Thanks to its size and seven trillion gallons of water, Lake Champlain creates the perfect microclimate for growing grapes. East Shore Vineyard is one of its direct beneficiaries, with more than 8,000 vines creeping across 11 acres along the lake's shores.
Bob and Linda Livingstone planted the vineyard's first grapevines in 2000. In the years since, they've weathered the Grand Isle's challenges?including the notoriously unforgiving weather?to create award-winning wines that are now available in 160 retailers and restaurants throughout Vermont. But fans don't have to go shopping or hide in a sommelier's cummerbund just to get a taste of the vineyard's products. Instead, they can visit its Burlington-based tasting room and pair sips with Vermont-made cheeses and chocolates.
Over seven years, the Boston String Quartet has vibrated strings in collaboration with artists such as John Mayer and the Boston Ballet, stirred the air molecules at Symphony Hall and PBS, and performed by invitation for former President George H.W. Bush. With this deal, eighth-note connoisseurs can wrap their eardrums around the quartet's dulcet tones as they present "Xibus," an evening of contemporary and classical that marks the zenith of a two-day workshop collaborating with Finneytown High School orchestra students. Over the course of the evening program, the quartet and the students will cajole their chordophones into ringing out in harmonious arrangements of music by Carlos Santana, the Beatles, Led Zeppelin, and Bill Gates's new Viking-punk band, as well as performing original compositions by members of Boston String Quartet.
Stowe's idyllic scenery is defined by its prime location between the Green Mountains and Mount Mansfield, Vermont's highest peak at 4,395 feet. Winter sport enthusiasts flock to Stowe Mountain Resort, whose powdery slopes encompass 485 skiable acres across 116 trails. After a morning on the slopes, guests and their snowman plus-ones can swing by the West Branch Gallery & Sculpture Park to marvel at artwork including the statuary in the outdoor sculpture garden.
When dusk falls, the opening credits roll at Randall Drive-In Theatre. Families and family pets pull into parking spots, rain or shine, to enjoy double or triple features of current blockbusters. The films play Friday through Sunday, and a single ticket, which is free for kids younger than 5, grants patrons admission to the entire double or triple feature.
Four generations of Boydens have lovingly tended hundreds of acres of land that make up Boyden Valley Winery & Spirits. Plucked from more than 8,000 vines, these grapes are transformed into European-style wines, aged in French oak barrels in the on-site cellar. The results are 18 different products, including red, whites, and fruit wines as well as ice wines, hard cider, and cream liqueurs, which can be sipped by the glass on the patio, during tastings, tours, or at home.