Happy New Year! Welcome to our third annual Liquid Assets issue, where we celebrate a small sample of local brews, tonics and booze made right here in Vermont. This past year I focused on giving locally made gifts at every opportunity and made note of the response.
Over and over I noticed that when you give a gift that has a story behind it, a discussion begins about the product and its maker or the store location and its owner. These shared stories are inspiring, reinforcing the care, focus and love that is put into our local products and independent businesses.
According to the Advocates for Independent Business (AIB), over the past few years locally owned stores have experienced resurgence, as savvy customers realize that they offer high quality and unique products, personalized service and stronger economic returns for their communities. There is new research that confirms: Shopping local is better for your local economy.
Speaking of buying local, you will want to visit your independent bookstore after you read our roundup by Kristina Sepetys of food-related titles to quench your thirst. We also explore two different meats for your table: goat and rabbit. The results are delicious and—sticking to our liquid assets theme—we couldn’t help but add a little wine to each dish.
Restaurants are about more than just the food—they’re about the experience, from lighting to music to your greeting when you walk through the door. Writer Frederica Templeton visits The Perfect Wife Restaurant and Tavern in Manchester for our Back of the House feature and samples chef and owner Amy Chamberlain’s down-to-earth cuisine.
With all of our craft beer choices we couldn’t settle on featuring just one, so we went to sample some of the options available from Hill Farmstead Brewery, Rock Art Brewery, Backacre Beermakers and The Alchemist. Each unique and full of personality.
It’s not too late to add a New Year’s resolution of buying only local for 2015—a promise that will reap many benefits for you and the receivers of your generosity.