Steaming chai, warming lunch at Tulsi Tea Room

“As snow finally fell for the first time this year, I was transported back in time and halfway around the globe to Dharmasalam, India. Several years ago I had the good fortune to travel in northern India; because I was there during the winter, my companions and I spent quite a bit of time in teahouses, warming ourselves with pots of spicy chai (tea) and watching the snow fall. Tulsi Tea Room, on Elm Street, has recreated this teahouse experience quite wonderfully.”

So I wrote about Tulsi Tea Room in 2009, when it first opened as the Tulsi Tea Collective. Solenne Thompson, one of the original collective members, took individual ownership of the teahouse this past summer, and under Thompson’s leadership the teahouse has retained its warm, inviting flavor while expanding its food and beverage offerings.

Mung bean daal with almonds and raisins, and a fresh hot chapati filled with potato and carrot curry, made up my lunch last week:
Here is Thompson behind the counter, which is laden with the raw, whole-foods sweet treats she creates under her other business name, Amai Bijoux:
Learn more about Thompson, Tulsi’s lunch and grab-and-go offerings, and the restaurant’s semi-controversial equipment addition in this week’s Montpelier Bridge.


Celebrate Father’s Day with Food and Farm Events

Lots of great food events happening this weekend; if Dad’s a gourmand, take him out for a delicious Father’s Day!

Tonight (Friday), Ariel’s Restaurant in Brookfield is hosting an Andalucian dinner in cooperation with Scragg Mountain Music, a local musical company sponsoring a weekend of madrigals and the poetry of Spanish poet Federico García Lorca. The Andalucian menu includes tapas, paella, and olive oil cake. Chef Lee Duberman generally does everything right, so she’s sure to ace this Spanish menu. The 3-course prix-fixe meal is $40, or $60 with Richard’s expert wine pairings. Dinner’s at 6 pm; the music starts across the road at 8 pm. Dinner reservations at 276-3939.

Saturday, check out Americana band Bovine Social Club and special guest Patrick Fitzsimmons in concert at the Tupelo Muisc Hall in White River Junction. The show is sponsored by NOFA-VT and will benefit the Vermont Farm Share Program, which provides subsidized CSA shares to limited-income Vermont families. Tickets are $25 in advance and are available at the Tupelo Music Hall by phone at 603-437-5100 or online at

Sunday, join the Floating Bridge Food and Farms Cooperative for a Father’s Day Farmers Market at the Brookfield Old Town Hall from 12-4 pm. Don’t make Dad man the grill on his special day – there will be lots of grilled meat for lunch, and more meat from FBFFC member farmers to take home (bring a cooler). Enjoy live music and swimming in Sunset Lake. It’s also Ariel’s Restaurant’s 15th anniversary, and cake will be served, so come celebrate Dad, Ariel’s, and summer in beautiful Brookfield.