The Taste of the Vineyard is what happens if you crossed a smorgasboard with an Island equivalent of the Met Gala. At this annual summer party, you enjoy each other’s company in style, rub elbows with summer’s elite guests, and contribute to a great cause that keeps the Island going. This is the place to eat, drink, and be merry!
While today it more closely resembles a food festival than a fundraiser, the Taste got its start in 1986 as a means to raise funds to preserve and protect the Vineyard’s many beloved cultural touchpoints. Today, the Taste is the main fundraiser for the Vineyard Trust, a nonprofit that directs the funds toward the restoration of beloved Island buildings.
In the 33 years since its nascency, proceeds from the Taste have kept the Flying Carousel horses polished and spinning, the stately Grange Hall standing tall, and Alley’s General Store shingled and ready to mingle with summer visitors. These are just a few of the 20 landmarks that the Trust keeps shipshape.
At this white-pants event on Thursday, June 13, the food-vendor-to-guest ratio is ideal. This is where the oeno-enthusiasts and olfaction alphas come to play. Ganache with panache, candied pear with flair, éclairs with éclat. Gastronauts will get the chance to hop from table to table and ask the purveyors any question of origin on their mind.
The 40 vendors in attendance include some of the best the Vineyard has to offer. Lucky Hank’s will likely offer vegetarian-friendly goodies, M.V. Smokehouse will have a selection of its smoked fish spreads, freshly baked goods will be provided by Scottish Bakehouse, and Enchanted Chocolates may have some of its famous “Stoner Food” chocolate treats to try.
In terms of drinks, the list of purveyors is just as long. Choose from hundreds of different sips to imbibe. A few include Bad Martha’s beer made partially from Island-grown grape leaves, Martha’s Spiked lemonade, adulterated with what? You’ll have to find out. And the mixologists at Island Cocktail Co. will be sure to take care of you, whatever your drink needs may be.
Not a foodie? All you need to know is that these chefs and their yummy progeny are the best of the isle, and you can bet on leaving stuffed and satiated.
The parade of hors d’oeuvres match their lip-smacking onlookers for style. Whipped, garnished, and plated to perfection, the bites rival the fashionable revelers for visual prowess.
The festivities continue into the weekend. On Saturday, June 15, pastel-clad party guests can purchase exclusive experiences and items via silent and/or live auction.
While food is not the spotlight of this event, you can still find delectable dining partners in the fresh oysters and fine wines laid out by the cream-of-the-crop caterer, V. Jaime Hamlin and Sons.
The proceeds from the Taste help to preserve the Vineyard as we know it and love it. So, thank you to those who empty their wallets and fill their bellies, and help keep our Island shining bright.
Limited quantities of tickets are available for purchase on the MV Preservation Trust website, mvpreservation.org.