by Advanced Sommelier Jenny Benzie
While Nantucket has a handful of places for a quick grab-and-go coffee paired with a Morning Glory muffin, sometimes you are in need of a hearty breakfast. Whether it is to clear your head from the night before or get your read for the day in front of you, start off your day with a delicious breakfast from Black-Eyed Susan’s. This small, elegant eatery is open bright and early at 7 am and serves until 1 pm. You can order your choice of an egg scramble, omelette and Black Eyed Susan’s best. Don’t forget to share an order of their Pennsylvania Dutch Cakes for breakfast dessert!
What makes it even more fun is that it is a Bring Your Own Bottle establishment. You are probably thinking that this would be amazing for dinner, but who doesn’t enjoy a mimosa with their brunch? Bring a bottle of Pasqua Prosecco to mix with your orange juice there. Prosecco, being a perfect combo of a fresh and lively flavor with a well rounded and balanced bouquet, is suitable for every dish and occasion. This is a sparkling wine made from grapes of the Glera variety grown in the Province of Treviso. Here one finds ideal climatic conditions and soils for obtaining a wine with unique characteristics. It has a brilliant straw yellow colour, with greenish highlights; its nose is fruity and rather intense and it is fresh and well-balanced on the palate.
For those of you who prefer to leave the drinking until after noon (except on special occasions), you can create your own little outdoor dining experience with a sandwich from Something Natural just a few yards out of town on Cliff Road paired with a dainty half bottle (or can) of wine to split. The piled-high sandwiches are fresh and made to order on a variety of choices of bread that are baked on the premises every morning. Don’t forget to get a selection of homemade cookies as well. Better yet, just buy a tub of the cookie dough so that you can bake the cookies at home anytime you want!
An easy way to enjoy a sip of wine with your sammie at the beach is to go with a can of wine. Yes, wine is now canned as well as bottled! Grab a koozie and a refreshing drink of Lar Kan Napa Valley Wine. Made by Winemaker Sean Larkin, he knew no one of sound mind would put an ultra-premium Napa Valley heavy hitter wine into a beer can, so he did! Now you can enjoy the same full-throttle, heavy hitting drinking pleasure of his bottled wine but in a hand sized 375 ml can, which is equivalent to a half bottle of wine. This Sauvignon Blanc delivers a bright mineral nose with creamy tropical fruit on the palate. If red is your choice of color, the Merlot is bursting with ripe black fruit, chewy tannins and a cocoa-dusted finish. Get them while you can!
With all the fabulous seafood options to eat on Nantucket, it is no wonder that there is an outstanding sushi restaurant on island. The skill and craftsmanship that goes behind producing a top-grade sushi roll should be left to the experts at Sushi by Yoshi and brought to your table for dining pleasure. Touted as Nantucket’s only authentic Japanese restaurant, their complete menu is available for take-out and they can cater your next small to large event as well. They are also conveniently open seven days a week, year-round as well.
Sushi has a variety of toppings and fillings, so one would think it might be hard to pick a universal wine to pair with such diversity. The key here is to pair it with something that will compliment the most flavors, instead of being too far of a reach in any one direction. Enter Sake, which is alcoholic beverage made by polishing rice to remove the bran (think of it akin to removing the skins from wine grapes) and fermenting the core just like you do grape juice for wine. Akishika Shuzo “Bambi” Sake is packaged in a glass one cup for a perfect sized serving of 180 ml. Compact, dry, clean and even, this super approachable “deer” of a beverage has flavors of rice, oatmeal, wheat and a touch of nougat. It is typically served chilled, but you will see the flavors come to life as you let in warm in your glass jar throughout the meal.
Perhaps your day has come full circle and you would like to have an intimate dining experience without having to do the dishes or clean up anything after. Centre Street Bistro is your choice for charming American bistro that offers your choice of seating from a cozy, rustic dining room to an in-season outdoor terrace. The food here at this year-round restaurant is pure and honest, creative yet uncomplicated and unpretentious. Owners Tim and Ruth Pitts met after attending culinary school and both honing their skills on island. Be sure to enjoy their famous baked goat cheese tart as they invite you to dine with them at this classic Nantucket restaurant destination that also happens to BYOB friendly.
With so many menu choices available, a safe bet would be the wine-drinking friendly option of a lighter style red. Baron De Ley Rioja Reserva is a lovely Spanish beauty mainly made from the Tempranillo grape. It is aged 20 months in new American oak casks, and then aged even further in bottle for two years before being released. Traces of toffee and wild herb nuances are followed by a red berry fruit mix on the palate with a soft, supple finish. The aftertaste will linger well with the memories of your delicious dining experience.
On the rare occasion that you happen to not finish the bottle of wine with that you brought with you, it is always generous to leave a little splash for your server to taste at the end of their shift. It is also recommended to take an extra bottle (or can) of wine with you just in case your first bottle is not up to par or perhaps you meet new friends and want to share a toast to the good life on Nantucket with them!