Martha's Vineyard Restaurants

As a writer, I love hyperbole. It grabs the reader’s attention, making the point and then some – stretching the truth for good purpose. The title of this post is a great example.Sharky’s Cantina may not be the Greatest Place to Eat in the Whole Wide World, but if it isn’t, it’s darn close. Seriously, given the choices out there, I think I’d just as soon eat at Sharky’s as any other place. Why? I’m glad I asked.

First and second, it’s funky and fun. Third, fourth, and fifth, the food is great, the selection wide, and the prices reasonable.

I first came to an awareness of Sharky’s when there was just the Oak Bluffs location, a cozy little spot that they’ve occupied since 2003. It was great, but a bit crowded. (More hyperbole. Think: squeezing the New England Patriots defensive line into a Smart Car.) The place was consistently bursting at the seams with people stuffing their faces with tacos, chimichangas, and burritos, all the while washing them down with sangria and margaritas.

An added attraction, if the mob scene wasn’t enough to draw you in, was the requirement to visit “The Shark Tank” next door if you had to (how shall I put this delicately?) deal with all those drinks you’d been downing. As a guy, there’s something distinctly unsettling about doing my business in a facility called “The Shark Tank”.

Note that none of this kept me away. The pluses far outweighed the downsides. My family went there at every opportunity. Still, it was clear that they needed more space. In 2005, the much-needed larger Edgartown location opened. It can almost handle the crowds who continue to flock there. The outside seating under the lights helps a great deal in the good weather. (Yet another benefit: Sharky’s is open year-round. No unrequited hankering for tacos in the dead of January!)

Truth be told, Mexican food would not be my first choice of cuisine. Much of it I can take or leave. That’s OK. My family is heavily (no pun intended) into it and I like enough of it to appreciate the place. Just the awesome freshly-made chips and pico de gallo are enough to sate my appetite. I have two burrito-devotee daughters who swear by that selection. My wife considers the veggie tacos to be unsurpassed.

The funny thing is that I don’t order Mexican from their menu anymore. Not because it’s not good. It is! However, I’ve discovered the Sharky’s Special Sauce Burger. I know it’s not a burger joint, but this is one of the best burgers on the planet. Between the burger and the excellent fries, I rarely find a need to stray from that selection. Look, if I ate there thee times a week – and I might if I could – I’d mix in the tacos, fajitas, and quesadillas. Unfortunately, I only get there a few times a year. Thus, it’s generally the burger for me.

If there’s any room after the chips and pico de gallo, that is.

Image courtesy of roolrool.

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