Cider, Cheese, Chocolate, Pewter, Glass, Ice Cream
Trip Start Jan 06, 2011
270Trip End Ongoing
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After finishing up at Smugglers Notch we drove through Stowe to get to Waterbury, VT. When we got in to Waterbury the first stop we made was the Cold Hollow Cider Mill. They had a pretty large store with free samples of their products throughout. We sampled some products and then headed to the viewing area for where the apple cider was being made. We watched as the layered out the chopped up apples and then pressed them to push out the juice. This is basically all they do to make the apple cider. After all the juice is pressed out it runs through a heat exchanger bringing it up to 160 degrees and then they immediately cool it back down. Then it is stored cold in huge tanks. We were able to sample some cider while we watched the process. After checking that out we headed to the counter to purchase some apple cider donuts
After the cider mill we headed to a store that had a Cabot Cheese store in it, a Lake Champlain Chocolates sore, and a Danforth Pewter store. Of course we checked out the Cabot Cheese store just to taste some more cheese. I still think the Vintage Sharp Cheddar cheese is the best. I ate tons of it while we were there. When we finished up with the cheese we headed in to the Danforth Pewter store to check out all that was for sale. They had a lot of really neat things, but they were all really pricey so after watching a brief video of him making some stuff we headed into the Lake Champlain Chocolates store. There were so many different varieties of chocolate, but again all of this was very pricey so we just ate the free sample (dark chocolate caramel with salt on the top, delicious!!) and headed out of the store.
Our next stop was the Glass Blowing Studio. I have never seen anyone doing glass blowing before so it was really cool to be able to just sit down and watch it happen. While we were there the guy finished up a tall tumbler glass and then made a shorter glass that were listed in the store as double shot glasses
Next stop Ben & Jerry's Factory Tour. We got there just in time for the 1pm tour so we jumped right in with that. First we watched a brief video about the history of how they started and how they are dedicated to using Fair Trade ingredients. They were bought out by a big corporation, but "they didn’t sell out." They still have a small company mindset, where there is no production on weekends for the workers, and they also will shut down the factory for the workers to go help local non-profits. Then we went to the production room. Only one line was operating today, and they were making “Milk & Cookies.” Here we saw the machines they mix the flavors in, the chunks of stuff, the swirls of stuff, and the filling/lid station. When the ice cream is put into the tubs it is cold but in a semi-solid state. It then goes into the “rapid” freezer which hardens the ice cream to solid in about 1.5 hours. It is a 2 story room where the wall is like an escalator for the tubs; I guess they keep them moving through there. Then the best part of the tour, we got our sample. Today’s sample was Mint Chocolate Chunk. Jared got 2 samples since there were leftovers and no one was taking them