Best of the Vineyard 2016 Food and Drink

The votes are in, the ballots have been counted. And the winners are...

Best Bakery: Back Door Donuts/Martha’s Vineyard Gourmet Café & Bakery

5 Post Office Square, Oak Bluffs, 508-627-3688,

Runner-up: Scottish Bakehouse

977 State Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-6633,

Life is too short to eat bad donuts, which is why we line up at the back door of Martha’s Vineyard Gourmet Café & Bakery to devour the very best sugar-dusted, lightly frosted, freshly baked spheres of deliciousness that the Island has to offer. In Vineyard Haven, the Bakehouse serves up Scottish shortbread, gluten-free brownies, almond croissants, and lemon drop cookies so good you’ll want to skip the delicious lunch and dinner food they also serve and head straight to dessert.

Best Bar/Pub: Offshore Ale Co.

30 Kennebec Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-2626,

Runner-up: Lookout Tavern

8 Seaview Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-696-9844,

Are you a Hop Goddess, Beach Road Nut Brown Ale, or Lazy Frog IPA? At Islandwide favorite Offshore Ale, everyone knows your name, and, just as important, you know all the names of the beers written on the chalkboard. If you can’t get enough of Offshore’s house-made microbrews by the pint, try the fried fish, oysters, and calamari, which are made with amber
ale. At Lookout Tavern, the best seat has an ocean view and an icy brew.

Best Breakfast Sandwich: Scottish Bakehouse

977 State Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-6633,

Runner-up: 7a Foods

1045 State Road, West Tisbury, 508-693-4636,

Have it your way, or just go for the works with Scottish Bakehouse’s take on the classic egg sandwich: spinach, tomato, red onion, cheese, two eggs, and bacon, ham, sausage, linguica or fakin’ bacon on an English muffin. Wrapped in a hot tin foil bundle, it’s the best way to start the day. 7a’s egg and cheese on a house-made cheddar-jalapeño biscuit will wake up any hungry breakfast lover.

Best Breakfast: ArtCliff Diner

39 Beach Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-1224

Runner-up: The Black Dog Tavern

20 Beach Road Extension, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-9223,

It’s worth the wait for a spot at ArtCliff Diner. And yes, there’s always a wait, because who wouldn’t want to queue up for the Smokin’ in the Shower (a toasted bagel with smoked salmon, red onion, tomato, cream cheese, capers, and lemon) or the Drunken Sailor Pancakes (pecan pancakes with real rum raisins)? Or the crêpes. Or the omelets. Or the…you get the idea: it’s all good. Down the road next to the Steamship Authority, the Black Dog serves up whimsically named breakfast favorites with a view that’s hard to beat.

Elizabeth Cecil

Best Burger: Atria

137 Main Street, Edgartown, 508-627-5850,

Runner-up: Fat Ronnie’s Burger Bar

7 Circuit Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 774-563-9311

We’re flipping out over Atria’s extensive burger menu, which features both classic beef and beyond-the-beef options, like a curried turkey burger with green apple chutney or an all-veggie option called the PETA. No matter which route you go, each burger is trimmed with savory extras like sambal aioli, eggplant relish, Béarnaise sauce, or a fried egg. Want something a little more casual? Head to Fat Ronnie’s Burger Bar in Oak Bluffs. Owner Reynaldo Faust claims to have eaten more than 1,000 burgers himself.

Best Caterer: Kitchen Porch

14 A Street, Edgartown, 508-645-5000,

Runner-up: V. Jaime Hamlin and Sons Catering & Party Design


Jan Buhrman of Kitchen Porch caters to your every culinary fancy, from boxed lunches and wedding dinners to culinary classes and lectures. Clients rave about her vast food knowledge and creative menus. Jaime Hamlin knows how to throw a lavish party centered around beautifully plated, elegant cuisine.

Best Chowder: Martha’s Vineyard Chowder Company

9 Oak Bluffs Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-696-3000,

Runner-up: The Net Result

Tisbury Marketplace, 79 Beach Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-6071,

Bagged chowder? Not here, not ever. It should come as no surprise that Martha’s Vineyard Chowder Company’s award-winning dish is…well, chowder. It’s made from scratch daily, and has the perfect blend of qauhaugs and other fixings to hit the spot. At the Net Result, the thick and creamy chowder is so good you’ll want to purchase two bowls: one to eat right away and another for when you return home.

Megan Adventure Pedersen and Noel Hogan, ready to serve you at double winner 7a Foods.
Elizabeth Cecil

Best Picnic Food: 7a Foods

1045 State Road, West Tisbury, 508-693-4636,

Runner-up (tie): Humphreys Bakery

Woodland Center, 455 State Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-6518,

Black Sheep

18 North Summer Street, Edgartown, 774-549-9118,

House-smoked pulled pork, coleslaw, and mayo on a brioche bun says summer all the way. For something lighter, try the Roasted Beet Wrap with goat cheese, spinach, Marcona almonds, and balsamic. Or the Liz Lemon, a customer favorite. Add a muffin or brownie and a cold drink and you’re picnic ready. Humphreys’ huge sandwiches and family-friendly prices make for a good choice to fuel a big day at the beach or on the water.

Best Clambake: Bill Smith’s Martha’s Vineyard Clambake Co.


Runner-up: Larsen’s Fish Market

56 Basin Road, Chilmark, 508-645-2680,

Whether you’re looking to host a small dinner party or a formal wedding, Bill Smith’s Clambake Company has you covered from bibs to lobster and everything in between. At Larsen’s Fish Market you can create a tailored seafood buffet by choosing just-off-the-boat specialties from the market or kitchen, and enjoy them on the Menemsha docks.

Best Cocktails: Alchemy

71 Main Street, Edgartown, 508-627-9999,

Runner-up: Nancy’s Snack Bar/Donovan’s Reef

29 Lake Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-0006,

Alchemy takes its cocktails seriously. Take The Conundrum, made with Sauza Hornitos tequila, muddled orange, black cherries, fresh ginger, and fruit juices topped with a salted rim. The only conundrum: how many Conundrums is too many? For a different vibe, visit Donovan’s Reef, where smooth frozen cocktails are served with a side of reggae on the outdoor deck at Nancy’s. The most popular drink is called the Dirty Banana. Enough said.

Best Coffee: Mocha Mott’s

10 Circuit Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-696-1922
15 Main Street, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-3155,

Runner-up: Espresso Love

17 Church Street, Edgartown, 508-627-9211,

If you’re in need of a strong kick in the morning, look no further than Mocha Mott’s. With locations in Oak Bluffs and Vineyard Haven, you’re never far away from getting that perfect cup of coffee you so desperately crave. Espresso Love in Edgartown knows how to put a caffeinated spring in their patrons’ steps.

Best Family Dining: Offshore Ale Co.

30 Kennebec Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-2626,

Runner-up: Giordano’s Restaurant

18 Lake Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-0184,

If Offshore Ale’s goal is delicious food that the whole family can enjoy in a fun, laid-back, peanut-shells-on-the-floor kind of atmosphere, they are succeeding. Giordano’s has been serving homemade classics to Islanders and visitors alike for more than eighty-five years.

Best Farm Market or Stand: Morning Glory Farm

290 Edgartown-West Tisbury Road, Edgartown, 508-627-9003,

Runner-up: The West Tisbury Farmers’ Market

The Grange Hall, 1065 State Road, West Tisbury,

Family-run Morning Glory Farm is home to the best variety of produce and provisions on the Island, making it the heart beet of Vineyard farm stands. For a vibrant Saturday (or Wednesday) morning, head over to the West Tisbury Farmers’ Market to meet your farmer and check out the leanest and greenest of the Island.      

Best Fine Dining: State Road Restaurant

688 State Road, West Tisbury, 508-693-8582,

Runner-up: l’etoile
Louis Larsen didn’t need to get his claws out to sweep three categories for the Net Result, but we let him do it anyway.
Elizabeth Cecil

22 North Water Street, Edgartown, 508-627-5187,

There’s no coat check or white tablecloths at State Road in West Tisbury, but this farm-to-fork restaurant does have a lot to offer: local cheeses, house-cured meat, memorable entrées, and knowledgeable servers who are able to pair wine with absolutely anything. (Dark chocolate mousse and Zinfandel? Don’t mind if we do!) Runner-up l’etoile in downtown Edgartown charms us with its tented outdoor patio and exquisite chef’s tasting menu.

Best Fish and Chips: The Net Result

Tisbury Marketplace, 79 Beach Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-6071,

Runner-up: The Newes from America Pub

23 Kelley Street, Edgartown, 508-627-4397,

Light and crispy, salty and fresh. You can find fish and chips all over the Island, but no one does it quite like the Net Result. For those who prefer a thicker crunch, stop by the Newes from America for this British classic and grab yourself a pint.

Best Fish Market: The Net Result

Tisbury Marketplace, 79 Beach Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-6071,

Runner-up: Larsen’s Fish Market

56 Basin Road, Chilmark, 508-645-2680,

The name says it all: for the best catch on the Vineyard throughout the year, the Net Result will hook, line, and sink the rest. For equally knowledgeable staff and the freshest fish around, head up to Larsen’s, where Betsy and her crew rule the Menemsha docks.

Best French Fries: Atria

137 Main Street, Edgartown, 508-627-5850,

Runner-up: Slice of Life

50 Circuit Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-3838,

Atria takes comfort food to the next level with its crisp truffle Parmesan French fries. The serving is big enough to share, but you might not want to. Slice of Life prepares French fries three delicious ways: classic, truffle Parmesan, or sweet potato. No matter which you choose, you can’t lose.

Best Grocery Store: Cronig’s Markets

357 State Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-4457
469 State Road, West Tisbury, 508-693-2234,

Runner-up: Reliable Market
Ready to place your order? She, and everyone else, recommends the Bite’s fried clams.
Elizabeth Cecil

36 Circuit Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-1102,

Looking for vegan cheese, lemongrass, or ingredients to make a killer brownie sundae? Cronig’s has got it all. Visit the website to create a shopping list in advance. Grilling out? At runner-up Reliable Market in Oak Bluffs, owner Bob Pacheco will set you up with burgers and store-made sausages for the ultimate barbecue. 

Best Fried Clams: The Bite

29 Basin Road, Chilmark, 508-645-9239

Runner-up: Giordano’s Restaurant

18 Lake Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-0184,

Fried clams are a staple in any New England beach town, but the Bite truly serves them right: whole bellies in greasy paper boxes with a side of tartar. No frills and totally delicious. Down-Island, Giordano’s serves them lightly breaded and perfectly crisp.

Best Ice Cream Shop: Ben & Bill’s Chocolate Emporium

20A Circuit Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-696-0008,

Runner-up: Mad Martha’s

48 Main Street, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-5883
12 Circuit Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-9151
7 North Water Street, Edgartown, 508-627-8761

With candy lining the walls and an ice cream chest taking up half the store, Ben & Bill’s Chocolate Emporium is like a certain fictional chocolate factory, without the moral lessons – unless the moral is that two scoops are better than one. At Mad Martha’s, morals get even looser as you dip your spoon into Sinful Chocolate, a decadent flavor featuring Heath bars.

Best Island-Made Candy/Chocolate: Chilmark Chocolates

19 State Road, Chilmark, 508-645-3013

Runner-up: Murdick’s Fudge

21 North Water Street, Edgartown, 508-627-8047
5 Circuit Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-2335
Corner of Union and Main Street, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-7344,

Grab a personal bag or box (okay, share if you must), fill it with Beetlebung Bars, Tashmoo Truffles, and Cranberry Clusters, and Chilmark Chocolates will leave you tongue-tied. For your aching sweet tooth, Murdick’s Fudge does the trick with its flavorful, fabulous fudge. 

Best Lobster Roll: Grace Episcopal Church

Woodlawn Avenue and William Street, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-0332. (Fridays, 4:00–7:30 p.m. from May to September)

Runner-up: Lookout Tavern

8 Seaview Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-696-9844,

The secret’s in the pepper – white pepper that is. Maybe it’s because this roll calls for only three ingredients, or perhaps it’s because of the lovely group of volunteers serving them up, but Grace Church knows how to claw (and tail) its way into summer hearts. The Lookout’s lobster rolls are best enjoyed while enjoying the latest game.

Best Lunch: Little House Cafe

339 State Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-687-9794,

Runner-up: 7a Foods

1045 State Road, West Tisbury, 508-693-4636,

It doesn’t matter if you’re a carnivore, omnivore, or herbivore – Little House Cafe has the perfect lunch for you. Sandwiches, specials, and salads feature international flavors with classic American twists – think: a grilled cheese and slaw sandwich. When the weather’s nice, bring the food to the picnic tables on the lawn. 7a is a grab-and-go delight featuring sandwiches and soups.

Best Outdoor Dining: Nancy’s Snack Bar

29 Lake Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-0006,

Runner-up: Aquinnah Shop Restaurant

27 Aquinnah Circle, Aquinnah, 508-645-3867,

Nothing says summer like sitting on the deck at Nancy’s, watching the action unfold on the Oak Bluffs harbor while enjoying a lunch of fish and chips. At dinner, enjoy the seafood casserole, made with baked shrimp, scallops, swordfish, and lobster. Or the grilled steak tips, which are marinated for two days and topped with caramelized onions and a horseradish dipping sauce. Then again, you can’t go wrong with a burger. Up-Island, meals at the Aquinnah Shop come with breathtaking views of the Gay Head Cliffs.

Best Package Store: Our Market

1 East Chop Drive, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-3000,

Runner-up: Jim’s Package Store & Island Market

27 Lake Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-0236,

The crew at Our Market knows their booze, from wine to pair with pizza to specialty beers to wash down clams. Almost anything you need you can find in stock, plus a bunch of things you don’t need but would really like to try. In addition to beer, wine, and liquor, Jim’s features a walk-in cigar humidor, which contains hundreds of different types of cigars, from the cheap to the exquisite.

Best Pizza: Giordano’s Restaurant

18 Lake Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-0184,

Runner-up: Rocco’s Pizzeria

Tisbury Marketplace, 79 Beach Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-1125,

Giordano’s (known to many simply as Gio’s) has been serving Italian favorites like eggplant Parmesan, seafood alfredo, and chicken cacciatore since 1930. But it’s the hand-tossed, authentic Neapolitan-style pizza that keeps people coming back again and again. Try the Vineyard Special: extra cheese, onion, peppers, linguica, mushrooms, and genoa salami. Or grab a slice and a soda and sit on the bench outside. Rocco’s fans go crazy for the meat lover’s, margherita, and white Italian pies, as well as the daily specials. Try the gluten-free crust as well.

Best Sandwich: 7a Foods

1045 State Road, West Tisbury, 508-693-4636,

Runner-up: Humphreys Bakery

Woodland Center, 455 State Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-6518,

Everyone loves Tina Fey, and it seems everyone loves the sandwich named for her character on 30 Rock, too. With indulgent layers of pastrami, turkey, Swiss, coleslaw, Russian dressing, and potato chips on rye, the Liz Lemon is hands-down the star of 7a’s stellar sandwich lineup. But it has stiff competition: like the pulled pork on brioche, or the meatball sub made with beef, pork, ricotta, and Parmesan. Since 1949, Humphreys has been serving massive sandwiches piled high on homemade bread. Try the classic Italian or the hot pressed Cuban.

Best Seafood Restaurant: The Net Result

Tisbury Marketplace, 79 Beach Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-6071,

Runner-up: Home Port Restaurant

512 North Road, Chilmark, 508-645-2679,

The Net Result doesn’t do table service, doesn’t serve beer or wine, and the only seating to speak of is a bunch of picnic tables in the parking lot. And yet, time and time again it’s awarded the Best Seafood Restaurant. This speaks volumes to the quality of the seafood – steamed lobster, fried clams, chowder, and sushi. At the Home Port, diners enjoy spectacular sunsets along with dinner and BYOB drink service.

Best Sushi: Lookout Tavern

8 Seaview Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-696-9844,

Runner-up: The Net Result

Tisbury Marketplace, 79 Beach Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-6071,

At the Lookout Tavern, grab a seat overlooking Nantucket Sound and dive into sushi heaven. There is literally something for everyone. Keeping it low-key? Try a salmon roll. A little more adventurous? Try the Super Roll. (It’s got fried banana!) The Net Result has on-the-go sushi, perfect for snacking on the ferry.

Best Takeout: Bangkok Thai Cuisine

67 Circuit Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-696-6322

Runner-up: 7a Foods

1045 State Road, West Tisbury, 508-693-4636,

Bangkok Thai satiates Islanders’ takeout cravings year round, and it’s easy to see why. The menu has all the typical favorites, from pad Thai to red, green, and yellow curries. But don’t miss out on house specials like the hot pot mix: seafood in hot and sour soup with lemongrass, lime juice, fresh mushrooms, tomato, and basil. 7a appears in a number of Best of the Vineyard categories for its superb sandwiches, soups, and baked goods, all made to go.

Best Vegetarian Meal: Little House Cafe

339 State Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-687-9794,

Runner-up: Scottish Bakehouse

977 State Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-693-6633,

Little House Cafe has so many delicious vegetarian options that it’s hard to decide which one to order on any given visit. The French Lentil Salad with raisins, sweet red pepper, carrots, walnuts, and feta cheese croutons on greens with maple balsamic vinaigrette? Or the Grilled Cheese and Slaw Sandwich with pepper jack and tangy red cabbage on multigrain bread? No, wait, the Classic Falafel. Scottish Bakehouse’s wholesome veggie entrées include Kale, Sweet Potato Mash and Black Beans, and Coconut Tofu with organic red rice and broccoli, as well as soups and sandwiches.

Best Wings: Coop deVille

Dockside Marketplace, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-3420,

Runner-up: Offshore Ale Co.

30 Kennebec Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-2626,

What makes a chicken wing soar? Maybe it’s the ten different flavors at Coop deVille, where anything from mild to voodoo can make your heart fly away. Or perhaps you prefer the classic Buffalo style at Offshore Ale, where eating five makes you wish you had another five more to go.

Best Year-Round Restaurant: Offshore Ale Co.

30 Kennebec Avenue, Oak Bluffs, 508-693-2626,

Runner-up: Little House Cafe

339 State Road, Vineyard Haven, 508-687-9794,

Offshore Ale is one of those cozy, comfortably dim eateries with something for everyone. You can enjoy the local oysters, house-brewed beer, and wood-fired pizzas for lunch or dinner every day, year round. Little House is Vineyard Haven’s relaxed, casual breakfast and lunch spot by day, turned quaint date-night spot in the evening. The menu ranges from tacos to Thai curry, with everything executed deliciously.