We had the pleasure of having dinner at the North Hero House one night last week. The place is a fixture in the center of North Hero, which is just up the road from where I grew up. It provided seasonal employment over the years for a good number of people around there. A couple of my teenage friends, and my cousin at one time, worked there summers as chambermaids and waitresses and the like. It used to be super-exciting in those days, because it was a holiday destination for Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward -- at least once (there's a photo proving it), and in the local lore it grew to "every year," though I'm not sure about that.
The North Hero House has gone through a few iterations over the years, and is now open year-round. My sister was married there in the '80s -- it was a sweet little ceremony on the grass pier. Throughout the '80s and early '90s, when I was the court reporter at the courthouse which is immediately next door to the place, I'd often go over for a charming lunch with the court staff and the judge. The restaurant really started to become an upscale eatery, and now it is truly at the higher end of the dining experience. I don't know anything about the sleeping/staying accommodations except that it appears to be super-charming and beautifully renovated all the way around, with the sort of attention to detail by the staff and the surroundings that really makes a person feel welcome.
We chose to sit on their pretty and intimate enclosed porch which overlooks the lake. This is the porch from the outside:
It was a beautiful evening that night (I just missed catching a rainbow with my camera, and the drive home was under the full moon), and we had an absolutely delightful meal with super-friendly service, after we were seated by the charming maître d', Frank. Part of the view from the porch:
David had gazpacho which I tasted, and it was the best I'd ever had. I had a mojito which was perfect - so delicious and fresh and refreshing --and the presentation delighted me almost more than the drink itself. Tall, slim, and sexy! You will no doubt notice that I had taken a couple (or four) large slurps before I thought of capturing the image for the blog.
There was a large selection of interesting homemade dinner rolls, and the salad was very fresh, pretty and delicious, and lightly dressed. I think the salad greens were from their gardens just down the road, which I wanted to photograph as well, but it got too dark. I even went back the next day and hoped to get a photo, but it was raining too hard that day.
David had the salmon roulade, which was so delicious I accused him of being a little bit too much like Mr. Jefferies, in that he wanted to lick the plate, and I didn't blame him.
It was just a really wonderful meal in a very charming location.
And then all of a sudden I noticed that on the soundtrack, they were playing Tom Jones, and I'm sorry, but for me that just sealed the deal. A little bit giggly from my mojito, I couldn't help but remember one of my favorite comedy routines from Dana Carvey, about Tom .... and his JONES.
I still have a soft spot for good old Tom. You have just got to LOVE a guy who spends his entire life singing five songs over and over and over again, and doing it with such heart and energy, as if 50 years has not even passed by at all. And for still being so steamy and dreamy. If I already weren't charmed enough by this whole experience, when I was doing my usual thorough research for this post I found this Uncyclopedia article which made me laugh and laugh, to the point of tears streaming down my once-high cheekbones.
Please do not show me any current pictures of him. I just want to think of him like this:
In case that picture wasn't enough, I had to find another picture to illustrate what Dana was talking about, and yeah, I think I found one:
You can leave your hat on....