There are few things as magical as heading up the mountain under a cold, starlit sky to find an incredible three- to five-course meal waiting for you, complete with beer or wine pairings. More and more resorts around Vermont are serving special dinners in unusual places on the hill—ranging from the motor room of a chairlift or a yurt at Killington to a cabin atop a mountain in Woodstock. Depending on the location, access is either by snowcat, snowshoes or skinning. Here are a few that are being offered this season. Book early though, as space is limited.
Sugarbush Resort: Allyn’s Lodge and Glen House
With Sugarbush’s Remote Fireside Dining Series, you can book Allyn’s Lodge for a private party (minimum is 12) and skin, snowshoe or take the Lincoln Limo (a snowcat) to a multi-course gourmet meal. The dinner feature local food and fireside dining with wine and beer pairings by Vermont Chef of the Year Gerry Nooney. Beer lovers can try the Allyn’s Lodge Beer Dinner Series, where a skin/snowshoe or snowcat ride to Allyn’s is followed by a three-course meal with beer pairings provided by local brewery owners. At Mount Ellen, plan a moonlit skin or snowshoe up to the Glen House for a fun, casual dinner and drinks. Price: $183 per person for Remote Fireside dinners; $150 per person for beer dinners; Tour de Moon cost depends on what you purchase at Glen House. When: Remote Fireside Dining Series: by reservation, Jan. 17, Feb. 14, Feb. 18 & Feb. 20; Beer Dinners: Foam Brewers, Jan. 31; Lawson’s Finest Liquids, March 5; Tour de Moon: Feb. 29, March 21. sugarbush.com
Killington: Ledgewood Yurt and Motor Room Bar
Two very different settings play host to magical dinners on Killington Mountain, accessed by snowcat. Skiers and riders may know The Ledgewood Yurt, the “glamping”-style yurt with elegant tables, oriental carpets and top-flight fare as a lunch place. But on select nights, you can head there for multi-course candlelit dinners too. Meanwhile, the Motor Room Bar—yes, it is housed in the actual glass-walled motor room drive terminal of Killington’s first four-passenger lift—offers a very different vibe. Climb up for phenomenal views and a menu that might include Raclette cheese, maple-seared pork belly and bacon-wrapped scallops. Price: Ledgewood Yurt Saturday and Sunday dinners are $142 per person and run weekly from Jan. 4 through March 21, with an additional dinner on Feb. 16. Motor Room Bar dinners are $75 per person. When: Fridays through March 20 and Saturdays through March 21. killington.com
Mad River Glen: Full Moon Snowshoe and Lawson’s Beer Tasting
Join naturalist Sean Lawson, founder of Lawson’s Finest Liquids, for a one-hour full moon snowshoe ramble and beer tasting (back at the base lodge). Included: fresh air, views of the full moon and a flight of three Lawson’s Finest Liquids beers. The snowshoe tour takes place at and around the ski area. Snowshoe rentals available. Price: $35 per person (no food, just beer). When: Jan. 10, Feb. 8. madriverglen.com
Mount Snow: Beer Dinner
Enjoy five gourmet courses at Mount Snow’s 1900’ Burger in the base lodge, all inspired by and paired with beers from Zero Gravity Brewing and Maine Beer Company. The evening will be hosted by a brewery representative and the restaurant’s executive chef, who will introduce each course and describe what you’ll be eating and drinking and why they chose the pairing. Price: $80 per person. When: January 17 (Citizen Cider), February 14 (Allagash Brewing Company) and March 27 (Four Quarters Brewing). mountsnow.com
Smugglers’ Notch Resort: Top of the Notch Cabin Dinners.
Ride the lift to The Top of the Notch, a mountain cabin on top of Sterling Mountain, for a candlelit gourmet dinner from The Hearth & Candle restaurant (think venison stew, local and organic vegetables and other Vermont favorites) in a simple setting, followed by a 40-minute snowshoe back down to the base. Price: $85 per person and you can bring your own beverages. When: Tuesday evenings throughout the ski season. smuggs.com
Stratton Mountain Resort: Mid Mountain Lodge
Catch a snowcat ride up to the Mid Mountain Lodge for drinks followed by a gourmet three-course dinner that’s limited to 20. This dinner, with its glamorous fine dining atmosphere, is one not to miss. The menus rotate but dishes might include quail, rabbit roulade or blueberry-ginger sorbets. Price: $156 per person. When: February 2, 9, 16 & 23 and March 2. stratton.com
Stowe Mountain Resort: Cliff House Series
Take a sunset gondola ride to Stowe’s Cliff House, a fine dining establishment perched at the top of the gondola, just below Vermont’s highest peak. Diners can enjoy a multi-course themed meal with wine pairings and a view. Price: $119 per person. When: January 11, “Winter in New England” themed dinner; January 25 “The Mediterranean Coast” themed diner; February 14, Valentine’s Day dinner; February 29, “A Tour of Spain” themed dinner; March 14, “Sugar Shack” themed dinner; March 28, “Cuisine of France.” stowe.com
This story was last updated on Jan. 8, 2020.