Slice of Life dishes out comfort

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Asian salmon salad. — Photo by Marnely Murray

If you ask Pete Smyth of the Oak Bluffs restaurant Slice of Life how he would describe his food, he’d respond with one word: Comforting. And after visiting Slice of Life (for the first time ever in my five years of living on-Island; I know, shame on me!), I couldn’t agree more with that word. Step into the restaurant, and a cozy, casual environment envelops you — it’s like you’re home. Chef Smyth studied culinary arts in Newbury College in Brookline, and went on to work in restaurants on the Cape and in Boston. In Boston, he met his wife, Islander Jennifer. Deciding to move to the Island, he worked at Cafe Moxie for a time, later moving on to Slice of Life (owned then by the current owners of State Road and Beach Road). Fast-forward to seven years ago, when Mr. Smyth decided to purchase the restaurant.

Today, it’s a great choice for off-season dining. The food offerings are quite delicious, so let’s start with that. When I shared with friends (on Facebook; nonetheless) that I was headed to Slice of Life, everyone commented one thing: “Get the fried green tomato sandwich!” And who am I not to follow my friends’ suggestions?

This fried green tomato sandwich ($11.75) is just what you need in your life: Crispy fried green tomatoes are tucked in between bacon and fresh lettuce. The bread is a rosemary loaf that is made right in the kitchen — crusty, with just enough chew. Slathered on both sides is this basil mayonnaise that I’d like to carry around in my purse and dollop on everything, it’s that good.

If you’re looking for a lighter option, the Asian salmon salad ($17) is packed with green beans, scallions, potato crisps, and healthy shiitake mushrooms, all served over mixed greens that are tossed in a ginger soy vinaigrette. The salmon was perfectly cooked. This is a great protein-packed meal for those days when you need a good lunch while running errands.

Going to Slice and not getting a pizza is a crime in itself, so make sure to try their offerings. The Slice Pizza is layers of flavor that include sundried tomatoes, caramelized onions, goat cheese, and black olive spread. The entire pie is topped with mixed greens, making it a good balance of naughty pizza and nice salad.

If you don’t have time to grab lunch or dinner at Slice of Life, remember they also offer a baked goods case of delicious treats, as well as an espresso bar. Their most popular coffee drink? The Chai Jolt: Iced chai with a shot of espresso. Coffee beans are sourced from Plymouth, so you know you’re getting fresh coffee.

One great thing to remember is that they also serve Sunday brunch. With items such as roasted chicken hash, breakfast nachos, breakfast burritos, and huevos rancheros, I know where I’ll be next Sunday.

Slice of Life off-season schedule: lunch (11 am to 5 pm), dinner (5 to 8 pm), and Sunday brunch (8 am to 2 pm), closed on Mondays. For more information, visit sliceoflifemv.com.