It's Not All Tempeh and Tofu at Montpelier’s Kismet — but It Is All Delicious | 7 Nights Spotlight | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Food + Drink » 7 Nights Spotlight

It's Not All Tempeh and Tofu at Montpelier’s Kismet — but It Is All Delicious

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Kismet in Montpelier - JEB WALLACE-BRODEUR
  • Jeb Wallace-Brodeur
  • Kismet in Montpelier

Spelt flour. Steamed greens. Roasted beets. Yup, Montpelier's Kismet is that kind of place. But this charming restaurant way off State & Main manages to be wholesome without being austere. Here you can get steamed veggies over grains and a spicy Bloody Mary.

Location Details Kismet
52 State St.
Barre/Montpelier
Montpelier, VT
802-223-8646
closed: Mon., Tues.
American (New) and Eclectic/Fusion

Kismet welcomes diners of all persuasions. Owner Crystal Maderia comfortably caters to vegetarians and vegans — with abundant tempeh, seasoned tofu and legumes — but avoids making animal-product consumers feel a lick of guilt. Local ham and bacon, raw-milk cheddar and hollandaise made with free-range eggs give the food a fresh-from-the-farm feel.

Kismet in Montpelier - JEB WALLACE-BRODEUR
  • Jeb Wallace-Brodeur
  • Kismet in Montpelier

Though local farmers grew the ingredients, and many of them are organic, the most expensive item on the menu is $12. Portion sizes are ample, too. The ham-and-cheese stuffed "Eggs Benedict Crêpe" — a creamy, crispy, savory delight — comes with a mound of colorful roasted roots. It would take a strong-willed eater to wolf down an entire plate of decadent "Kismet French Toast" saturated with maple custard and topped with candied walnuts and a puff of whipped cream.

At Kismet, "homemade" doesn't translate as "plain." Maderia's culinary skills are evident in such dishes as eggs baked in wild-mushroom-and-herb cream. Chicken is slow poached before being swaddled in a buckwheat wrap and dosed with a lemony, pesto-laced sauce. Caffeine avoiders can sip on house-roasted dandelion-root lattes made with maple-sweetened cow, hemp or soy milk. They're much better than they sound.

This article was originally published in 7 Nights: The Seven Days Guide to Vermont Restaurants & Bars in April 2010.

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