For my birthday dinner this year, my boy took me to The Bearded Frog in Shelburne, VT. For starters, we ordered the graham cracker crusted calamari, which comes on a bed of greens and drizzled with two delicious sauces: a “lime & chive emulsion” and a dark, mysterious second sauce ($8, and 8 well-spent dollars at that). My boy had the perfectly-cooked pork chop, marinated in buttermilk, the served atop two large cheddar and bacon hashbrowns and topped with “apple & orange marmalade” ($20). I opted for the roasted duck breast, which is served with a mushroom bread pudding (a schmancier way to get good old stuffing on the plate — the size of the bread pudding was a little too large in my opinion, but nonetheless decadent), haricot vert (skinny green beans) and a cherry purée ($23). Interestingly enough, I had ordered a glass of tempranillo (Spanish red wine — $10 for the glass) which had a hint of cherries. The wine went perfectly with my food. =) To round out the meal, my boy ordered a slice of the flourless chocolate cake ($7 and accompanied by a delicious strawberry sauce and a scoop of vanilla ice cream) and I ordered the pumpkin pie tart (also $7, topped with cranberry sorbet and served over a swirl of wine reduction). All in all, the service left a little to be desired (either they were a bit understaffed, or we got the young-adult treatment) and there was more time between courses than we had hoped. However, the deliciousness of the food made up for it.