Situated miles away from the coast of Massachusetts the idyllic island of Martha’s Vineyard hosts some of the most exclusive yet delicious events of the season, like the Martha’s Vineyard Food and Wine Festival that takes place annually in October. It’s the perfect excuse to travel to New England and discover some great wines!
If you love great food, good wines, and discover what coastal and island life on Martha’s Vineyard is like, the Martha’s Vineyard Food and Wine Festival, hosted by the Edgartown Board of Trade, is a destination event you must put on your calendar. Living in Edgartown, I get to enjoy the change of seasons and the variety of events in town, and when food & wine are paired, it’s always my favorite type of event.
Every year the events stick to the same theme: sourcing tasty wines and pairing them with even tastier foods. Signature events like their Grand Tasting, Bourbon Dinners, and oyster-inspired events are scared throughout a four day weekend along with new events each year. Tickets tend to sell out quickly for the small wine dinners, as well as the VIP Grand Tasting tickets, so make sure to score those as soon as possible!
Quick tip: Visit some of the local restaurants while attending the weekend of the festival – you are sure to run into your favorite chefs at the local bars like The Atlantic and The Port Hunter, right on Main Street in Edgartown!
Some of the events in 2016 included:
- Fresh Off the Farm – A delicious, community gathering and weekend kick-off combining Island farms and chefs with sustainable, family-run vineyards;
- Somm Throw Down – A face-off of three wine personalities that pairs 12 wines with four small plates designed by such Island culinary masters as Jeremy Davis of The Port Hunter and Brian Woods of Alchemy;
- Joseph Carr Dinner – Chef Justin Melnick teams up with sommelier-turned-producer Joseph Carr for a delicious, local-as-local-gets dinner paired with selections from Dylan’s Ghost Winery and Joseph Carr Wines;
- O-Ya / Grey Barn Collaboration – An intersection of flavor between one of Boston’s best restaurants and a stunning architectural setting;
- Oh Shucks! – A dozen briny bivalves fresh from three of the Vineyard’s highest quality oyster farms, paired with perfect pours;
- Grand Tasting – Relocated this year to the Great Lawn of the Harbor View Hotel, the Grant Tasting is the highlight of the weekend’s celebration of Sea, Farm & Vine and features over 300 winemakers, spirits, breweries, gourmet foods, and restaurants;
- Champy Brunch – Brunch and bubbly with Jenny Johnson – founder of Champy champagne, and tv personality from NESN’s Dining Playbook;
- Island Fare with a French Flair – L’Espalier’s Chef de Cuisine Matthew Delisle and Wine Director Lauren Dadonna travel to the island to join former L’Espalier colleague and current Lighthouse Grill Chef Richard Doucette and his culinary team in creating an unforgettable 4-course, locally-sourced dinner. Advanced Sommelier Dadonna will carefully select wines to complement each course, guiding guests through a fine wine tasting experience.
Visiting Martha’s Vineyard should be on your travel bucket list – not just for a gorgeous event like the Martha’s Vineyard Food and Wine Festival, but in the spring to enjoy the gorgeous blooms, in the summer to spend some time on the beaches, and the winter to cuddle up with a good local book and watch the snow bounce off the lighthouses. Explore things to see and do on Martha’s Vineyard – you won’t be disappointed!
Insider’s Tip: Instead of booking a hotel room, join forces with some friends and rent a house from one of the rental companies on island. It’s a great way to have access to a full kitchen – because when on the Vineyard, one of the best parts is sourcing delicious, local produce and cooking it up yourself! You can also check out AirBnb on island!
Disclaimer: Photos courtesy of the MV Food and Wine Festival and taken by Vineyard Lights. I was invited to a variety of events that weekend, but opinions are my own.