The Mountain View Pub at The North Shire Lodge, Manchester, VT
In the Summer of 2012, a good friend of mine entered the Shires of Vermont Marathon race in Manchester, New Hampshire.
I had a working knowledge of the area, having spent five years at Norwich University in Northfield, Vermont, between 1969 and 1974. So, I volunteered to find appropriate accommodations. I contacted a classmate now in the administration at Norwich and asked for his recommendations. In short order, he recommended The North Shires Lodge, just outside Manchester. It wasn’t difficult to make reservations for two couples and rooms for the runner and his son.
The road trip was along parkways in New York State and, for the most part, four lain state roads in Vermont. For my part, I was glad to be back in the state. As I mentioned above, I have a soft heart for my Alma Mater.
The North Shires Lodge at First Sight
The Lodge is perched on a grassy hill about one hundred yards from Vermont Highway 14. The view is a panorama of low hills and the Green Mountains in the distance. All rooms have sliding glass doors that open onto seating areas with camp chairs for visitors to sit and enjoy the view, just out of sight of the traffic.
On arrival, we found an arrangement of seven brick red shingled rooms on either side of the residence/reception area/Pub.
Tim and Kerry Walker welcomed us when we registered, gave us our room keys, and we signed up for a choice of two breakfasts. Breakfast was included with the room. You filled in your preferences on a sign-up list hung on the wall to the right of the Registration desk. There were two different choices each morning. And a two-hour window of time choice.
Our Home Away from Home
When I first met Tim and Kerry Walker, it was obvious that they loved what they were doing. It was genuine hospitality. Needless to say, that has been the main reason for our annual July pilgrimage to Manchester.
I must admit that a natural attraction is a pristine swimming pool about twenty-five yards up a slight rise at the back of the property. It is one of the best-kept small hotel pools I have enjoyed. And it is the reason my wife anticipates returning every year.
The second attraction is the comfortable design and decorations of the rooms. The wood-accented vaulted white ceilings give the rooms a high and airy feel, along with the sliding glass doors. The trout fishing-themed room accents and rustic furniture are comforting. The bathrooms are basic, but they are four-star maintained, and the linens are as fresh as can be.
A Look Back at The North Shire Lodge
In July of 2022, Tim and Kerry handed over the reins of the North Shires Lodge to a couple of fine folks. We look forward to visiting them in 2023.
This is a short visit to The North Shire Lodge…
My Favorite Pub
The Mountain View Pub is about 900 square feet, with light green walls covered with daguerreotypes and old photos of four or five generations of Tim’s family. Colonial and Early American objects added to the comfortable feeling of the room.
The Pub is divided into two areas by a dark wood divider. When you enter the Pub, the bar is to your left with seven chairs, if I remember correctly. There is a two-seat high-top table at the end of the bar. The back bar is made up of a large selection of spirits. Particular favor is paid to local distilleries. Four locally brewed beers are on tap.
The sitting area has a couch, two easy chairs, a piano, and a coffee table. I might have missed a few other features. I spend most of my time on the bar side.
Most of the guests who frequent the Pub are regulars, so to speak. Many of Tim’s guests in the summer are annual visitors. Those who are not regulars soon enjoy Tim’s hospitality and skill at mixing the perfect cocktail. There is a list of house drinks that is impressive.
In a few short years, we had to admit that visiting the North Shire Lodge became more like visiting a home away from home that visiting a hotel.
Now that I have described my relationship with the North Shire Lodge let’s visit the Pub and taste a few beers.
The Last Beer Tastings at The Mountain View Pub with Tim Walker
These two videos were recorded on 20 July 2022.
Your intrepid journalist is the host of these two videos, the last beers Tim served over that bar. The new owner, Brad, joined us for these tastings. My best wishes for both and a fond farewell to Tim’s Mountain View Pub.
Simple Roots Good Neighbor IPA No. 1 Tasting at The North Shire Lodge
Ridge Runner Bold Vermont Ale Tasting No. 2 at The North Shire Lodge
The North Shire Lodge Tasting Notes Source Material
The Website for The North Shire Lodge tells their story:
“Wake up to one of Manchester, Vermont’s most spectacular mountain views – the Green and Taconic Mountain Ranges rising above the historic Battenkill Valley. Then head to the Lodge for breakfast served in our pub. Guests who book direct with us on this website or by phone always receive our full freshly cooked breakfast free each morning you are with us. We serve our famous pancakes daily and rotating options that may include omelets, frittatas, crepes, and more. After enjoying all the Manchester, Vermont area has to offer, you can relax at the end of your day in your own private pub, the Mountain View Pub.”
“Our accommodations are private, clean & comfortable with the most beautiful views. The North Shire Lodge is located on the foothills of Mt. Equinox in one of Manchester, Vermont’s most scenic and historic areas. Each room has an 8-foot wide sliding glass door that becomes your window to this beautiful view. Our uniquely designed rooms have cathedral ceilings and all the amenities you would expect from any quality hotel, inn, or bed & breakfast.”
TripAdvisor.com gives the following observation…
“A quality Manchester, Vermont lodge serving a wonderful bed and breakfast style hot breakfast each morning. The Mountain View Pub is a private guest amenity featuring classic cocktails and a huge selection of single malt and bourbon in a relaxing and quiet atmosphere. Fourteen chalet-style units with sliding glass doors and stunning mountain views. Huge free video library, wireless internet, heated outdoor pool. Located in one of Manchester’s most scenic and historic areas. Set in the foothills of Mt. Equinox.”
From Vermont.com tells us…
All Rooms are non-smoking and have the following:
High quality beds – one king or 2 doubles. / Wireless Internet Access for your laptop (free)
Coffee Makers / Refrigerators / Hair Dryers /Irons with full size ironing boards
HDTV with DVD player in all rooms with 140+ channels
Private Bathrooms with full shower and bathtub
Telephones with free local calling / AM/FM clock radios
Air Conditioning in all rooms / Individually controlled heat (silent, comfortable heat)
Cathedral Ceilings for bright and spacious rooms / Huge Sliding glass doors for fresh air and mountain views