Ah the joys of the Sweet Life. Each year I am delighted by what’s new at this fabulous Oak Bluffs restaurant featuring seasonal, modern cusine. And this year does not disappoint.
With chef/owner Kevin Crowell at Detente for the season, chef Carlos Montoya is back in the kitchen with his inventive and delicious cooking. I love catching Carlos in the kitchen. He is so talented and loves cooking, and it shows in his food.
The menu for the restaurant is enough to get your taste buds wanting, and coming back for more. However, it’s that little outdoor bar that always brings me back.
The bar at Sweet Life is just big enough for a nice crowd, but small enough to be an intimate scene. Of course you can get the full menu, but I wanted to sample from the new bar menu.
One of the things I love about this hidden gem is who you meet at this particular bar. It’s always a memorable experience, and with Tippi, the bartender serving up fabulous, fresh cocktails, it’s definitely interesting too.
I was lucky enough to get a seat, and began my night with the Rosemary Cape – housemade rosemary infused vodka, and cranberry juice. Loved this twist on the classic Cape Cod. I even went home and made my own rosemary infused vodka. Thanks for the inspiration!
While enjoying my cocktail, I began speaking with the woman next to me. Her name was Ellen, and she was fascinating. She is a Transformational Leader for Social Impact for a company. In a nutshell, she helps women around the world have a voice, end their suffering. Talking to her was such a gift.
We shared the local tuna tartare – truffle-ponzu, avocado crema, wasabi tobiko, crispy yucca, and had a little treat from the chef of some steak tartare. When you have good tartare, it’s an amazing gift for your palate, and chef Carlos Montoya delivers.
Sadly, Ellen had a commitment, so our conversion was short lived, and I was left to my own thoughts, which were then focused on what to have. It was tough deciding what to choose. I began with the lamb meatballs which have a harissa aioli and, I loved this addition, a yogurt foam, and garlic chips. I could live on these meatballs. The flavor combination, the sweetness, the spices, and that foam! These are a rare treat for certain.
I then ordered the steamed Chatham mussels with coconut curry and lime broth. My heart leapt with joy to see this preparation. I am so bored of the white wine sauce versions typically found on the Island. Oh my, and these did not disappoint. The bread served with it was fresh, and lightly buttered perfection. These mussels will be in my summer dining rotation soon.
I also was able to try the crab cakes which were brand new to the menu. Never one to say no to crab, I thoroughly enjoyed these as well. While enjoying them, a fun-loving group sat at the bar. I moved to a new seat, so all five could sit near each other. Of course the group was fun and engaging and offered a totally different experience than taking with Ellen earlier.
However, this group definitely made me laugh, and kept me entertained, and somewhat encouraged me to stay for another cocktail. So, I had Tippi’s favorite cocktail, the Gin- Gin (Gin Ginger) with Tanqueray, fresh ginger juice and pineapple.
It’s nice having a cocktail that makes you feel a little healthy. The ginger was really a nice touch. Though I have to say the Rosemary Cape would be my go-to.
They would’t let me get a group shot sadly, but they’re just one more reason to love the bar at Sweet Life. This OB gem never disappoints and is one of my go-to’s when I need to get away.
I also have to mention that there is a great special at the bar, from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. There $1 Sweetneck Farm oysters! Circuit Ave’s own “buck a shuck.” Not only is this a great deal for one of the best bivalves in the world, but it’s location can’t be beat! Before dinner, after work or running errands, what a great way to start your night.