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.
Buffalo, New York is nestled on the shores of Lake Erie midway between Jamestown and Niagara Falls. The state’s second largest metropolitan area (after New York City) is home to hearty folks who endure notoriously bad weather, yearn for a championship from the NFL’s Bills and NHL’s Sabres, and know how to eat! Locals take pride in homegrown, original foods, some of which—like wings(not Buffalo wings, not chicken wings, just wings)—have become synonymous with the area. For 40 years, I lived a few miles south of Buffalo. Now that I’m living in South Carolina I don’t miss the winters a bit, but I do miss feasting on Buffalo food traditions. So I make an annual pilgrimage north to savor favorites at local restaurants and tote home a carload of staples. Here’s a list of the foods that I think sets Western New York apart. Shuffle off to Buffalo, seek, sample, savor and let the feast begin!
Once you pass underneath the gateway arch at the foot of Federal Hill, you’re in Providence, Rhode Island’s Little Italy. Classic red sauce restaurants—some of which date back a century—line Atwells Avenue. In between, there are Italian specialty shops where dried sausages hang in the windows while songs by old crooners are piped out into the street. There are bocce courts, and an Italianate fountain in DePasquale Square with twinkling lights hanging overhead. This time of year, there’s also a huge Christmas tree illuminating the piazza. If you can catch it during one of the season’s first snowfalls, you’re not likely to find a more magical scene.
All of us here at Foodie Travel USA wish everyone a very happy Thanksgiving. We’d like to take this opportunity to say a simple “thank you” for reading our posts. We hope you enjoy reading it as much as we enjoy putting it together and digging into flavors from coast to coast. While gearing up for the holiday, some of us stopped to reflect and share memories, insights and even some home-cooking tips from past Thanksgivings.
Is it a cookie? A cake? A pie? A dessert sandwich? When it comes to the Maine whoopie pie, the answer is all of the above. In its most basic form, a whoopie pie is made up of two dark chocolate cake discs about the size of a hamburger bun with a layer of sweet, creamy, thick white frosting sandwiched between them. While the origins of the treat are up for debate, Maine claims to be the birthplace of its invention: The first whoopie pies came out of a Lewiston, Maine bakery in 1925.
I’ve been happily munching on Pennsylvania Dutch food for almost 50 years. My parents, and their parents before them, and on back, were born in central Pennsylvania, more or less ground zero for the cuisine. But trying to classify it isn’t easy, even for me. To begin with, the name is a misnomer: Pennsylvania Dutch fare has spread to Maryland, Virginia, Ohio and the Midwest. Tomake it more confusing, it’s not Dutch, either. The term evolved from the word “Deutsch,” the German word for German, which referred to German-speaking settlers who immigrated long ago to the Keystone State.
Dressing or stuffing? Pumpkin or sweet potato pie? Brine, baste, roast or deep-fry the bird? What you consider to be the “correct” answer to these and other culinary questions about our nation’s annual Thanksgiving feast depend largely on where you live.
“I'll have what she's having” is arguably one of the most recognized lines in movie history. Rob Reiner and Nora Ephron's 1989 “When Harry Met Sally” humorously explores the difference between men and woman and whether or not they can really be friends. Sally, played by Meg Ryan, is depicted as a picky eater who wants things the way she wants them. She's eating a deli sandwich in the classic scene, proof that movie food scenes layer theme into cuisine.
If you ask ten New Yorkers where to find the best New York-style pizza, you’re likely to get ten different answers. In the city that boasts the first pizzeria in America (that’s Lombardi’s, for the uninitiated) pizza isn’t a food: It’s a genre, a dietary staple, and a hot button question. Some call the buzzy DiFara’s the last word in pies, others swear by L&B Spumoni Gardens for its slices. Still others come to fisticuffs over the superiority of Joe & Pat’s over John’s of Bleeker Street.
Ahhh, the dog days of summer in Maine, when truly, the weather cooperates for dogs and their humans to dine al fresco at some of the state’s best restaurants. While state law does prohibit canines other than registered service animals from indoor table service, many eateries do open their patio seating areas to man’s best friend.