Home to the state’s highest peak of Mount Mansfield, Stowe, Vermont is best known for its skiing. It is so much a ski destination, in fact, that the tiny town is referred to as both the Ski Capital of the East and the Swiss Alps of the East. When snow is on the ground, you can fill your days with endless outdoor activity: not just alpine skiing, but traversing cross-country trails, skating at an outdoor ice rink, ice fishing on frozen ponds, dog sledding or “fat biking”—which, despite what SoulCycle might have you believe, is mountain biking on bikes with wider tires made for snow and ice. It’s easy to have a healthy, exercise-heavy vacation in Stowe, especially in January, when resolutions are new and, in the quiet after the holidays, your time is finally your own again.
Peak-of-the-season flavor isn’t a one-of-a-kind experience in Virginia’s Shenandoah County, it’s a way of life. Here, farm-to-table isn’t an elite experience reserved for white tablecloth dining. You can simply rip open a bag of potato chips. Farms dot the Shenandoah County landscape, a breathtakingly beautiful area in northwestern Virginia nestled between the Allegheny and Massanutten Mountains and lapped by the North Fork of the Shenandoah River. Rich soil, fresh air, clean water and farmers’ skillful traditions help make this the state’s fifth most productive agricultural region.
Food authorities rank Chicago restaurants atop the nation’s best: Bon Appetit named Chicago the “2017 Restaurant City of the Year.” The James Beard Foundation moved its awards event from New York to Chicago. Zagat and Conde Nast echoed the accolades in 2018.
Nestled in the state of Idaho is a resort famed equally for its winter skiing as its summer golfing. Since it was built in 1936, Sun Valley Resort offers a multi generational travel destination no matter the season. Popular with Hollywood celebrities and sports stars, locals and visitors, this is America’s original destination ski resort.
If it’s possible to “lionize” a pig, no American cuisine does more to elevate the humble animal than Southern cooking. From North Carolina whole hog to Memphis ribs to St. Louis pork steak, Southerners love some swine!
My adopted home state of North Carolina is a food lover’s fantasy land. There’s more outstanding barbecue than you can shake a rib at. Everywhere along the coast the fish shacks, oyster bars and sushi restaurants make the most of what’s caught on the line and in the net. Forests and fields deliver surprises to chefs from the mountains to the sea. And the beer scene—we can’t even go there right now, but do yourself a favor and come thirsty. Most of all, come hungry. Come to Wilmington hungry. This city in the southeastern corner of the state has a food scene that’s got its fair share of names and accolades, from James Beard Award nominees and winners to a AAA Four Diamond restaurant to faces you might recognize from Bravo’s Top Chef and a raft of up and comers. Break out the bib, put on your loosest pants, and get ready to feast. These are the eight must-eat restaurants in Wilmington (right now).
Since beginning in 2012, the World Food Championships has established itself as the premier event in the world of “Food Sport.” Contestants compete in regional events to advance to championships for the chance to share in hundreds of thousands of dollars in prize money. Unlike other food competitions which specialize in specific food types like barbecue, chili or burgers, the WFC holds simultaneous competitions in ten categories to name division winners that then face off at “The Final Table” to be judged by a panel of culinary celebrities that select a final World Food Champion.
“Have a rice day” is the greeting you'll get in Crowley, Louisiana. Rice has reigned in this self-proclaimed “rice capital” of the Cajun prairie since the late 1800s. Crowley's rice history goes back to the completion of the railroad, which led to the sale of abundant prairie land rich for growing the crop. Several advances in equipment, technology and plant varieties all led to the grain prospering in this region of Southwest Louisiana. Rice fields still dot the landscape today.
The phrase “As American as apple pie” has a lot of meaning to the farmers of Central Pennsylvania. Each fall, local orchards burst with apples of many colors and tastes: 72 different apple varieties grow in this region! One family has made the art of growing and selling apples their business for the last 63 years. On a 500-acre farm in Biglerville, Penn., four generations of the Hollabaugh family tend the land to produce enough apples for their own market as well as for wholesalers who buy half of the 100,000 bushels they harvest each year.
In Morro Bay, California, an ancient 581-foot-tall volcanic plug known as Morro Rock presides over the quaint fishing village. The odd-looking landmark is the essence of this place. The rock's very existence speaks to these exceptionally nutrient-rich estuary waters where a longtime small fleet commercial fishing industry retains its sturdy sea legs.