Archive for June, 2010

Eating My Way Through Martha’s Vineyard: Part I - Ocean Club

// June 29th, 2010 // 3 Comments » // Uncategorized

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FWG is spending his summer on Martha’s Vineyard, eating at restaurants he would never normally be able to afford and doing things a fat kid should do: like kite surfing and smiling.  Stay tune for more tales from the Vineyard.

Of the many things to do on Martha’s Vineyard, eating is often top priority.  But with a plethora of snack bars, fried food, and seafood shacks, navigating the 4 mile long island, dense with dining destinations is no small feat.  Well allow me to answer at least one part of the question for you.  For the best food in one of the best atmospheres on the island, go to The Ocean Club.

Saying that one restaurant on Martha’s Vineyard is superior to another and debating that point might be an exercise in futility for most; the answer will most likely lie in actually going to said restaurant.  Or in my case, the proof was in the (chocolate bread) pudding.

The Ocean Club is situated in the historic “Dreamland” building in Oak Bluffs.  Once an amusement park, arcade, and Coney Island-esqe place of entertainment, the Dreamland building now plays home to a host of businesses, including the newly opened Ocean Club. Walking up the steps the diner is met with an inviting sense of place, as you cross the breezeway in to the cocktail area, the nuances and efforts of design are easily recognizable and appreciated.

Whether it is the shear expansiveness of their bar and cocktail area, the poured concrete floors and ambient lighting, or even the smiles on the face of their welcoming and knowledgeable staff, they’ve managed to do the big things great and the small things even better.  The table arrangements were elegant, set atop butcher paper that came off as fitting, not a cheesy-gimmick.

Managers Kevin, Kyle, and Troy, with over 35 years of restaurant experience between them have managed to impart their wisdom from years spent in Las Vegas and New York City and apply to the island eating scene. The pitfall of many a restaurant here on Martha’s Vineyard is trying to bring outside flavors or themes without embracing the rich tradition and way of life here on the vineyard.

Perhaps it is due to its historic building, but the Ocean Club manages to bring fresh flavor and a level of relaxed-upscale to the island, neither imposing an unnecessary trend or fad, nor fading into the bleak beige background noise of other island eateries.

Every meal begins with breadsticks and a three dipping condiments: fresh basil pesto that would rival the best in Italy, a roasted red pepper and spicy chili blend, and my personal favorite, a tapenade that will honestly change your life, and was certainly a sign of things to come.

Our meal began with a Caprese salad with a sweet balsamic vinaigrette drizzled over fresh beefsteak tomatoes and fresh mozzarella.  The basil was not bitter, but rather offered a fresh aromatic to the dish.  The portion size was almost more than I could finish; which is no doubt a good thing. With the ocean breeze gently channeled through the huge double doors, I couldn’t help but become swept up in the spirit of great food done absolutely, precisely the right way.

My date enjoyed the brazed short ribs and potato chips, a dish I’d never seen nor heard offered elsewhere.  The dish, decidedly unique to the Ocean Club was tender and rich and offered a complex flavor construction enhanced by the textural curveball of the thinly-sliced potato chips.

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Something I might never have thought to venture on my own, but at the recommendation of our server Keri I was happy to try.

My entrée was a 16 oz Ribeye with potatoes au gratin and grilled asparagus. Typical of most restaurants is the exchange of “how would you like that cooked” to which your response is a moot point; your meat will be served to you either so raw you hear a faint “moo” as you cut into it, or so well done it doubles a shoe leather or “Cajun.”  Not so with wunderkind Chef Brett Williams at the helm.  I ordered my steak “medium” and it came just as I asked.  Tender and delivering every bit of flavor you’d expect from a choice cut, with no superfluous dressings or sauces.  Chef Williams was confident to let the quality of his product speak for itself, and speak it did.  While the meat was certainly delicious, the focus of the meal would have to be his take on potatoes au-gratin, which was served in perfect squares, cooked to perfection.  The one kind of dish you wish you had in your repertoire, Chef Williams delivers nightly.

Constantly in search of the perfect meal, I can say I’ve looked high and low.  Whether dining in Tuscany or Tucson, clam shacks  or dive bars, fast food to French food,  I’ve had my fair share of poor, mediocre, and great eating experiences.  I can say without a doubt that the level of service and quality I received at Ocean Club has set a new standard for culinary excellence and will be a place I return to many more times.  If quality dining, whether for dinner, aperitifs, or simply cocktails and appetizers, is something you desire then make Ocean Club your destination for on island culinary excellence.


Wet t-shirt contest? Yeah, golf still sucks.

// June 28th, 2010 // 7 Comments » // Uncategorized

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Yay for Upstate NY.  Where there’s cows, rednecks, and the LPGA *gag*  At least we have good wines to boast (which I so expertly tested this weekend on an afternoon wine tour).

But this wet t-shirt celebration looks like a regular ol’ buzz kill.  Here’s why:

Chicks - dig golf only if that means our guy will give us their credit card on Sunday afternoon so we can hit the mall while he watches the Masters.  Also.  We love scandal…aka Tiger Woods.  No way these ladies actually enjoy golfing.  Either pick up a tennis racket or hit the putt-putt course.  Yeah I said it, and I can because I’m a chick…and, I’m right.

Dudes - just dig golf.  It’s a total booze-and-schmooze, old boys’ club for all ages of males.  **Note: they do not dig golf for the modestly dressed lady pros who drive the ball a mere fraction of the range and are completely covered when bending over to pick up their putt**

Hopefully the LPGA trophy comes with a paid vacation to Panama City Beach for some spring break lessons on working the camera, taking celebratory body shots, and wet t-shirt contests.  That’s where I learned my best moves.  Put to practice on said wine tour.  Spring Break ‘09 - holler.

xoxo.  The Rook.

The Rook Presents an HR Nightmare

// June 22nd, 2010 // No Comments » // Uncategorized

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Take that, mass-killer-slash-tyrant-ruler!!  Toiling in your rat infested, communist sweat shops - bah!  I’d rather risk my life for the World’s Biggest Snoozefest that I can stream online anyways!

A lesson in playing hooky: just yesterday I fell terribly ‘ill’…typical case of the Mondays…and did nothing but kick it on the futon, pick at a couple of Strasburgers leftover from the father’s day bbq, and then spilled Genny Light all over my new pedicure cause I totally found the next big thing:

HAMILL - Official Teaser from Hamill the Movie on Vimeo.

Jackpot.  Disney has met its black-orphaned-offensive-tackle, underdog-championship-bball-team, Titan-remembering match.  Because Hamill is about a deaf UFC wrestler.  I’m just a regular HR nightmare.  What.  Now.

Cat Snitches On Dog To Deer, Deer Give Dog The Business. Cats Still Suck

// June 22nd, 2010 // 7 Comments » // Uncategorized

Cat’s just ruining shit for everyone. I’m an unabashed dog lover, I mean just a few days ago I took my dog for a ride in a prop-plane.  Can you see a cat being happy as a pig in shit to be taking a site-seeing tour over Martha’s Vineyard?  Hell no!  Cat would be all like “let me go home, I don’t want to do anything with you, just want to sit here all day and eat cat food and get fat and lick my own ass and take poops in Rubbermaid boxes”  Not a dog though, a dog just wants to kick it.

Compare These Two Viral Videos

// June 21st, 2010 // 3 Comments » // Uncategorized

On Friday over on my real” job at NESN.com I posted this video of Florida recruit Sammy Watkins giving some hipster at his high school the business:

This was met with a huge influx of reader submissions about so called “other” viral videos of football players across the country.  Particularly this one of Reagan Maula from the University of Hawaii running through a wall:

Look in my mind the answer is clear cut:  Sammy Watkins laid out a hipster for the good of all humanity and got it on tape.  Reagan Malua ran through some dry wall in a “staged moment of isanity”  what makes one video work and the other fail is that unintentional hilarity of one and the faux-tough guy schtick of Hawaii’s fullback.  Bottom line, one guy gave an emo kid something to cry about the other ran through some sheetrock.  You be the judge.

College Football News: Utah In The Pac-10 A Strong Move

// June 21st, 2010 // 1 Comment » // Uncategorized

utahThe cloak-and-dagger of the Pac-10 expansion talks is officially over.

I picture five men sitting around a large oak table, stroking their mustaches and plotting the future of America’s energy situation and the fate of its most overrated conference. The outcome: We’ll all be driving hydrogen cars by the end of 2010, and Utah will be in the Pac-10.

The Pac-10, one of the oldest in college football, has been around since 1915. Now that Utah and Colorado have joined the mix, the conference has 12 teams. For the math majors out there, that would be the exact number needed to play an end-of-season real championship game. Let’s also go ahead and assume that the Pac-10 divides its new superconference into different divisions.

It’s a win-win for Utah, a perennial favorite to bust BCS games. The Utes get to play in a better conference (goodbye, Mountain West) and earn at least $8 million for the university. Being a member of the MWC, brought in a paltry $1.2 million in 2009.

Read the rest at NESN.COM

The Rook is over Bieber Fever.

// June 18th, 2010 // 6 Comments » // Uncategorized

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Glad that there’s NOTHING new to report from the most boring week of my life.  While the FWG has been sun-bathing in Martha’s Vineyard, I’ve been Upstate stalking the cable guy.  Annnnd we are finally back online.

Google can be so cruel.

The Bieb had his grimy, Vaseline-soaked hands all over the Stanley Cup.  Seriously?  Kid’s had his paws all up in ESPN business.  Threw the first pitch at a Chicago White Sox game (actually…he can keep the Sox.  And he might as well take the Phillies at this point).  And I’ll take the liberty of starting the “Bieber comes between Kim Kardashian and Reggie Bush” rumor.

First things first, we need figure out which locker room he actually belongs in.  Also.  I hate The Bieb.  Am I the only one with standards?  That fake-lesbian haircut is deserving of a good smack down from the high school jazz band.

In fact.  A lot of lesbians…I mean, young women with bowl cuts who try to-look-like-little-boys…are mistaken for The Bieb.  Will some one just offer him some candy and a ride in their white van already?

You Guys Are Killing It With User Submissions Today: WTF Google

// June 18th, 2010 // 6 Comments » // Uncategorized

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If you have to “Google” Why Do Men Cheat then I think you’ve just answered you own question.

Thanks to Sachel for the tip.

Reader Ryan’s Facebook Submission. You Guys Keep Me Young

// June 18th, 2010 // 3 Comments » // Uncategorized

pls-handleFrom Above The Law:

Mentor is very attractive, straight, and non-homophobic.  So non-homophobic, in fact, that last fall, after some friendly badgering and drinking, he let me fellate him while he watched lesbian porn.  Much to my delight, Mentor found this arrangement convenient/pleasurable/better than his hand/whatever, and it continued sporadically for a few months.

In January, Mentor got a steady girlfriend and my “services” were not further retained.  I completely understood and was happy for them.

Meet The New Sensation Sweeping America: Bros PONYING Bros

// June 18th, 2010 // 4 Comments » // Uncategorized

I get a hell of a lot of tips in my mailbox every week. Which reminds me, stop sending me your “Bros Icing Bros” pictures from the weekend, I simply won’t publish them.  Because as my man Drew over at Deadspin put it, that shit is weak and make you a huge deucher.   But the tip I recieved this week from fan of the site, Zach was subject line “Ride That Pony, Sir.”  That was just the attention grabber I was looking for.  Inside I found a solitary link, to a solitary site: www.Brospony.ingbros.com Where bros play the song “Pony” by Ginuwine and the rules state that the other bro within earshot must dance a lonely dance to one of the worlds best worst songs.

Dance hipster, dance.