We spent a week up in Vermont in a cabin on the shore of Lake Champlain. We were about 10 minutes away from Vergennes, the closest town, so we decided to have dinner at Black Sheep Bistro based on several good reviews here. (note: we had also hoped to have dinner at Christoph's, however, it has closed!)
Well, we enjoyed our dinner at BSB so much that we went back 2 more times during the week. It was so convenient, so reasonably priced, and so yummy, that we felt no need to drive further for dinner. Okay, probably we should have gone down to Middlebury for a meal, but we get lazy!
I really like the way they organize the menu. Its fairly small, but well selected. All apps are $7, all entrees $19, all desserts $7. Wines are $20, $25, $30 and $35. The most we spent for 2 was $150, and that was a very full meal indeed.
Our favorite apps: summer rolls made of shredded jicama and apple wrapped in rice paper, and seasoned with some vinegar served with a dipping sauce. Also venison cigar rolls with a dijon demiglace dipping sauce were a sort of venison sausage wrapped up in an eggroll wrapper and fried crunchy. They also made an curried asparagus bisque that was quite light and flavorful. I thought it would be too rich for a hot night, but it was wonderful.
My favorite entree was the chicken breast stuffed with brie and bacon, served with a balsamic sauce. The coffee rubbed lamb loin was also very good, as was the coriander crusted hanger steak.
Rather than making a particular potato side with each entree, the restaurant serves a family style portion of garlic mashed potatoes AND a cone of shoestring fries. The fries come with 3 dipping sauces: ketchup, garlic mayo and basil mayo. I was psyched to not have to choose! But if I had, the fries with the basil mayo were awesome.
The desserts may have been the weakest part of the menu. they were good, but really didn't stand out. The home made raspberry sorbet was really good. The blueberry peach tart was a little dry, and light on peaches, and the ricotta cheese cake with the brulee topping was just okay. We proably should have ordered the strawberries with ice cream, balsamic sauce and black pepper, but I'm just not a big fan of that trendy combination. it seemed very popular. However, the brownie sundae with the caramel sauce and toasted almonds was awfully good.
The restaurant is small, the ambiance casual. We liked eating outside on the sidewalk, but at dark the bugs came out, so only do this if you are going relatively early. Service was mostly good, or at least unremarkable. it was best the last day...I think after going 3 times in one week they may have suspected we were restaurant reviewers or something!
All in all, I think Black Sheep Bistro is highly recommended if you are in this part of Vermont.