I’m sure many of you have driven down upper Main Street in Edgartown, and did a double take at Lucky Hank’s. It seemed to pop up over night. Because the building was once a house, I think people were surprised to see it become a restaurant.
Lucky Hank’s is the “baby” of Island restaurateur Doug Smith. Many of you may know him from his years at Nancy’s or the Harbor View. Doug has been a fixture in the Vineyard restaurant scene for a number of years, almost two decades, and he loves the biz.
He does like to cook, and he is pretty good, but he’s leaving the food to the pros, Danny Fingers (sounds like chef for the mob) and Stephen Pond. Doug really enjoys running a restaurant and he’s going to be doing what he does best, finally at his own place.
When he began to live here year round, he really fell in love with the Fall and Winter. The Island really has a sense of community that is unlike any place else. Doug loves that people know each other and are happy to talk and spend time together.
Working nights at the Harbor View were like Cheers episodes, with a similar warmth and camaraderie. The place was filled with laughter and friends. Doug knew that the time had come for him to open a place that would provide a warm, fun, casual dining experience year-round.
Three years ago, Doug started actively looking for a space for his dream. He came close, but as they say, no cigar. Then, this wonderful, cozy house that was zoned commercial came on the market.
He was immediately drawn to its personality and the location, tons of foot and bike traffic in addition to all the cars driving by. He loved the porch, its warm feel, and he even loved the fish that were painted on the stairs leading to the second floor.
He had found his space. He closed May 31st and his restaurant, Lucky Hanks will be opening in the next couple of weeks. He is pretty determined I would say, and I am glad about that, because I think Lucky Hank’s is going to be a great place to eat. A little off the beaten path, parking, and a welcoming feel, it’s like coming home.
Lucky Hank’s? You may think it’s a peculiar name, but it has a lot of significance. Lucky Hank is the main character in Doug’s favorite novel Straight Man, by Richard Russo. Lucky Hank is a protagonist and is good for a lot of laughs. Doug has read the book a number of times, and oh yes, his dog is even named Lucky Hank. With that little bit of background, you can’t help but like the name.
There will be breakfast, lunch, and dinner being served in this quaint space that holds 30 guests. For breakfast, think big, fluffy pancakes, eggs bennie, comforting breakfast eats, all while sipping delicious Chilmark Coffee Company joe.
Lunch will be simple, fresh, and delicious, sandwiches, salads, and the like. For dinner, there will be lots of comfort food items on the menu, like meatloaf, mac & cheese (maybe lobster?), pot pies, the types of things that make you linger at the table with friends a little longer, maybe have another drink just to savor the moment a bit longer.
In case you couldn’t tell, I love these types of restaurants. A space that has housed generations of families since 1910, which now offers a relaxing vibe for enjoying a well-cooked meal.
Some of the elements from the original house are staying. Like the dark wall above the kitchen which is the exposed wood from the original house. You can see wood marked by fire. Wood that was salvaged from some other building’s misfortune. This space has history but is ready for it’s new life.
For the interior, Doug was inspired by the places he and his girlfriend had visited while spending weekends meandering through New England. They would come across these homey, warm places for breakfast that felt good to eat in. The spaces just felt like New England, and that’s what he wants for Lucky Hank’s.
The walls are neutral and some will be lined with comfy banquettes which were upholstered by Island fav Betsy Edge. She also made the throw pillows – yes throw pillows! Sounding more cozy by the minute isn’t it? None of the fabric on the seating or the pillows will match, lending more to a casual feel, a sort of Vineyard Shabby Chic. All lending to a welcoming feel.
The floors are natural color. The bathroom was designed and tiled by Doug himself (he’s pretty proud about it). It features beadboard and tile with colors from rocks you’d find at Lucy Vincent. Doug also tiled the kitchen, and has really been hands on with everything at his restaurant.
The inside of the building has really undergone a major renovation, and part of that is an expansion off the back for outdoor seating. Who doesn’t love outdoor dining? With large French doors opening up to it, the covered back porch is sure to become a coveted space to grab a bite.
Wondering about the front porch? Unfortunately, that won’t be used for dining, those pesky building codes, but there will be a couple of chairs to sit in while you wait for your table. What a great place to sit and people watch!
As I’ve said before, 2012 is the year of restaurants on Martha’s Vineyard. There have been a number of great additions and I’d like to welcome one more. I am looking forward to trying Lucky Hank’s when it opens. I’ve always liked Doug, and I admire him for making his dream happen. I like him even more for really thinking about the people that live here for his restaurant. That thoughtfulness will help him succeed.
Thanks for reading On Point – I hope you enjoyed it. You can find Lucky Hank’s on Facebook. And speaking of social media, don’t forget to “Like” us on Facebook, on follow us on Twitter, Linked In, Pinterest and YouTube.