A glorious pop of red now sits next to Menemsha Blues in Vineyard Haven. It’s Porto, the Island’s newest pizza place. Like a red beacon beckoning you from 5 Corners, you have to check it out.
First, let’s talk about how fun the outside is! It just looks like someplace you’d want to go. Porto brightens up that entire area. The picnic tables with the coordinating red umbrellas are perfect for grabbing a slice and a cold beverage.
Aside from the outside being eye-catching, the inside is just as clean, simple and inviting. There’s fresh pizza on the shelves, the menu is simple too. There’s pizza – just good, tasty pizza ready for the taking. Tamara was behind the counter when I was there. She was cute and friendly, and happy to help me with my pizza selection which was actually tough because part of the pizza selection includes deep dish.
I really wanted that but I was somewhat good and got the special of the day isntead, which had a garlic oil base, feta, garlic, and spinach. It was really good. Just like the decor, it was simple and made with really fresh ingredients. You could really taste all the flavors. The dough was thin and yummy too.
Porto is the brainchild of two friends who like to make pizza, Jiri Pavelka and Nick Catt. Luckily, Jiri was there when I stopped by so I was able to get a little scoop about the place. Many of you may know Jiri from the Chilmark Store where he worked for 14 years. He started there as sort of a do-it-all guy, and then got into making pizza. Hmmm perhaps we’ll develop an obsession for their pizza in Vineyard Haven?
He and Nick decided four years ago that they would like to open their own shop. Lucky for us they did, and what a great location which they transformed in only two months.
You’re so close to the Steamship Authority, which is constantly busy, and to Stop & Shop. You can grab your groceries and a pie. They know it’s a great spot and have fun with it — as you can see by their motto on the sign by the street, First Choice, Last Chance.
When I asked Jiri what made Porto’s pizza so special, he was very humble and said it’s just good. That’s a good enough reason I think. He is not a pizza snob at all. He loves to get a pie at other places because they’re all so different here on the Vineyard. Two of his favs are Roccos and Offshore Ale (love their Duck Pizza).
Porto has a simple menu – a special of the day (which changes daily), cheese, pepperoni, wheat, and a deep dish pie. Once again, I have to use the word simple which is actually refreshing.
So, next time you’re craving a slice or a whole pie, stop by Porto and don’t wimp out like I did – go for the deep dish! Here’s their number just in case you need it right now, (508) 693-6200. They’re open everyday 10 am – 10 pm now through at least Columbus Day.