Photo by Jacqueline Bennett  Hayrides and pumpkin picking at Buell’s Orchard Eastford, CT 10/10/2016

Vanilla Bean Cafe Pomfret CT Columbus Day 2016

Vanilla Bean Cafe Pomfret CT Columbus Day 2016

Article & Photos by Jacqueline Bennett newsandviewsjb.com005








The beauty of a quintessential New England autumn day was enhanced by a Columbus Day lunch at the Vanilla Bean Cafe in Pomfret, Connecticut followed by a stop at Buell’s Orchard’s annual Harvest Festival in Eastford. This was my second consecutive Columbus Day making the ‘Bean and Buell’s’  trek !




Vanilla Bean Cafe

001So much has been written about the Vanilla Bean that framed articles fill hallway walls at this quaint restaurant with the hide-away feel nestled in Connecticut’s “Quiet Corner”. The menu is large; a personal favorite is the create your own half sandwich & homemade soup combo – BLT on marbled rye with Tomato Florentine – delicious.







A cup of Joe & solitude.


On this day, staffer Connor was sporting a tie dye t-shirt he made which cleverly channeled “The Bard”. It read, “to Bean or not to Bean…? is it really a question?” Love it! 



The relaxing atmosphere alone at the Vanilla Bean is worth a drive which brings one along country roads, beautiful in each season yet with a special autumn appeal. It is a cozy spot to meet up with friends or savor a cup of ‘Joe’ and some solitude.








Buell’s Orchard

Another hayride at Buell's.

Another hayride at Buell’s.



Buell’s popular apple cider donuts served warm.

Buell’s Orchard is about 20 minutes west of the Bean. This year’s Harvest Festival seemed even busier than last year.  A “sorry” sign noted they ran out of free donuts after some 5,000 donuts had been given out. Nonetheless, free cider was still flowing.



Buell’s popular apple cider donuts were available however, for sale inside their small farm store. Lines to the cash registers snaked out from beneath a canopy tent as folks waited patiently to pay for treasures such those donuts, or pumpkins hand-picked in one of the patches. Meanwhile, a chicken barbecue and the Dave Reiner & the Reiner Family Band were in full swing.


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If as has been reported, an insufficient amount of rain could result in a pumpkin shortage this season it doesn’t seem to be happening at Buell’s. As well, perhaps thanks to an overnight rainfall, autumn foliage that has seemed slower in arriving than previously ‘magically’ appeared for the holiday.








Vanilla Bean Cafe, 450 W. Rd, Pomfret CT 06258, 860-928-1562  http://www.thevanillabeancafe.com

Buell’s Orchard 108 Crystal Pond Rd, Eastford CT 06242, 860-974-1150 http://www.buellsorchard.com