Martha’s Vineyard is all about farm-fresh ingredients and, of course, plenty of seafood.
Black Dog Tavern: A visit to the Vineyard isn’t complete without a stop at this waterfront landmark, mere steps from the main ferry. The rough-hewn interior is decorated with boat tackle and other seafaring objects, but grab a seat at an outdoor picnic table—if one is free. What to order? A lump crab cake sandwich and a bowl of quahog chowder. Vineyard Haven. $$
Hooked: Opened last year, the sibling to popular island spot Atria quickly became the place for in-the-know locals. Its buck-a-shuck oyster happy hour (in July and August) is a perfect prelude to dinner. Look for seafood classics (grilled salmon; soft-shell crab) and offbeat items such as Asian-style baby back ribs. Oak Bluffs. $$
State Road: Many of the ingredients here are picked from the restaurant’s own gardens. Dig into lemon-ricotta pancakes or the locavore burger, with house-made garlic dill pickles, in a wood-beam dining room outfitted with American antiques. West Tisbury. $$$
Sweet Life Café: An alum of New York City’s Aureole, chef Carlos Montoya turns out Frenchified American classics at this romantic Victorian town house—a favorite of the Obamas. Start with a bottle of Chardonnay from the cellar (it’s one of the island’s largest), then try the grilled rib eye with Parmesan velouté followed by a strawberry terrine. $$$
Faith’s Seafood Shack: The sashimi and lobster rolls alone are worth the trek to this no-frills, cliffside haunt near the Gay Head Lighthouse, complete with knockout ocean views. Aquinnah. $$
Three places to go after dark.
At the bi-level Alchemy, the steak frites and fried risotto balls don’t distract from the tropical drinks such as tangy mojitos and gin-and-juices. Edgartown; 508/627-9999.
Peanut shells blanket the floor at the laid-back Offshore Ale Co., a neighborhood pub that stays packed until the wee hours. Try the Offshore Amber Ale—it’s brewed on site. Oak Bluffs.
A snug, railroad-style lounge, Sidecar Café & Bar draws crowds with its innovative cocktails, including the Brown Chicken, Brown Cow, made with Domaine de Canton ginger liqueur, Wild Turkey American Honey liqueur, and ginger ale. Oak Bluffs.
Restaurant Pricing Key
$ Less than $25
$$ $25 to $75
$$$ $75 to $150
$$$$ More than $150