday, but the menu — heavy on steak, seafood, pasta, and regional favorites — remains contemporary and delicious.
An extensive selection of wine and craft beer makes for interesting pairings with the ever-changing lineup of bistro dishes. The slow-roasted prime rib is only on the menu a few nights each week, but it’s worth going out of your way for. No matter what you order, though, save room for dessert from the Vermont Baking Company.
Rooted in the traditions of American craft cooking, the Copper Grouse offers elevated comfort food, from tea-crusted pork tenderloin to roasted root vegetable curry. We recommend snacking on the popcorn with truffle butter, bacon powder, and smoked sea salt while you choose your entrée.
Where are some of your favorite Manchester, VT, restaurants?
This post was first published in 2017 and has been updated.