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Black Krim Tavern's Changing Menu Highlights the Freshest Vermont Ingredients

By Pamela Sosnowski

It's impossible for regular patrons to ever get bored eating at the Black Krim Tavern, even if they return week after week. That's because the menu of the Randolph establishment literally changes on a weekly basis, to take advantage of the freshest seasonal ingredients.

"Our menu changes frequently based on what is available from the farmers we source through, the fantastic seasons of Vermont, and our current mood," owner Sarah Natvig said. "The structure of the menu is always to make sure we have a balance of dietary options such as vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, and so on."

Natvig opened Black Krim (named after a crimson colored Russian heirloom tomato) nearly seven years ago to bring an organic menu with simple, healthy dishes to the Randolph community. She also always dreamed of opening up her own restaurant, and after conducting market research decided it was the right time to pursue her dream. Her husband, Chip, is a local farmer who happens to be one of Black Krim's main produce suppliers.

Recent menus this summer have included items such as chèvre-stuffed squash blossoms, roasted pork belly, asparagus crepes, and the Pebble Brook Farm garden salad, featuring baby beets, carrots, shell peas and more picked fresh from the fields.

"Since we have a produce farm that supplies our veggies needs in season, it's quite easy to provide our guests with the freshest produce," Natvig said. "I am usually harvesting the very veggies that I helped plant and cultivate during their growing time. It's a great connection to our menu and our style."

The menu always offers several selections to create the perfect three-course dining experience: tantalizing appetizers to start, hearty main dishes, and satisfying homemade desserts end the meal with. Cinnamon bourbon cheesecake, apple and plum crisp, and coconut mousse with blueberries are just some of the sweet treats that were offered on previous menus. A selection of wines, beers, sake, and cocktails are also available.

The dining room is described as fun and energetic with a mix of seating styles including high and low top tables. The lounge/bar area features a timber framed bar with touches of slate and copper. Sidewalk seating is also available on Merchants Row, the side street that the restaurant is located on. The restaurant debuts a new menu every Tuesday, and is closed on Sundays and Mondays.

The Black Krim Tavern can host private parties that feature the same fresh menu items, or Navtig and her staff can work with clients to create custom dishes. Whether one visits for a meal or a private gathering, Black Krim's mission is the same.

"Our mission is to provide an atmosphere that resembles a dinner party at your house...relaxed, cozy, romantic (if that's the guests' expectations) and personable," Navtig said. "It's important to us that our guests feel comfortable asking about our menu, asking about the farm and how we prepare our dishes; just as you would over at a friend's house."

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