As reviewed by: Maddie Kennedy
The Old North End of Burlington has a tremendous amount of spirit.
When visiting the 'hood you’ll come across multi-colored houses, specialty markets, and some seriously beautiful murals. And if you're lucky you'll visit the gem that is Drifters. A tapas style restaurant that is affordable, local, and welcoming (hence the name), Drifters has something for just about anyone. They serve classics like ground beef sliders (hello, fresh VT RAISED BEEF!!) but also offer a more unusual selection for your vegan friends, like their sweet and sticky seitan skewers. The ATE02 team had the chance to visit Drifters a few weeks back and here is the LOW DOWN.
We loved the Root vegetable fries, they were crisp but not super greasy and they came with a delicious dip that really brought some flavor the the app. The skewers really live up to their name, SUPER flavorful and tangy also the perfect amount of food. Even if you aren’t plant based these are definitely worth your time. LASTLY, but certainly not least. The Duck confit Tacos, extremely tender meat combined with pickled cabbage. These tacos were so well crafted, and deliciously flavored 10/10.
Entering Drifters you immediately get smacked with the aroma of Asian inspired food and a hint of freshly baked bread ...
(OK amazing combo). Drifters is cozy AF, there isn't a ton of seating but the atmosphere makes waiting for a seat extremely tolerable. You immeditely feel at home here, everyone is super friendly, the dim lighting creates a cozy and comfortable space, and the FOOD is so so tasty. In addition to all of these wonderful things, Drifters is tapas style which meant we could try A LOT of what their menu offer.
The menu is broken down into four different sections, $5 plates, $8 plates, $10 plates, and $12 plates. We wanted to try an array of things on their menu, because like we mentioned before there is a ton to choose from. Here's what we ordered.
ATE02's DRIFTERS ORDER:
The Root Vegetable Fries (VEGAN)
Garbanzo and Golden Beet Hummus Plate
Baked Brie Crostinis
Sweet and Sticky Seitan Skewers (VEGAN)
Duck Confit Tacos
Let me tell you, a place like Drifters is hard to find. Not many restaurants, especially those that are fast/casual have OPTIONS. At this dinner we had meat eaters, vegetarians, dairy allergies, anti-carb, and everything in between but let me tell you, EVERYONE was so pleased by their meal, which is rare when going out with a large group. In addition to this, the fact that Drifters is tapas style made it such a fun dining experience. Everyone was trying everything and it really gives you a chance to try much of what this Old North End has to offer. SO folks, whether you're visiting Burlington or a permanent resident, Drifters in the Old North End is worth your while. With the choice of trying something brand new or an old classic we can almost guarantee you won't be disappointed either way. We can’t wait to get back there either, their pork belly flatbread are an absolute must for next time.