Martha's Vineyard -- Gardens, Fish, Markets
Many Vineyard chefs have perfected the art of blending island ingredients and culinary traditions with contemporary haute-cuisine techniques. “People love ordering a fish dinner that was swimming in the water that morning,” says Doug Hewson, chef and owner of Mediterranean, with a view over Sylvia State Beach to Nantucket Sound beyond. “Especially when the fish is paired with island vegetables.” Hewson prepares rustic, flavorful meals, such as pesto-crusted bluefish with home-grown tomato vinaigrette, and pan-seared almond-coated fluke with a creamy fresh-leek fondue. “Summer fluke is the sweetest,” he says.
Michael Brisson, chef and owner of L’Étoile in downtown Edgartown, offers elegant dining featuring native seafood, lamb, and produce, including dishes such as grilled striped bass with Morning Glory Farm vegetable ratatouille and fava-bean pesto, and a classic lobster etuvee with a serving of more provincial–but no less delicious–clam fritters. “Formal dining should be celebratory as well as appetizing,” Brisson notes.
Sometimes, however, simplest is best: like sampling the raw bar at Coop de Ville while sitting outdoors overlooking Oak Bluffs Harbor, as you sip cold beer and watch the boats and the water going by. Life doesn’t get much better than that.
Read more: Cookbooks from Martha’s Vineyard