Memorial Day weekend (and, accordingly, summer) are right around the corner. In the spirit of the season, we’ll be featuring reports on the restaurants of popular weekend getaways all week.
Fact: In 1977, Nantucket (along with Martha’s Vineyard) tried to secede from Massachusetts. Civil war did not follow. Fact: Almost 85% of Nantucket County is covered by water. Fact: Nantucket is widely considered to have one of the best restaurant scenes in New England. Conclusion: Nantucket is awesome. Eating in Nantucket isn’t cheap (the island has far fewer good affordable options than the Vineyard), but it can provide many rewarding dining experiences. Below, five of your best bets.
•The Club Car (1 Main St, (508) 228-1101): The Club Car (so named because its lounge area is, in fact, in a railroad car) is a local favorite. The menu features an ever-rotating array of French-inspired food, including a positively legendary crabcake.
•The Galley on Cliffside Beach (54 Jefferson Ave, (508) 228-9641): The Galley on Cliffside Beach features both Nantucket’s best location (it’s the island’s only restaurant actually on the beach) and the best traditional New England food. All the dishes are made with screamingly fresh seafood and local produce (much of which is grown in the restaurant’s own garden). Lobster and ocean views: what could be more perfect?
•Sfoglia (130 Pleasant St, (508) 325-4500): Sfoglia has won rave reviews in both the original Nantucket location and their offshoot in New York City. The restaurant serves up simple Italian dishes done immaculately. Bonus: they offer half-portions of all their exemplary pastas, thereby enabling diners to enjoy a traditional Italian multicourse meal without feeling disgustingly full.
•Company of the Cauldron (5 E. India St, (508) 228-4016): Company of the Cauldron (named for a Renaissance-era cooking academy) provides a truly unique dining experience. Each night the restaurant offers one multicourse menu for all diners. Though the menu may change entirely from night to night, the dishes remain classic, fresh and locally inspired. Best of all, at an average price of a little under $60, the dinners are a steal.
•The Downyflake (18 Sparks Ave, (508) 228-5433): Head to The Downyflake for Nantucket’s best breakfast. The donuts are homemade and have achieved cult status. Really, what more do you need to know?