Monday, June 29, 2009

Happening at Claire's and around Hardwick

Summer Sundays bring three ways to have a good time at Claire’s! We’re open for our popular “Blunch” from 11 to 2. Come by after 2 and enjoy coffee and a sweet snack, or a glass of your favorite cook beverage from the bar. From 5-8, we’re open for dinner. Catch up with friends, relax over a good meal, watch a summer day roll by through our windows.

Local Food is Popping: Jalapeños from Pete’s Greens are coming in, and Steven is thrilled about a stuffing and batter to fry them into Poppers. Leeks are also on their way, and the tomatoes are particularly sweet and aromatic this year. Look for them with roasted chicken.

Thursday Music: We’re thrilled to welcome the Bottomshelf Bootleggers, who are inspired by Old Timey Americana, featuring washboard bass, mandolin, fiddle, dobro, and vocal harmonies. Come by to enjoy the music and maybe dance.

Local Events: Tuesday night, the Hardwick Area Transition Town committee is meeting at 7 pm at the Center for an Agricultural Economy. Learn more about Transition Towns at

Thursday night, Bike Hardwick from 7-8 pm. A leisurely bicycle ride starting at the Buffalo Mountain Coop open to all ages. Please register by contacting Perry Heller at 917-224-7216, Tom Brown at 802-472-5509, or email at

Open House at the Greensboro Free Library, Saturday at 10 am – 3 pm. Come see the renovated library, shop the Book Sale 10:00-2:00, also a Tee-Shirt Tye-dying for children at11:30, poetry reading with Galway Kinnell at 11:30, and a watercolor demonstration with Lynn Davidson at 1:00. The library will be dedicated at 2 pm.

Also on Saturday: The Fourth of July - Happy Independence Day!

Monday, June 22, 2009

What's Cooking at Claire's and around Hardwick

Local Food: Zucchini! Our secret source has early deliveries of one of summer’s most admired and easily overlooked vegetables. Come by for a taste.

Farmers Markets are held every Thursday in Greensboro 3-6; Friday in Hardwick 3-6; Saturday in Craftsbury 10-1 on the Common. Farm stands are open across the region, and Perennial Pleasures again offers afternoon tea.

New Sunday Hours: We’re now open Sundays for dinner from 5-8. We also offer our much appreciated “Blunch” from 11-2.

Local Fun: Enjoy Circus Smirkus Sunday in Greensboro at 1:00 or 6:00. Stop by the Galaxy Bookshop for tickets, and take a look at the Food Inc. book, based on the movie and featuring essays by Eric Schlosser, Michael Pollan, Marion Nestle, Joel Salatin, Gary Hirshberg, and others.

Linda Ramsdell from the Galaxy and Claire’s will be on VPR 12-1 Tuesday talking about summer reading.

Local Music: Welcome the Michele Fay Band on Thursday at 7:30, and enjoy their unique mix of traditional, swing, and bluegrass music, rich female harmonies, and original songs inspired by Vermont. You can learn more and listen at their website.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Say "American Cheeses"! Come by Tuesday evening to meet author and James Beard Foundation Inductee Clark Wolf, in celebration of his book American Cheeses. The reception includes a cheese tasting that Steven has prepared with some of the most intriguing selections juxtaposing Vermont producers with other Americans, and Clark will include anecdotes and insights from his book about the cheeses. At 7 pm, Clark will be at the Galaxy Bookshop to discuss his book in greater detail and sign copies. The cheese tasting at Claire’s is $10 at the door, and the talk at the Galaxy is free.

Watch for our cheese quiz today and tomorrow on twitter - - and find out about the tasting selection

Local Food:
Head up to the Rural Heritage Institute at Sterling College Tuesday-Thursday for Food, Farms, and Community: Rural American’s Local Food Renaissance. Participants include local and national leaders in the local food movement, with discussions, field trips, and workshops. Steven joins Eric Warnstedt from Hen of the Wood, Jeff Egan from the Bee’s Knees, and Elena Gustavson from Sterling for a chefs’ panel on local food Wednesday evening. The panel starts at 7:15, after the 6 pm local foods banquet in Simpson Hall. The talk is free, and the dinner is $30. For more information, visit the Sterling College website.

Music Thursday:
Local back porch music favorites Copper Kettle will join us this week, offering what they describe as an “almost all girl band with influences from Gillian Welch, The Biscuit Burners and others.”

For CSR holders, don’t forget to pick up your new cards – they start this month. And we’re now open on Tuesdays.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Farmer's Markets

Farmers Markets are open in Hardwick on Fridays after 3:00 pm just off Rt. 15, and Saturday morning after 10:00 in Craftsbury Common. Run by the market in Greensboro as well. Home baked food, breads, annuals and perennials, and of course vegetable starters. Among our favorites are the tomatoes from Louie at Surfing Veggie.

Get an early start on the garden this weekend!

Sterling College Invites Community to Rural Heritage “Foodie” Events

This just in from Sterling College. The conference includes a panel with Steven, Claire's chef, on Wednesday night, with details below

Sterling College’s 2nd Annual Rural Heritage Institute (RHI) entitled Food, Farms, and Community: Rural America’s Local Food Renaissance from June 16 to 18 will have a number of events open to the public.

The first evening the Institute will have a Farmers’ Roundtable introduced and moderated by Severine von Tscharner Fleming, Director of The Greenhorns, a group filming a documentary on young farmers and authors of a new guidebook for young farmers. The Farmers’ Roundtable will be a collection of small scale sustainable farmers talking about the new agricultural economy and will be held on June 16 at 7:15pm in Sterling’s Simpson Hall

Clark Wolf, restaurant consultant and author of American Cheeses: The Best Regional, Artisan, and Farmhouse Cheeses, Who Makes Them, and Where to Find Them will discuss connecting local farmers to restaurants on Wednesday, June 17th at 4:30pm at Sterling’s Simpson Hall. Clark has over 30 years of experience in the food industry and is founder and President of Clark Wolf Company, a New York-based food and restaurant consulting firm.

A local Foods Banquet with fare highlighting the diverse bounty of local farmers follows Clark’s talk at 6pm in Simpson Hall — with Clark moderating a Chefs’ Roundtable starting after dinner at 7:15pm. The Chefs from Claire’s restaurant in Hardwick, Bee’s Knees of Morrisville, Hen of the Woods of Waterbury, and Sterling College chef Elena Gustavson will discuss the farm to table initiative and the economic viability of restaurants incorporating local foods in their daily menus. This Foods Banquet will be in Simpson Hall and is open to the public with a $30 entry fee.

As a late night dessert the public is invited to an “Evening Musical Interlude” listening to the soulful tunes of May Fly — a duet of sweet harmony vocals and folk instrumentals influenced by southern Appalachian old-time, and new England blues, ballads and soul music. This outdoor concert will start at 8:30pm in the Merlin/Madison courtyard on the Sterling Campus.

The last day of the Institute, Thursday, June 18th invites the public to the closing keynote speaker Andrew Meyer, founder of The Center for an Agricultural Economy and owner of Vermont Soy and Vermont Natural Coatings in Simpson Hall at 3:30pm.

A reception for the Black and White photography of Karl Decker will follow at 4:30pm in the Brown Library and at 7:30pm in the Craftsbury Public Library there will be a lively discussion of Wendell Berry’s Mad Farmer Poems led by Julia Shipley of Sterling College.

All events are open to the public and free unless otherwise noted. Donations are always welcome and appreciated. If interested in registering for the three-day Rural Heritage Institute please contact Pavel Cenkl, 802-586-7711 ext.140 or visit

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Happening at Claire's and around Hardwick

Our Kitchen Bookshelf: Join Claire’s and the Galaxy Bookshop on June 16 to welcome James Beard Foundation inductee and author Clark Wolf to Hardwick, discussing his new work, American Cheeses. A reception with cheese tasting and insights will be held at Claire’s beginning at 6 pm. Steven is preparing a selection of unique artisan cheeses featured in Clark’s book. Cost is $10 per person, and reservations are encouraged, though ou can pay in cash or check at the door.

After the tasting, we will adjourn to the Galaxy Bookshop, where Clark will discuss and sign copes of his book starting at 7:00 pm. This portion of the event is free. Even if you choose not to attend the reception, you are welcome to join us for the book signing!

Call us at 472-7053 to make your reservation for the cheese tasting, or stop by the Galaxy Bookshop to check out Clark’s book.

Reminder: We’re open on Tuesdays again. Don’t forget as well to come by and pick up your new card if you’re a CSR holder.

Local Food: Cherry tomatoes are on the way. Expect the first sweet gifts of summer to arrive by the weekend. Steven is also looking forward to some hard-to-come-by strawberries, and is still celebrating the wonders of rhubarb.

This weekend, plant sales continue at Riverside and Hazendale farms. Stop by for starters as well as annuals and baskets at Hazendale. While you’re in the area, pay a visit to Perennial Pleasures in East Hardwick for flowering plants and herbs, and afternoon tea!

Also next week, Sterling College’s Rural Heritage Institute hosts Food, Farms, and Community: Rural America’s Local Food Renaissance June 16-18. The program includes discussions, field trips, and workshops, with participants and practitioners focusing on new developments in sustainable food systems, organic agriculture, and working communities. Steven joins a panel of local chefs on Wednesday. For more information, visit Sterling's website.

Music Thursday: Dave Keller is excited to return this week, and we’re pleased to have him. For more information about his “gritty,” “soulful,” “sweet,” and “intense” music, go to

Across the Fence: Keep up with local food news, events, recipes, and menu items by following our posts at

Monday, June 1, 2009

Happening at Claire's and Around Hardwick

Summer Hours: Starting this week, we’ll be open again every Tuesday after 2:30, serving dinner from 5-9. In the next few weeks, we’ll also add Sunday dinner hours, and until then, the Lakeview Inn is planning a special Sunday Supper on June 7. Find out more details at the Hardwick Area Chamber of Commerce Community Calendar.

New CSR Cards Have Arrived: Stop by and pick yours up today if you are a CSR holder. You’ll also have the opportunity to meet our new dining room manager, Veronica Medwid. Veronica is originally from upstate New York, but spent the last several years working in the world of restaurants and local food in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She’s thrilled to be closer to her family in Derby, and to be able to contribute to the agricultural economy in Hardwick and northeast Vermont.

Summer Cocktails: We’re also debuting our new cocktail menu, featuring a local twist on some classics, and special syrups made my our neighbor Linda Fox. Claire’s Cosmo or a Blueberry Mint Julep will satisfy any sweet tooth, and for just a little twist, you’ll find a Raspberry Lemon Drop or a Mint Basil Lemontini. For a dryer palate, try a Dark and Stormy or a classic Martini.

Local Art is Hopping: Come by for our new exhibit of works by artist David Smith, whose representational style concerns light and its “interplay with the world,” pushing boundaries through an alternative way of looking. David Smith’s paintings will be on view at Claire’s from June 2 until August 4, and you can meet David at our artist reception on Monday June 8 from 4:00 to 6:00.

June 7 marks the season’s first exhibit at White Water Gallery in East Hardwick, entitled “Shadow and Light,” and featuring the work of Carol Drury, Coleen Flanagan, and Nancy Schade. The gallery hosts an opening reception from 4-7. You can also catch “Peep Show,” a photo montage that documents the 60s rock concert scene.

Thank you to all our friends and supporters who stopped by for our first anniversary party. It was a joy to see all of you. If you couldn’t make it we look forward to seeing you again soon.