Sunny Sundays are meant to be spent with a little self-indulgence, and I followed the beat of my cravings to Linda Jean’s on Circuit Avenue.
“Seat yourself,” the sign welcomed, and my party scanned the room for an available booth. The white painted booths have high backs, making a crowded restaurant feel calm and intimate — the universal table of choice. Linda Jean’s is a year-round breakfast, lunch, and dinner spot. It’s rarely empty, and always serving up something you’ll like.
Since Sundays are all about indulgence, think about your most ideal meal, calories aside. For me, it’s anything with toasty bread and melted cheese, and maybe a crunch of fresh produce. With this in mind, I ordered the grilled cheese and tomato ($5.99), which comes with chips and a couple of sliced pickles. I ordered it on multigrain bread, which was toasted golden brown, and just warm enough to melt the cheese. I could eat this meal every afternoon, and for less than $6, I just might.
My friends went with the fresh lobster roll ($19.99), fried scallop plate ($14.99), Greek salad ($10.99), and breaded fish filet sandwich ($10.99) — plenty of plates to sample.
The lobster roll was stuffed with fresh lobster claw and tail meat. It had just the right ratio of mayo, and bits of lettuce and cabbage inside. It was served on a crunchy toasted roll, with a side of fries and coleslaw. A tasty lobster roll lunch is one of the first signs of summer, and my friend generously shared bites.
The fried scallop plate tempted the entire table. Round and lightly fried scallops sat on the plate in piles. It was served with french fries, coleslaw, and a lemon wedge, which I always recommend sprinkling on everything. Bay scallops aren’t traditionally fried, but the lightness of the coating had them tasting just as sweet as they should, with that crunchy savory batter none of us can resist.
Amid the fried fish, chips, cheese, and slaw, the Greek salad was the spruce of color our table needed. A pile of greens topped with feta cheese, egg, cucumber, tomato, olives, and beets fit onto the plate like pieces of a produce puzzle. We all need our sources of proteins and vitamins, and if you’re feeling deficient, a Linda Jean’s Greek salad is a good go-to, at a good price.
Speaking of good — service is another aspect of Linda Jean’s that always seems on point. A friendly and attentive staff makes customers feel welcome and well taken care of in an inviting space. Exposed brick and beams, soft floral wallpaper, and beadboard give the large dining room a sweet, old-fashioned farmhouse feel with a modern flair. Linda Jean’s is located in a large Cape Cod–style building. It’s painted two bold shades of purple, with off-white trim and decorative shutters.
When you live on Martha’s Vineyard, it’s good to have backpocket restaurants to recommend to visitors and off-Island friends. These places should be reliably delicious with versatile menu options. They should have great service, happy customers, and prices that aren’t outrageous. Linda Jean’s seems to have all its boxes checked, and if it’s not on your shortlist, it should be.
Linda Jean’s, 25 Circuit Ave., Oak Bluffs. 508-693-4093; lindajeansrestaurant.com.