Nina’s, Nina’s Everywhere: Brazilian Food Abounds on Martha’s Vineyard

You may have seen some recent activity at the take-out window at the Square Rigger in Edgartown and wondered what the buzz was all about. Or maybe you’ve driven by the old home of Chef Amy’s Food Truck on Vineyard Haven and noticed a fancy new culinary outpost with heaters and a deck. Or maybe you noted the “Nina’s Dine and Dash” sign outside The Ritz Cafe in Oak Bluffs. Better yet, we hope you’ve visited all three locations, which are now home to Nina’s.

Nina’s is serving up some savory offerings and Brazilian favorites across three different towns and we have loved to see this delicious little empire grow. We first noticed Nina’s as a food vendor at the Ag Fair back in August, with the amazing aromas of grilled meats and the allure of long lines and happy faces. When we noticed them popping up all over the island these last several months we had to get to the bottom of what exactly was happening and how it was all coming together.

Nina’s on Beach Road is located in Vineyard Haven between Wolf’s Den Pizza and the Net Result.

Nina’s Nina’s Everywhere: Brazilian Food Abounds on Martha’s Vineyard

We had the pleasure of meeting with Sandro Silvio of Nina’s, a super motivated, super hard-working, super nice guy. When we reached out for an interview Sandro invited us to Nina’s on Beach Road, the Vineyard Haven location appropriately positioned on Beach Road, positioned between Net Result and Wolf’s Den Pizzeria. The restaurant is housed in a mobile food trailer, with a take-out window and several outdoor tables built on a platform, with heaters nearby for cold-weather dining. 

It was a sunny winter afternoon and despite managing three different restaurants, and having a million other things to do, he took the time to speak with us and share the story of Nina’s. We happily obliged and enjoyed some scrumptious eats while we did it.

The Nina’s outpost in Oak Bluffs is located on Circuit Avenue inside The Ritz.

Nina’s Nina’s Everywhere: Brazilian Food Abounds on Martha’s Vineyard

Sandro has been on-Island for three years. Previous to Martha’s Vineyard he spent years working in New York City as a private health inspector, a position that changed dramatically in the wake of COVID. Right around that time, he was asked by the chef/owner of Golden Bull, a friend of his from New York City, to help run the Brazilian steakhouse. Sandro stayed at Golden Bull for two years before leaving to take over the kitchen of the Cardboard Box in the off-season of 2022, where he was offering Brazilian food for drop-off, and fulfilling catering orders, serving upwards of 200 to 300 plates a day! 

At a party last summer he was asked by Larkin Stallings of The Ritz, to take over The Ritz kitchen. In a matter of days, he had moved Nina’s operation just one door down and was able to make it official! Around the same time the business purchased a trailer and signed up to be a food vendor at the Ag Fair. Nina’s already had a strong business from the drop-off and catering clients that had amassed from the Cardboard Box kitchen and Sandro knew he could bring great fair food to the people! And for inquiring minds, yes, Nina’s is named after a real girl. “Menina” also means girl in Portuguese!

Nina’s in Edgartown is available at the Square Rigger.

Nina’s Nina’s Everywhere: Brazilian Food Abounds on Martha’s Vineyard

Over the last several months Nina’s had the opportunity to move the trailer to its permanent home on Beach Road and take over the Square Rigger, an Edgartown Seafood staple, that they intend to pay homage. For now, Sandro’s team is serving up Brazilian staples from the window at the Square Rigger but soon they’ll be offering a full dining experience inside the restaurant, with a menu of Square Rigger favorites, Brazilian fare, and what Sandro described as “fancy food.” They’ll be pasta nights (think seafood carbonara and chicken parmigiana), steak nights (think skirt steak with chimichurri and turf and turf with filets!), and more specialty entrees that we cannot wait to try.

When it comes to their Brazilian staples you can’t go wrong. We were treated to a Picanha Sandwich featuring tender strips of savory beef, with lettuce and tomato, drizzled in chimichurri sauce on a baguette. Two giant halves meant one would be eaten later. We also sampled a variety of Nina’s popular appetizers including coxinha, their signature chicken croquette;  cheese puffy, Brazilian cheese bread (naturally Gluten free!) made with tapioca flour, eggs, and cheese; and pastel, a popular street food, crispy fried and bursting with delicious fillings. Plus there are Breakfast Sandwiches on Ciabatta, Cheeseburgers, Steak and Cheese sandwiches, BLTs, Steak Chicken, and more meaty options.

Nina’s Picanha Sandwich offers tender strips of savory beef, with lettuce and tomato, drizzled in chimichurri.

Nina’s Nina’s Everywhere: Brazilian Food Abounds on Martha’s Vineyard

The moral of the story is: get yourself to Nina’s, whichever one you can, and enjoy some of the most delicious Brazilian food that we are lucky to have right here on-island. Just standing outside these kitchens smelling the smells, the meats, the spices, you’ll want to stick around for it all. As Sandro said himself he’s committed to “serving high-quality Brazilian food… the real thing,” and that’s not something you want to pass up.  

Nina’s on Beach Road is open Monday through Saturday 6:30 am to 6 pm

Square Rigger by Nina’s is open Monday through Saturday 6:30 am to 6 pm

Nina’s at The Ritz will be reopening in the spring

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