Small City, Big Beer

    Any UVM student with taste buds knows where to go to eat good food in Burlington, and those who are 21 know where to go on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday night to drink.    To find a good blend of the two activities, search no further than the intersection of College St. and St. Paul St. This part of Burlington is home to two great restaurants that will satisfy your need for brews, burgers and (flat)breads.One of these notable brewpubs is the Vermont Pub and Brewery (VPB). Founded in 1988 by the late Greg Noonan, VPB brews a variety of its own beers such as ale, lager and IPA.    “We brew 14 barrels at a time,” co-manager of VPB Mick Bowen said. “That’s about 28 kegs two times a week.”There are usually about nine beers on tap at all times, as well, he said.Bowen and his staff work hard for their restaurant.”We are probably the busiest kitchen in Burlington,” Bowen said. “Over 20 years we’ve made mistakes and learned from them. We have the best staff in Burlington”.    To make the existence of large home-brewed beer selection possible, “we have two incredibly dedicated brewers,” he said.    VPB’s menu states that their beer never travels more than 50 feet from the brewery to the tap and that their beer is as fresh as beer gets.    At $4 a pint, a poor college student can only hope that the beer will be as good as it sounds.    UVM senior Hannah LeMieux said she likes to drink there occasionally. “If my parents are visiting and it is on their dime, [I would drink] the Bombay Grab from VPB.”    A stone’s throw from VPB is American Flatbread, Burlington Hearth. Flatbread, well known for its thin crust pizzas, is also known for its Zero Gravity Beer.    “Years ago, we had plans to create a zero-emission brewery at the Intervale,” said Pau Sayler, Flatbread owner and assistant to the brewmaster. “Zero Gravity is a play on brewers’ terms – nothing in the beer is just water. The zero means zero emissions.”    While Flatbread’s beers aren’t exactly carbon neutral, Flatbread does a good job of trying to stay local and use organic ingredients.”The Sticky Fingers brew uses all local hops,” Saylor said. “[While] we have four other beers that use local hops.”Regardless of whether the beer is carbon neutral or not, there’s no end to good drinking in this town — it is easy to get carried away.”In Ireland, the fathers used to give their daughters advice: drink the dark stuff. That’s the philosophy of microbrewing,” Bowen said. “With each beer, just sit down and enjoy it. There’s no need to put a lampshade on your head [and get really drunk].”Vermont Pub and Brewery:Vermontbrewery.com802-865-0500144 College St, Burlington, VermontSunday- Wednesday 11:30AM- 1AMThursday- Saturday 11:30AM- 2AMVermont Brewers AssociationVermontbrewers.comAmerican Flatbread, Burlington Hearth, Friday-Sunday 11:30AM- 2:30PMDinner, seven days a week, 5:00PM- 10:00PM (11PM Friday and SaturdayTap Room, 11:30AM- close Friday- Sunday4:30PM- close Monday- Thursday(802) 861-2999 115 St. Paul StreetBurlington, Vermont