I woke up early on Saturday to the sound of my dad grinding coffee beans in the kitchen, somewhere around 7:30, maybe 8 am. The sun was shining despite a forecast for showers, and I was eager to hop out of bed.

The night before, my dad, Bonnie, and I made a plan to have breakfast at Vergennes Laundry. I’d heard about this place back in the fall or early winter. Julianne Jones, a Middlebury College grad, and her partner, Didier Murat, opened this French brick-oven bakery on Main Street in Vergennes in late 2010. With a wink to both Thomas Keller’s beloved French Laundry in Yountville, CA, and the space’s previous tenant (a laundromat), Vergennes Laundry serves classic French pastry (gougères, pain aux raisin, pain au chocolat, plain croissants, savory tarts), Intelligentsia coffee, and local Kombucha on tap. They also have homemade granola, and at 4 pm, bread that’s made in their wood oven.

The interiors are spare, clean, with long wooden communal tables, and white-painted walls. Something about this place reminded me a little of Blue Bottle back in Williamsburg. I told Didier that if they were in my neighborhood there’d be a line out the door. He nodded in agreement but they’re optimistic that they can make it in this small town—and I hope they do—thanks to their regular customers and soon, an influx of tourists during the summer months. The quality of ingredients, attention to detail, and plain ol’ deliciousness of the offerings will keep people coming back.

When the three of us arrived for breakfast at 9:30, we had the place to ourselves. But, just a few minutes later, a line of customers came in to sample the buttery, crusty, croissants and sip the strong, almost tangy coffee. We lingered at our table for nearly an hour, and I debated a second, third pastry. But I was headed to the Farmer’s Market in Middlebury where I knew I was in for some more good noshing.


Didier at the counter

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