Summer, Sushi, and the Vineyard: It Doesn’t Get Any Better Than This -The Lookout Tavern, Oak Bluffs

by Guinevere Cramer on August 24, 2012

in Changes On The Vineyard, Dining & Food, On Point - MV Lifestyle

With the nights a little cooler and the wait for restaurants a little shorter, it’s time to go out and spend some time with friends.  I don’t know about you, but one of my favorite things to do is to grab sushi at the Lookout.

For years, that has been a favorite spot of mine during the Summer and Fall months.  And while I’m still getting used to all the changes of what was my favorite dive bar (we can’t call it that anymore, since the renovation), the sushi I have always loved is just a delectable as ever.

Realizing that I have never talked to any of the guys that can make spicy tuna roll that’s drool worthy, now was the time.  Who’s behind the glass making these delicious creations?   I decided that I’d stop by in the morning before the Lookout opened to do a little investigating.  Greeting me with a big smile was Sushi Chef Tony.

Tony was busy preparing all the fish brought in that morning for the sushi for the day, but had a little time to tell me a bit about himself.  Tony has been involved in making sushi for a number of years. First in Manhattan, NY and now on Martha’s Vineyard.  Not a surprise, he likes it here much better.  The people are nice, the fish is fresh, especially the Bonito and Striped Bass, and the water view from his sushi bar is pretty spectacular.

When I asked Tony if he had any favorites, he said of course.  For him, he likes the Dragon Roll which is shrimp tempura inside with sliced avocado, kabayaki sauce (soy sauce, mirin and sugar) and sesame seeds on the outside, and the MV Roll which also has shrimp tempura inside, but outside has spicy tuna topped with tempura crunch.  The combinations are in perfect harmony and are pleasing to the pallet.

If the sushi guru gives those a stamp of approval, I know what I’m eating when I come, which will be later on tonight to sample some of these creations.  It was a little too early for me, and  I wanted to come back with friends, so I could really enjoy the whole experience.

As thoughts of edamame and colorfull sushi rolls danced in my head througout the day, it was finally time to make my way over to the Lookout to see if Tony is as good as I think he is.  Still smiling hours later, Tony is gracefully creating masterpieces on plates, when I stop by to tell him I’m back, and ready to rock some sushi.  He is happy and reminds me of his favorites.

Soaking up that pricesless view, my friends and I are ready for our sushi feast.  We start with edamame which was fantastic as always — though I do miss it served in the paper containers.  The new fancy white bowls are still a surprise to me.

We then move on the the Dragon Roll, as per Tony’s recommendation and then the Spider Roll, which was a little out of my comfort zone.  It has deep fried soft shell crab and cucumber and avocado which is a little scary to me because of the crab, but I tried it anyways.  It was delicious of course.  I was scared for no reason.

We also had the Spicy Trio, which my friend pointed out is the best deal in the house, and not a lot of people know about  it.  Sorry, they do now.  It’s three rolls – the spicy tuna avocado roll, spicy salmon cucumber roll, and spicy white tuna crunch roll for only $21.50.  Seriously, that’s an awesome combo for a great price.  Who doesn’t like a deal that’s this delicious?

After having our fill, the consensus was that it’s still the best sushi ever.  MV Magazine and its voters got it right, there’s something about the sushi at the Lookout that makes it taste better.  I don’t know if it’s the view, the vibe, or the people but it’s just so good here.  Tony and his fellow sushi chefs know their stuff and really make great sushi.  For that I am grateful, and will continue to visit as often as I can to enjoy it.

On a side note, I learned something interesting about the sushi bar at the Lookout Tavern.  It is actually run by the Net Result.  Tony and his sushi specialist actually work for them, but run the space at the Lookout.  I had no idea.

Also, the same is true for Season’s Eatery & Pub down the street, sort of a small franchise.   It’s the same great sushi at all three places.  I guess that can explain why it seems so fresh at the Lookout, but I think the Lookout itself makes it so good and fun to eat.

Next time you stop by the Lookout, take a peak at the guys preparing your sushi.  If you watch them even for a minute, you will see that it really is a craft, and the speed and precision they employ is pretty amazing.  You’ll not only enjoy your food, but you’ll appreciate it a bit more too.  Oh yes, the Lookout has a lot more on their menu than sushi, but it’s my favorite thing on the menu, in addition to those addictive buffalo chicken fingers.  Also, I have to say that I adore the people that work there – Dena, Summer, Shawn – you and the rest of your team have helped make some amazing memories for me!

See you on the porch!

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