Travel | Burlington, VT: Eats, Sights, + Stay

Monday, May 28, 2018

"I will not play at tug o' war. I'd rather play at hug o' war, where everyone hugs instead of tugs, where everyone giggles and rolls on the rug, where everyone kisses, and everyone grins, and everyone cuddles, and everyone wins."- Shel Silverstein

New England is so close to Pennsylvania, yet so far away. It is definitely an area I wish to explore as much as possible and take every opportunity to visit. Luckily, such an opportunity recently presented itself! My best friend, Lora, graduated from University of Vermont and I was lucky enough to spend graduation weekend with her and her family. Although a short trip in which in mostly rained, we were able to experience Vermont's spring beauty and eat food from two awesome vegan/vegetarian restaurants.


Pingala Cafe | Pingala Cafe is a food truck-inspired vegan cafe. Lora's brother, who is also vegan, has gotten takeout from this restaurant on several occasions and it was the perfect option for us since we had to coordinate takeout for 12 people. I decided to order two small dishes and one large dish.

The first item I ate were the fresh rolls, which are summer rolls with rice noodles, pickled vegetables, mixed greens and a peanut dipping sauce. They were incredible. The dish came with two rolls which were pretty large and substantial for an appetizer and, in my perfect world, every meal would include peanut sauce.

My plan was to eat the Buddha-ful Bowl for my main course and then the Broccoli Bites if I was still hungry, or save it for the seven hour car ride the next day. However, I ended up being very grateful for the Broccoli Bites because I could not stomach the Buddha-ful Bowl. The description sounded great: Coconut brown rice with steamed kale, broccoli, roasted sweet potato puree, braised tempeh, ginger-pickled vegetables, sunflower seed crunch, topped with peanut sauce. I do not know what I found so repulsive about it, but I could barely eat anything other than the vegetables at the top. I honestly cannot remember ever not being able to eat a meal at a restaurant before, so this was a new experience for me.  Luckily, Lora's brother was up for the challenge of eating the rest and he enjoyed it.

The Broccoli Bites were really delicious, as well. I didn't taste much peanut sauce, but I enjoyed the simplicity of the meal and the pickled vegetables at the top.

I definitely want to revisit Pingala Cafe since the majority of the menu is very appealing to me. I'm slightly bummed I chose the Buddha-ful Bowl over the Kale Salad, but now I know for next time.


Revolution Kitchen | I had found this vegetarian restaurant during one of my epic Yelp searches and was extremely excited to check it out. Although Lora's brother was unable to join us (he had not yet arrived in town), we dined with her father and step-mother on Friday night. The restaurant itself is pretty small and narrow with the bar and kitchen in the front (you can see the food being prepared) and seating in the back. The walls are decorated with primitive/finger paintings and Buddha-inspired art. As for the food, I am not exaggerating when I say this was one of the most delicious meals I have ever experienced. We all loved our meals.

For an appetizer, I ordered the Vietnamese Salad Rolls, which contained rice noodles, mango, lettuce, and herbs and had a peanut dipping sauce. This dish was incredible. The rolls were light but substantial and absolutely delicious. Also, it came with peanut sauce which took my tastebuds to the next level.

My main course was the Revolution Tacos which had grilled sweet potato, oyster mushrooms, maple chipotle slaw, avocado, and salsa, and was served with cuban black beans and rice. The flavors and textures merged together in such a way I have never experienced before. I wanted to savor every bite but had to control myself from not eating the tacos in three bites. I will crave them for the rest of my life. Revolution Kitchen's Revolution Tacos are the equivalent to Sushi Samba's sushi. Life changing.

We dined at Revolution Kitchen on Friday night and had originally planned on getting takeout from there on Saturday, too. However, due to graduation weekend, they didn't have the capacity to also make takeout orders. If we did get takeout, I would have ordered the exact same thing.



Lake Champlain | Lora says you know you are in Burlington when wherever you look, you can see Lake Champlain. The lake is very large and spans New York, Vermont, and Quebec. There are tons of activities one can enjoy while being close to the lake including a stroll on the walking path beside it or a trip to the beach. Since we were only able to spend a little time by the lake, we took a brief walk and drive by the beach. I love its expansiveness, the mountains behind it, and the sailboats gliding on the water. It is extremely picturesque. Next time we go, Lora and I definitely plan on spending more time by Lake Champlain.



Townplace Suites Marriot | We stayed in this hotel, which is located in Williston, a quick 10 minutes away from Burlington. We stayed in a Studio, which has a queen bed, couch, desk, television, kitchen area with a full sized refrigerator, and a bathroom with a bathtub. Every morning, continental breakfast is offered which includes fruit salad, individual apples and bananas, cereal, waffles, muffins, eggs, coffee, and tea. There is also a small refrigerator with bottle juices, milk, and Silk soymilk in both very vanilla and chocolate varieties. Coffee, tea, and ice water are offered all day.

Overall, I really liked this hotel and have no complaints. The room was clean, as was the rest of the building. They offered very big bananas (which are my favorite) and the coffee was really good (although, not as good as Seattle coffee).

When we got takeout on Saturday night, we ate in the continental breakfast area and received no sign of disapproval from the staff, even though three rambunctious children were running around the majority of the time. It's a great family place.



  1. It was such an amazing gift to have you with me on my graduation! Thank you so much for your unending support! Despite all of the rain, I am glad that you got to see at least some of what beautiful Burlington has to offer. I am so glad that you were able to find food that you could enjoy. Can't wait for our next trip!


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