by Betsy Rich
You travel. Business or pleasure. Martha’s Vineyard or wherever. What do you need to know every time? Where to EAT!
Every destination has a multitude of choices appealing to location, comfort, taste and/or your pocketbook. On Martha’s Vineyard, the Martha’s Vineyard Chowder Company dominates this hit list.
The Martha’s Vineyard Chowder Company is located across from the Flying Horses Carousel, in Oak Bluffs, about a 3-minute walk from where we dock. When I was there a couple of weeks ago, it was a hot, humid, sunny summer day with lots of people about on foot, in vehicles, on bikes and mopeds. Walking in was a bit of a shock to my system. It was cool and dark inside, and quiet. It was a complete 360 of what was going on outside. Interestingly enough, the effect of the atmosphere was calming and comforting. As my friends and I became aware of the change, one said, “You need to write about THAT in your blog post. I feel so much better than I did outside!”
Let’s talk about why we’re here. The food. Namely, the chowder. Award winning for a reason. The ingredients are finely chopped, which I love. I do not love chewing on chewy clams (YUCK!) or having to choke them down whole (BLECH!). The broth is not thick and pasty, nor is it thin and watery. It’s the happy medium of consistency with the sweet, sweet overtones of butter (YUM!). I have tried other award winning chowders but, in my humble opinion, theirs is truly the best.
Besides chowder, they have a menu that appeals to a variety of tastes (and budgets). We were all eating light that day (well, to balance out the chowder) and ordered: arugula salad; fresh mozzarella, crispy eggplant and tomato salad; and sushi grade tuna tartare. All three lunches were incredibly fresh and beautifully presented. We all received clean plate awards by the manager, Rachid. He was great, making us feel very welcome and making sure we had everything we needed. You know – like dessert. We cleaned that plate too 🙂
On a side note, I went to the Chowder Company last October with my son, for dinner. I ordered scallops, which were accompanied by a risotto with fresh corn. Hands down, it was one of the top three dinners I’ve had in my lifetime. Since then, every scallop entree I’ve tried has paled in comparison, never coming close to the freshness and sweetness of that dinner. I dream about that dinner, a lot.
When I travel, I am partial to local: owned and operated, the fare and the recommendation. The Chowder Company does this for me. The owner, JB, is extremely involved in his community, his staff, his patrons, his offerings (he owns multiple restaurants on the Vineyard). I am impressed by this involvement and his enthusiasm, and his support and partnerships with Hy-Line.
#eatlocal #drinklocal #eatmv
Want to check this place out? Enter to win our social media contest and select the Martha’s Vineyard Getaway, which includes a $75 gift certificate to the Martha’s Vineyard Chowder Company!