New Year’s Eve, Vineyard Style – Bowling, Foodie Favs, Dancing & More

For New Year’s eve, I feel like there are two schools of thought. People either really love this night or are less then impressed with the hype. I always tried when I was younger to create fabulous New Year’s Eves but was always left slightly disappointed.

Happy New Year

Now that I have small children, I have a whole new approach. Late in the afternoon, we get a group of people together, kids and parents, and head to Offshore Ale. There we have some munchies, a couple of beers and celebrate all the good stuff that happened during the year.

Then as it gets later, we either go back home or to a party. This year, I am excited to go to my friend’s house. She moved her full-time over the Summer and word has it that she throughs an epic party (kids will be with us too).

So, our celebration as you can see is a little low-key, not too fancy, and kid friendly. It works for us. However, there are a lot of fun things to do on New Year’s Eve on the Vineyard. May I add that this wasn’t always the case.

Bring the New Year in with a Bang

The Harbor View Hotel has created a party that has become, dare I say, the premier way to ring in the New Year. With Joanne Cassidy singing and getting you shaking your booty, a scrumptious array of hors d’oeuvres, and the best part — at midnight, you have a glass of champagne to toast the new year under an impressive display of fireworks.

New Year's Eve at the Harbor View HotelPeople are dressed to impress and it’s a night to remember. Dancing the night away,  fireworks, a wonderful combination, and you can even spend the night! If we did not have little kids, I think this is something we would try.

Keeping It Casual

Perhaps dressing up is not your thing. Not to worry, you have options. This year, the Barn Bowl & Bistro is offering a 3-course prix fixe dinner, and there are some tasty options including filet mignon, with horse radish creme, crispy onions, served with mashed potatoes and veggies. It’s only $42 per person.

The Barn Bowl & Bistro

An added bonus is that you can add on an hour of bowling (including shoes) for $25.

The RitzTheRitz is well known for it’s New Year’s Eve fun. This year, it’s Disco Masquerade. Think about getting a great mask to wear. I automatically think of something from Phantom of the Opera. Johnny Hoy and the Blue Fish play and 8:00 p.m. with DJ Ricky Prime starting at 11:00 p.m. and helping you bring in the New Year.

For the Foodies

A number of Island restaurants offer a special menu for the evening. This night often gives chefs the ability to create something special and truly memorable. Three restaurants that I thought could be good options for dinner on New Year’s Eve are La Soffitta, Isola, and Alchemy.

Our first New Year’s Eve on the Island in 2003 (we moved here in December), was spent at Alchemy. We had a lovely evening, and the food was incredible, and because of that, I have soft sport for this restaurant.


Alchemy is offering two options this year, a 3-course prix fixe dinner ($100) with seatings from 5:30 to 7:15 pm, and a 4-course prix fixe dinner ($120) with seatings from 7:30 to 10 pm.

The menu sounds simply amazing. If I was to choose, this would be my dinner outline. I would start with Island Bay Scallop Ceviche with blood orange, Buddha’s hand confit (a type of citrus), nori, and chive oil followed by the  Asparagus Tip Salad with Black winter truffles, poached duck egg, hollandaise, bacon vinaigrette. These dishes have so many things I love!

For my final course, I would have the Island Lobster Thermidor with red skin potatoes and béarnaise sauce. If you are questioning this hypothetical menu selection, there is one big reason. I have never had Lobster Thermidor, and would want to have this classic dish at least once. And since this all is hypothetical, I would be skipping desert on this night if possible.

Isola is offering a special menu. Chef Jimmy Alvarado has been making magic in the kitchen at Isola. From pig roasts to pho nights to pasta nights. He makes great food, and definitely has fun in the kitchen.


Isola is serving up a 4-course menu ($75.00), which includes a glass of Prosecco. Once again, there are great options, and may I add that writing this is really making me hungry.


I would start with the Oysters Casino with red peppers, yuzu butter, lardon and melted brie, followed by the Pasta Dish, Lobster and Black Pepper Gnocchi with MV Smokehouse tomato vodka sauce, then I would have the Pan Roasted Flounder Oreganata with octopus puttanesca and dehydrated olives.

There’s a braised apple for dessert to follow. With all that good stuff and prosecco, not sure if I would be able to have dessert, but it’s nice that it’s an option.

La Soffitta

La Soffitta is offering an Italian inspired 3-course menu ($100.00). I always love great Italian food. I would have to start with the Antipasto, buffalo mozzarella, a selection of Italian meats, and olives — always a favorite.

La Soffitta

The next course would have to be the Frutti di Mare. A classic with mussels, clams, shrimp, calamari and lobster in a spicy red sauce. This is another one of my favorites. All that seafood and a little spice, YUM!

Dessert would have be the Martini Tutti Frutti – mixed berries and lemon sorbet. This sounds so refreshing and light after all that rich food, and a little whimsical since it is served in a martini glass. And I can’t forget to mention that you get a class of Vueve Cliqout with your meal!

Lookout Taver

These are just a few options for New Year’s Eve. There are many places open for dinner like Beach Road, State Road (closed for brunch that day), Rockfish, Park Corner Bistro, Copper Wok, Chowder Company, Lucky Hanks, and don’t forget that it is the FINAL NIGHT for The Lookout!

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