Tom’s Loft Tavern Proves That You Should Not Judge a Book by its Cover


Tom’s Loft Tavern Proves That You Should Not Judge a Book by its Cover

As you pull into the parking lot at the base of Okemo Mountain, you cannot help but notice the big red barn. It may look a little dilapidated, like it’s leaning a bit, maybe more depending on the time of day and if you’ve already had a few. The sign on the side of the building reads “Home of warm beer, lousy food, and grumpy owner,” making you wonder why anyone would ever go there. However, despite these obvious detractors, going there is an absolute must. This barn, Tom’s Loft Tavern, named after said grumpy owner is hands down one of the best après-ski bars in the entire country.

One Out of Three Ain’t Bad

Quite frankly, only one of those adjectives from the sign is questionably true. The other two, not so much. The beer is far from warm and they have an outstanding selection of regional craft beers to choose from. The food is in no way lousy. It’s delicious and you better arrive hungry. The portions are huge and priced rather reasonably for the amount that you get.

With a menu filled with après-ski comfort food, it can be really tough to choose and anything, including the nachos and the burger, are sure to satiate you. However, their award winning wings are a must. Plump, juicy and perfectly sauced for optimal taste bud tantalizing, they will not disappoint. And then there’s Tom, the so called Grumpy Owner. He’s more of an acquired taste, like say…a sour beer. Actually, Tom is quite amusing, especially if you catch him on a good day when he is telling stories that are filled with colorful language. In today’s time, characters like him are tough to come by and Tom truly makes the place go.

A True Throwback Bar

In an age of commercialization and multi-resort passes, Tom’s Loft remains as is, making it a special après-ski bar. It’s a true throwback to a time when dive bars at ski resorts were the norm. The atmosphere is boisterously fun and Tom is not the only character in there. The place is filled with them. So be sure to pay that shaky red barn in the parking lot at Okemo a visit, especially on a Saturday during après-ski because that is where you will find the true soul of Okemo.

Rich Stoner

Rich Stoner is the founder of the après-ski lifestyle clothing and media brand, All About Après. No stranger to the ski and après-ski scene, Rich has been a long time contributor for many publications on topics like skiing, gear, beer and food. However, his passion is on the slopes and enjoying good times with good people. You can find him perfecting his craft carving turns and drinking beers in the Green Mountains of Vermont. @allaboutapres