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This Dartmouth Grad Turned Her Passion Into A Career

Allie Levy

Dartmouth English major Allie Levy wandered a number of paths in editorial and book publishing, with stops in Denver and New York City, before coming home to her alma mater in Hanover, New Hampshire, where she now owns and runs Still North Books & Bar.

The Detroit area native fell in love with the Upper Valley of New Hampshire, both the natural beauty of the region and the community, while an undergraduate. Though doors opened in the New York publishing universe, she realized it was bookselling that inspired her. When the Dartmouth Bookstore closed, Levy saw her moment and grabbed it.

Must-know breakfast spot in town? And your go-to dish on the menu?
Is it horrible to say my own bookstore? No? Good. After several years I’m still a little obsessed with our breakfast sandwiches. The best one is named after my cat.

Best book to bring along for dining solo?
Anything by Lauren Groff. Best savored like a leisurely meal, one bite at a time. I have very fond memories of reading Florida at bars, bistros, cafes and sushi spots all over Brooklyn.

Local writer everyone must discover?
Makenna Goodman. I am obsessed with her book about obsession (and other things), The Shame.

Favorite chef memoir or cookbook? Oooh, this one is hard. I love to cook, but my partner is constantly giving me a hard time for being incapable of following a recipe. So I guess in that regard a chef memoir is the logical choice, but I’ve truthfully never read one. So I’m breaking the rules and recommending a food novel,¬†Sweetbitter.

Signature cocktail to accompany the consumption of literature?
Lavender Old Fashioned.

Jodi Picoult wanders into your shop. Where would you send her for dinner? Hi Jodi! There’s a new restaurant/bar/venue located right beneath Still North called Sawtooth Kitchen and their food is fantastic!

Dartmouth grad Dr. Seuss (Theodor Suess Geisel) strolls in a moment later. Where would you send him???
Chef Brad’s Crazyside¬†Cafe in Quechee, VT. I’ve never been (not for lack of wanting to!), but it looks/sounds a little bit like a fanciful food truck out of a Dr. Seuss book, so I think he’d enjoy it.

Favorite book for a 3-hour airport delay?
The book I buy at the airport ‚ÄĒ instead of pulling out one of the five that are probably in my carry-on. I picked up a copy of The Painter¬†by Peter Heller at the Denver airport in 2015 on a whim and he quickly became one of my favorite authors.

The one dining experience in the Upper Valley area that no one should miss?
Simon Pearce. You must go downstairs before and/or after to watch the glassblowers. It’s mesmerizing.

If you could dine with any author, living or dead, who would that be?
Louise Erdrich. I fell in love with her writing after reading the short story “Fleur” (excerpted from her novel¬†Tracks) in my Norton Anthology in 10th grade, and I am in awe of her work to this day. We share an alma mater and we both own bookstores, so I think we’d have a lot to talk about.

Still North Books & Bar is located at 3 Allen Street in Hanover, NH. Have a favorite hometown bookseller? Email ken@beyondish.com and let us know who we should profile next.

AUTHOR

Ken Carlton

Ken is the author of FOOD FOR MARRIAGE and co-author of THE HUNGER. His screen credits include a screenplay with the folks who brought you "Babette's Feast." He is an inveterate midnight chef with a penchant for all things tartare.

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