Middlebury’s Haymaker Bun Company bakery nominated for James Beard Award


Haymaker Bun Company of Middlebury has been nominated for a prestigious James Beard Award for outstanding bakery.

“This is such an honor,” said owner Caroline Corrente. “I religiously follow James Beard Awards. I’m in complete shock.”

Corrente said she learned the news from a friend who sent her a text.

This is the first year that the James Beard Awards have had a separate category for bakeries.

Corrente said she started Haymaker from her home kitchen in 2017. A trained pastry chef, she was home on maternity leave, trying to figure out her next professional step. She came up with the idea of doing specialty brioche buns — sweet ones, savory ones, chocolate ones. Her specialty is her cinnamon bun.

In 2018, she and her husband had the opportunity to move into a space in downtown Middlebury with a deck that overlooks Otter Creek. Their cafe serves breakfast and lunch.

“‘I’m super proud of my team,” Corrente said. “It’s been a really hard past few years for everyone in my industry, between the pandemic and labor shortages and rising food costs. We work really hard and we wake up really early.”

Burlington’s Foam Brewers has been nominated for the outstanding wine and other beverages program. Its beers on tap range from Pavement India Pale Ale to Pagan Science American Wild Ale, aged on peaches.

“It’s a pretty nice surprise,” said Bob Grim, Foam’s co-founder and head brewer. Grim said he found out when he received an email from another Vermont brewer.

Grim said he sees the nomination as recognition for Foam’s work to support Vermont agriculture, a part of the brewery’s ethos since its start.

“When we opened, we incorporated that into who we were,” said Grim. “We wanted to work with the people in our community.”

Last year, Nisachon “Rung” Morgan, owner of the Thai restaurant Saap in Randolph, took home the award for best chef in the Northeast.

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