The Island now has its very own larder — the Larder at 342 State Road in Vineyard Haven. It’s a butcher shop, kitchen, and prepared-foods stop, with a focus on local meats and vegetables. The Larder is owned and operated by Jefferson Munroe (the GOOD Farm) and Daniele Dominick (Scottish Bakehouse). The two already successful business entrepreneurs saw a need for a market solely based on Island-made culinary products.
As you walk into the Larder, you’re greeted with a few refrigerated cases, the first stocked with every type of locally raised meat and poultry you could ever imagine. Jefferson’s chickens and ducks have always been a popular menu item at Island restaurants, but now they are easily accessible to the public as well. The next case contains a variety of items, from ginger duck bone broth to toppings like Island-made sauerkraut. What’s best about the Larder is the fact that you can walk in and have no idea what to make for dinner, and walk out with a full three-course menu, thanks to the help of the creative items they provide. Granted, most of their product is raw, but you can also find some ready-to-eat items, like bourbon maple smoked chicken and duck fat–roasted potatoes — those two items alone sound like a dream meal to me. With shelves of condiments from Scottish Bakehouse, like pickled peppers, jams, jellies, and more, your meal is rounded out. Daniele will also be moving her wholesale business and catering operation to the Larder, relieving the Scottish Bakehouse from those duties. This move also helps her focus on developing the catering side of the Bakehouse, where they offer a variety of options like buffet, family-style, or plated service, along with a full catering staff, including bartenders and shellfish shuckers, as well as private chef services.
The most interesting facet of the Larder is that it’s the only place on-Island that rents out a kitchen space by the hour for chefs and other food-interested people (who are also ServSafe certified) looking to experiment. The Island is filled to the brim with gastronomic creatives itching to get a food product on the market. With no real kitchen to test ideas in, those ideas float away to sea, never to be seen again. At the Larder, the rent starts at $15 and goes up to $40 an hour, depending on the time of year and the time you’ll be using the kitchen. The full stainless steel kitchen is equipped with plenty of table space, deep fryers, ovens, and the basics. If you’ve ever dreamed of creating the Island’s first line of locally sourced baby food, or want to whip up batches of fresh pasta made from Island-milled grains, now is your chance.
Currently open weekends, the Larder will soon open with summer hours. Find sandwiches and soups then, along with other locally sourced eats. In the meantime, follow them on Facebook for updates: facebook.com/thelardermv.