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Although the name Martha’s Vineyard may be a misnomer as far as wine production is concerned, the Island more than makes up for it in the culinary category, with great local seafood, as well as farm-raised meats and produce.
These attributes make MV an excellent place to experience great food, fine wines, and the work of chefs who combine these ingredients. Even more fortuitously for visitors, the events during upcoming months present the perfect opportunity to make the most of this scene!
Starting in May, Martha’s Vineyard embarks on a season of celebrating food and drink. As you’ll discover, events focused on wine, local producers, and restaurants, along with just eating and drinking with good friends in beautiful surroundings, begin in the spring and continue throughout the summer and into the fall.
If you are thinking of visiting the Island and love to eat, drink and celebrate dining at its best, keep these dates in mind:
First out of the gate, and coinciding with Mother’s Day weekend, is the Martha’s Vineyard Wine Festival. In its second year, the Festival focuses on wine tastings and pairing dinners held in some of the Island’s loveliest restaurants and private homes. Its most unique component, however, is the Man vs. Wild Food Challenge, an island-wide competition in which participants vie to create the most extraordinary meal using foraged, local ingredients. Results from past year have been impressive and the contest welcomes professionals, amateurs and kids. To learn more about the Man vs. Wild Food Challenge and everything else happening at the Martha’s Vineyard Wine Festival, click here.
The long-established Taste of the Vineyard Stroll marks the official start of the Vineyard’s summer social season. Island restaurateurs, wine merchants and foodies gather under the gleaming white tents set up on the grounds of the historic Dr. Daniel Fisher House on Main Street in Edgartown. Restaurants participating in this annual MV Preservation Trust fundraiser strive to put their best plates forward, laden with tempting bites offered up for the pleasure of Strollers, nibblers and grazers. Later in the evening, live music lures sated guests onto the dance floor. As the Stroll is always a sell-out, you are well advised to book early if you are interested in attending. Click here for details.
Every June, beautifully presented ‘tastes’ await guests at the MV Preservation Trust’s Taste of the Vineyard. Photo by David Welch.
June 14, Aug. 2, Oct. 25 & 26
One of the more recent additions to the events calendar on Martha’s Vineyard, Farm. Field. Sea. bills itself as a culinary adventure. Hosted on three different occasions in three different locations, the dinners and the adventures are dictated by the sources of foods at each location. Participants experience how foods are obtained at the source, take part in learning how to coax the most out of their ingredients, cook their foods, and enjoy the conviviality of meals together. The June 14th event takes place at North Tabor Farm and the Menemsha Fish House and is led by Chef Chris Fischer. On August 2, the venues are Morning Glory Farm and Honeysuckle Oyster Farm; on October 25 & 26, Chef Fischer hosts again at North Tabor Farm and Beetlebung Farm. More information is available about Farm. Field. Sea. here.
Morning Glory Farm, one of the venues to be visited in this year’s Farm.Field.Sea experience.
Restaurant Week on Martha’s Vineyard is the perfect opportunity to check out Island restaurants, pre-season and at special prices. From haute to homey, graze your way through a week of lunch and dinner menus that feature every aspect of Martha’s Vineyard cuisine. The 4-day event offers dinner at the Beach Plum restaurant up in Chilmark, where beach roses cover the path to the nearby Atlantic; a prix fixe dinner at the iconic Black Dog, harbor-side in Vineyard Haven; a lobster bake at Oak Bluffs’ Coop de Ville; or a 3-course prix fixe dinner on the lawn of l’etoile among Edgartown whaling captains’ homes and many, many more. Look for details upcoming on http://www.mvrestaurantweek.com/.
Chesca’s in Edgartown has been a yearly participant in Martha’s Vineyard’s Restaurant Week. Photo by David Welch.
The 7th Annual Martha’s Vineyard Food and Wine Festival brings the season full circle, as travelers and residents honor the Island’s harvest and plenty. Typically featuring presentations, tastings and dinners by outstanding chefs from Boston, the Island and beyond, the highlights of last year’s event included a Chocolate and Wine Tasting, Sommelier Throw-down, several Continental food ‘tours,’ and the always-popular Grand Tasting. Visiting chefs included Andy Husbands of Tremont 647, Tim Cushman of o ya restaurant in Boston, and Hungry Mother’s Barry Maiden. Though plans for the 2014 Festival have not yet been finalized, you can check in with the Martha’s Vineyard Food and Wine Festival website, which should have all the details shortly.
Last-minute touches are made to small plates being offered at the MV Food and Wine Festival’s Grand Tasting, held in October. Photo by Celine Segel.
Carol Ward is content editor at MVOL providing current information about the Island at www.mvol.com & www.mvolmobile.com. An Island resident for 30 years, Carol was formerly publications editor for MV Chamber of Commerce. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo at the top by David Welch.