Leunig’s Le Marché to Open This Summer in Shelburne | Food News | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Leunig’s Le Marché to Open This Summer in Shelburne


Published May 17, 2022 at 4:39 p.m.
Updated May 18, 2022 at 10:02 a.m.

Donnell Collins - FILE: JAMES BUCK
  • File: James Buck
  • Donnell Collins

Chef-owner Donnell Collins of Burlington's Leunig's Bistro & Café has leased the former Harrington's of Vermont Shelburne location for "a little French café and market," she said. Construction and equipment deliveries permitting, Collins hopes to open her new Leunig's Le Marché in July.

Work on the 3,000-square-foot space at 5597 Shelburne Road started about two weeks ago. "We are renovating the kitchen to add a pretty good-size bake shop," Collins said.

She added that the new bakery will most likely supply the Leunig's Petit Bijou kiosk on Church Street, across from the original restaurant — "if I can hire a full-time baker."

Like the kiosk, the new deli, bakery and café will offer sandwiches, coffee and pastries. It will also sell specialty packaged foods from France, beer and wine, prepared meals, salads, and custom cheese plates. Sandwiches, such as the classic French jambon-beurre, will be available premade and made to order. Collins said Le Marché may also offer breakfast sandwiches and smoothies.

There will be two or three tables, but the new spot will focus on food to go, including picnic fare for those headed to Shelburne Museum or Shelburne Farms. "It is not my goal to be a sit-down restaurant," Collins said.

"I live in Shelburne, and I feel like there's something missing here," the chef continued. She said she is modeling Le Marché loosely on Burlington's Cheese Outlet/Fresh Market, which closed in 2012 in the 400 Pine Street space currently occupied by ArtsRiot. It's been refreshing, she said, "to think about something a little bit different" from the bistro.

In January 2020, Collins bought out her Leunig's co-owner, Bob Conlon, to become sole owner of the popular downtown dining destination. Conlon, who had worked at Leunig's for 38 years, was retiring at age 69.

With Le Marché, Collins allowed that she might be looking ahead. "Is it my retirement plan?" she asked rhetorically. "Maybe."

At 44, Collins isn't quite there yet, but she is thinking about a couple of her longtime employees who might like to slow down. "Leunig's is a young man and young woman's game," Collins said. The new Shelburne operation "will be a lot simpler and easier to control. I have some staff who definitely deserve that."