The Farmer's Diner is not your typical diner. First, though part of the restaurant looks like the usual diner, they do have another dining room which is more like a normal restaurant. Second, the diner tries to use as many local ingredients as possible, supporting Vermont farmers and producers. Their mission is to spend over 75 cents of every food dollar with farmers and small-scale food producers who live and work within 70 miles of the diner.
There is a second diner located in Middlebury, and they hope to build more in Vermont in the near future. As a more long term goal, they would like to create similar diners in other states, diners relying on local ingredients.
Breakfast and lunch are served all day. Their menu clearly indicates which products were obtained locally, and you will find most of the menu is local. The breakfast menu has all of the traditional items, including omelettes, pancakes, French toast, and hash & eggs. Prices generally range from $7-$11, making it a bit more expensive than the average diner.
As I was hungry, I opted for the Farmer's Breakfast ($11), which normally includes two eggs, 2 buttermilk pancakes or 2 pieces of French toast, choice of Vermont Smoke & Cure bacon or maple sausage, and home fries. I chose the pancakes and bacon, as well as a side of House Made English Muffin ($2).
The food was good, with the pancakes being especially delicious. They were very light, not like the cakey pancakes you get at some places. They were flavorful and quite large. I also had fresh brewed, unsweetened iced tea served in a mason jar. Overall, a good breakfast destination, as well as a good spot to support local farmers and producers. It is a nice spot to start our Vermont trip.
After breakfast, you can wander through the rest of the Quechee Gorge Village shops. For food/wine destinations, check out the Cabot Quechee Store (cheese and specialty foods), Quechee Country Store (fudge, candy and specialty foods) and the Snow Farm Vineyard Tasting Room (Vermont wines). Other shops include Danforth Pewter, Vermont Toy & Train Museum, Route 4 Glassblowing Studio, Vermont Country Iron and more.