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  • NECI on Main

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NECI on Main
NECI on Main

NECI on Main Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.neci.edu/neci-on-main/index
  • Email: neil.archibald@neci.edu
  • Phone: (802) 223-3188
  • Hours of Operation: SUNDAY Brunch Buffet 10:00 am - 2:00 pm
    MONDAY Closed
    TUESDAY - SATURDAY Lunch 11:30 am - 2:00 pm
    Lite Fare 2:30 pm - 5:30 pm
    Dinner 5:30 pm - 9:00 pm Farm to Table & Mediterranean Tapas Menu
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Contemporary American, Contemporary European
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: Our Wine Room is a private room located in our Cellar area. It seats 16 guests comfortably. This space is popular for smaller gathering or meetings.

    Please contact Neil Archibald for Wine Room inquiries

    Our Chef’s Table dining room is located on our second floor. It offers seating for up to 40 guests. In our quiet, private space, separate from the rest of the hustle and bustle of our Cellar and Main Floor.

    Please contact Fawn Wells Maxfield for Chef's Table inquiries
  • Private Party Facilities: NECI's fabulous dining rooms are available to you for business meetings, corporate retreats, holiday parties, rehearsal dinners, banquets, private dining and so much more.

    The use of regional ingredients, innovative cuisine and gracious service in an intimate setting continues on. For a one of a kind culinary experience, no matter the occasion, a fine dining experience awaits you and your guests.
  • Private Party Contact: Fawn Wells (802) 225-3333
  • Special Events & Promotions: Vermont Restaurant Week menus available for Lunch, Dinner & Tapas 4/26/13 - 5/10/13

    Local Foods Dinner Thursday May 9, 2013 @ 6:30 PM in Chef's Table
    (reservations required)

    Mother's Day Brunch Sunday May 12, 2013
    (reservations recommended)

Getting there

  • Cross Street: School St.
  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from NECI on Main
Imagine the entire state of Vermont as a food experiment or as its own laboratory where food products are grown and created for this particular climate; seasonally, organically, and sustainably. Now imagine restaurants as teaching laboratories this restaurant for instance.

NECI on Main is a production lab for New England Culinary Institute. For 30 years we have been teaching students to make connections with farmers, between the landscape and our food, and between seasons and culinary traditions. Sometimes we include food items that express a particular sense of place from outside of Vermont, or culinary traditions from other cultures, and use those items or experiences to enhance the foods grown here in Vermont.

Our menu is no exception in this teaching philosophy, and reflects the best that Vermont’s farmers, and America’s next generation of young chefs offer.

Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerContemporary American
  • Diners' Choice WinnerNotable Wine List
  • Diners' Choice WinnerSpecial Occasion
Diner Reviews
  • "For Our 11th Anniversary we dined there and it was the Challenge of the Chopped Champions and it was FANTASTIC. It was so fun! Our server was GREAT! Enjoyed her a lot."
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "We had a fabulous meal here! The staff were very friendly and professional. They made our night extra special when they heard we were there to celebrate a special occasion, and made it that much more memorable."
    Dined on 4/5/2014
  • "There are not a lot of options in Montpelier to start with and most are chain type restauraunts or so small getting a table is near impossible. This was my first time at NECI and the food and service were great and high end food for a place like Montpelier."
    Dined on 4/9/2014
  • "We've dined at NECI for some years, during Green Mountain Film Festivals; it's one of the high spots. The conflict with films can make a dinner rushed, but Sunday brunch is leisurely. Brunch, dinner - they're all creative and fantastically good. I'm amazed that such innovative menus, exquisite preparation, and memorable flavors can be achieved in a teaching restaurant. The venue is blessedly quiet, elegant without show, the personnel friendly without exuberance, and quietly knowledgeable. This is one place where you have confidence that praise for a particular dish will be passed along to the chef responsible,"
    Dined on 3/23/2014
  • "Whether for lunch, brunch or dinner, the many times we have eaten at NECI on Main has been pleasurable...good food, great wine list and affordable......especially enoy going with close friends. The restaurant has updated dining room and it appears more expansive, in a good way."
    Dined on 3/11/2014
  • "Variety, great presentation and food made with skill and care. The best!"
    Dined on 3/9/2014
  • "We enjoyed brunch with an elderly (older than we were) friend. We had reservations, but she was quite late. The wait staff never pushed us to eat, just brought coffee, then a little pastry teaser, allowed us as much time as needed to chat, catch up, and finally eat. Food all excellent, nice variety of "main dishes" as well as salad and desserts. Could have used some plain bread or rolls--the other pastry was great but couldn't manage too much of it. Would certainly come to brunch again."
    Dined on 2/16/2014
  • "Our waiter, Drew, was pleasant, attentive, knowledgeable, and helpful. He made everything else about our experience.at the restaurant excellent! We had a great variety of wonderful foods for brunch."
    Dined on 2/16/2014
  • "NECI on Main is such a treat -- top-notch food and warm service. We were there on Valentine's Day, and the prix fixe menu was delicious from amuse-bouche to dessert. Comparable with fantastic NYC restaurants and yet using the best local purveyors, NECI on Main is a wonderful evening in Montpelier."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "NECL is a "training restaurant" for folks wanting to learn the business of high class dining. As such, they provide central VT with a dining experience that is hard to beat at any price. By local standards, it is a very expensive place to eat, but the quality of food and its preparation is commensurate with that cost. It was a great time for myself and "my valentine" to do something special. We arrived near on time, were immediately seated. Service was prompt and friendly, the multi-course dinner was served in a timely fashion, the Malbec was great. Food was well prepared, and nicely presented. The desert was neat, a little chocolate fondue pot, with all sorts of unusual goodies to dunk in it. We'll be back. :>)"
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "NECI reminded me what good food is. I took my wife there for Valentine's Day and it was excellent. It was a little more expensive than it felt like it should have been, but the food was excellent and the service was as well. I will go back many more times I'm sure."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "It was our 4th anniversary when we ate at neci on main. Not only was the service excellent they made our anniversary very special and memorable! I would highly reccomend this restaurant!!! My husband is in the military and when we got married 4 years ago neci made our wedding cake as well. It was really cool to come back 4 years later and dine with them!"
    Dined on 2/6/2014
  • "We were a large party. Service was a little intrusive and awkward, but attentive. As for the food, some menu items are wonderful; others seem like good ideas but lack in the execution. Ox tail ravioli were tasty but salty and swimming in grease. Faro risotto had a weird balance of over sweet and over bitter. But the atmosphere is very pleasant and conducive to conversation, and the menu has a nice mix. We will definitely be back."
    Dined on 2/4/2014
  • "The fact that students are cooking and serving was amazing. The food was excellent and the service was decent given that it was our server's first night in the front of the house. The best surprise was the bill. Not cheap but certainly 1/3 of what it would be in a comparable restaurant. Wish we lived closer, we would be there all the time!"
    Dined on 1/24/2014
  • "I have been to NECI Main Street many times and have never been disappointed. Their ever-changing menus are filled with amazing tastes and presentations and we have had many "the best evers"!"
    Dined on 1/24/2014
  • "Right in the heart of Montpelier, A gastronomic gem! The New England Culinary Institute is a best choice for any group or couple, always appropriate, warm and inviting, and Great food. Glad we have this Gem to enjoy in our Capital city."
    Dined on 1/22/2014
  • "Booked NECI on Main for a business meeting lunch. High quality service, comfortable tables, good value, and excellent lunch fare earn my excellent ratings across the board."
    Dined on 1/8/2014
  • "Nice menu, nice ambiance, but our server kept rudely interrupting in mid sentence and forgetting to bring things requested. I realize the servers may be students, but the prices are not. Service not up to par."
    Dined on 1/7/2014
  • "My friend lives in Quechee and I live in Burlington, so we met for lunch in Montpelier. What a delightful experience. The folks at NECI were attentive and supportive. the food was amazing....The Parsnip Soup was totally incredible! We weren't rushed and we delighted in the ambiance, the flavors and the attention. Highly recommend."
    Dined on 1/4/2014
  • "As with past visits, our recent dinner at NECI was excellent. One would never know that the food was prepared by students. I think it's as good as any restaurant that we've found in the metro New York area. The one downside was that our server had a very difficult time extracting the cork from our wine bottle and the meal was almost finished by the time we were able to drink it. The exact same thing happened on our previous visit. Perhaps it would help to provide the servers with a more sophisticated cork puller or give them better training. But other than this relatively minor glitch, it was a terrific meal!"
    Dined on 1/3/2014
  • "Slightly more expensive than what I'm used to there. The prices have been going up slightly each menu change. For the size of the appetizers and certain entrees the price is too high to be considered reasonable."
    Dined on 11/27/2013
  • "Nice selection of items. Omelets, waffles and other items to order. Wouldn't mind a wider selection of fresh fruits. Didn't care for the style of home fries (diced up small and possibly deep fried), but I understand the potatoes change from week to week."
    Dined on 11/24/2013
  • "My daughter and I went for a dinner before she moved, but if We had been a little pressed time, we might have been more upset over how long it took to receive our dinner. 45- 60 min wait, the food was awesome just took some time."
    Dined on 11/13/2013
  • "On a visit to Montpelier. I had high expectations for this restaurant, which is probably why I was disappointed. The presentation and the menu was very good, but the food was VERY over seasoned, aka very salty, (both the simple burger my date ordered and the menu items I chose). It might have just been a rookie mistake, and I'm sure others have had much better meals there, so others should give the restaurant the benefit of the doubt."
    Dined on 11/9/2013
  • "Always have had excellent food & service at NECI. Decent beer list (did not peruse the wine list) and all around an excellent experience."
    Dined on 11/8/2013
  • "Service was excellent ; food was very good. It compares favorably with the Québec equivalent. Will recommend to frieds going to Montpelier"
    Dined on 10/29/2013
  • "this is nice place, good food, ambiance, service and price. But you have to be prepared for your waiter to mispronounce minestrone and say things like "I think de jour means something in French". It is clearly a school and not a gourmet restaurant. What is described on the menu is not what is delivered to your table, but it was very good - I would recommend it and I would go again. It's an experience, but you won't regret it. I had a very good duck confit - but on the menu it was a "special chef's duck creation", I was surprised, but not displeased."
    Dined on 10/8/2013
  • "The food was all delicious - as most of your reviews reflect, I'm sure. So I will tell you of my VERY MINOR observation. The small apple tart on the dessert table had absolutely no apple taste. Other than that, it was a delight. The students do very well indeed."
    Dined on 10/27/2013
  • "I've always wanted to try a Culinary Institute for a meal. While the soup course was very good and served promptly, the service and food went down from there. We waited nearly 50 minutes for our entree after our first course, and that only after we finally cornered our wait person and asked if dinner would be served soon! Our food was mediocre at best. The pork was tough and the spaetzle were crisp and almost unedible. We were very disappointed. We didn't even think about ordering desert since it would have probably taken another hour! Too bad."
    Dined on 10/11/2013
  • "Our dinners were delicious, and the service provided by Sarah and Louisa was both helpful and professional. We dined at the institute on a Wednesday evening which happened to be $5 wine night. Very enjoyable. Thanks and continue the great work educating your students."
    Dined on 10/23/2013
  • "Made reservations very quickly (Hours ahead of time) to ensure they would have space for my party of 10. They were very accommodating, the head server was knowledgeable about both the menu and beverage menu. The student waiters did a great job running food and assisting Anthony. He is one of the best waiters NECI has and I have always had great service from him. The food came out timely, hot, and tasty. One guest had a problem with a dish, it was replaced and dealt with swiftly and professionally. Great job NECI"
    Dined on 10/22/2013
  • "Excellent experience, from the quality of the food at a reasonable price to the service"
    Dined on 10/19/2013
  • "This is one of my go to places in Montpelier. Always enjoyable, both upstairs and downstairs."
    Dined on 10/17/2013
  • "We were visiting Montpelier for the day and wanted to try the NECI for lunch. We were favorably surprised with the food and very friendly service. As starter, we split the Autumn salad, which was delicious. The main course I selected, pork medallion, was perfectly cooked. The only problem was that the espresso we ordered after dinner missed the mark. It was more a normal, but small coffee than an espresso. A second try didn't solve the problem, so it probably was the machine. The waiter was very friendly and immediately offered to take the espresso's off our bill. All together a very good lunch experience. Highly recommended."
    Dined on 10/18/2013
  • "Service was good, but two meat dishes were cold, fish dry. Kitchen sent out a substitute lamb dish to compensate, which was appreciated. Risotto was tasty. Wine list affordable."
    Dined on 10/18/2013
  • "Whether dropping by or requesting a special dinner, this restaurant and its' staff will serve a mouth-watering meal in style. Dessert is a must!"
    Dined on 9/27/2013
  • "We went here for lunch, and were sadly disappointed by the very dry, oily beef stew. None of the food was anything special, and the servers just didn't seem to really care. Since this is a culinary school, I kind of expected that there would be a little enthusiasm."
    Dined on 10/12/2013
  • "4 of us dined there. 2 of us ordered the pork, one pot roast and a mushroom risotto. The person who ordered the risotto wanted to ask where the rest of the meal was when the server asked, "can I get you anything else". The pot roast was a normal portion ($17). The pork could have used more späetzle. The risotto was the size of a tuna can... that was it fo $18.75. The food was very tasty, but if you don't order salad and dessert you'll leave there hungry. If you do order salad and dessert you'll leave there poor. We wanted to support NECI and have an experience."
    Dined on 10/12/2013
  • "We were disappointed in our experience at NECI on Main after driving an hour to eat there. I admit we had high expectations for our visit, but our Tuesday evening dinner fell far short. We were seated outside in a very cramped space, where guests could not easily exit and the servers had a terrible time politely moving between tables. Our server was very sweet but clearly in training and entirely forgetful. The food was inconsistent. Prices were very reasonable. We would not eat at NECI on Main again."
    Dined on 10/1/2013