One thing to consider while planning your trip to Martha’s Vineyard is where to grocery shop. While the Island does offer several large grocery stores, some of the freshest local produce and meats are being sold at smaller markets across the Island. Beat the long lines, discover new flavors, and shop local by choosing one of these unique food markets during your stay on Martha’s Vineyard:
Edgartown Meat & Fish. This unique gourmet grocer is considered the Island’s jack of all trades and for good reason! Edgartown Meat & Fish offers fresh seafood, prime meat, prepared foods, fresh sushi, groceries, and is the only place on the Island that serves Starbucks coffee drinks. This market is a must-stop if you’re near Edgartown and are spending your day at the beach or having a backyard barbecue.
Grey Barn. The farm stand at Grey Barn in Chilmark just recently got a big upgrade and is definitely worth a stop-by if you haven’t been this season. Grey Barn offers organic fresh bread baked in-house, cheeses, eggs, meats, raw milk, and veggies, all straight from the Farm! Visit for its fresh provisions and say hello to the farm stand’s bunny, Scooby, while you’re there.
Vineyard Grocer. This Brazilian market is in Vineyard Haven and is wonderfully unique for quite a few reasons. Not only is Vineyard Grocer affordable, but it also prioritizes wellness with its products. You will find a lot of gluten-free and vegan options at this market. Also offered is a very large selection of natural supplements and an even larger international section. The best part is that Vineyard Grocer is one of the only grocers on the Island to deliver to your door!
North Tisbury Market. Located on State Road in West Tisbury, this small market promotes sustainable farming and responsibly sourced foods. North Tisbury Market works with local producerss to curate a beautiful selection of fresh goods, ranging from locally sourced meats, delicious frozen treats, and even produce from their very own farm!
Katama General Store. Considered a “Beach Bodega”, the Katama General Store is just a short walk from downtown Edgartown and has all the necessities for a day at the beach. They offer everything from beach chairs, beach toys, umbrellas, towels, sunscreen, and sunglasses, and that’s just the beginning! Spend an afternoon in the shade on their wraparound porch with a sandwich and a coffee, or head out for a view of the sunset on the beach with a bottle of wine and charcuterie set-up. The Katama General Store is a stock-full of products to make sure your family has the best trip to Martha’s Vineyard.
Healthy Additions. This health store in Vineyard Haven is located just behind its sister company, Cronig’s Market. Healthy Additions provides a wide variety of natural supplements, organic snacks, and bulk herbs, spices, and teas. This store is a perfect stop if you’re looking for natural remedies or looking to switch to a healthier routine. With a vast knowledge about the products offered, the welcoming staff is ready to assist anyone. The store has two floors, and even has organic food and treats for your pet!
Morning Glory. Having served the Island since 1975, Morning Glory is a family-owned farm based in Edgartown that grows a variety of vegetables and fruits on its 120 acres of farmland. Their farmstand is open from May to December, and offers a variety of fresh produce ranging from sweet corn to fresh garden herbs, to beach plums! There is even a daily menu of fresh-baked quiches, muffins, and breads along with grab-and-go items such as sandwiches and salads. Morning Glory’s farm stand is a great place to visit with the entire family, especially if you’re hungry!
Chilmark General Store. If you find yourself up Island, the Chilmark General Store provides local produce and household necessities while also serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily. This community market is just down the road from Beetlebung Corner and prioritizes stocking its shelves with sustainably sourced products. It is best known for its hand-tossed pizza, which happens to be one of the best slices on the Island, and its grab and go sandwiches - perfect in a pinch on the way to the beach!
Rosewater. Open year-round, Rosewater Market offers an affordable menu of simple but delicious breakfast and lunch dishes, as well as a selection of local homeware products. Located in historic downtown Edgartown, Rosewater is a great spot to grab a coffee, get some work done or to grab a gift for a friend!
Ghost Island Farm. This farm stand in West Tisbury doubles as a community co-op and offers a variety of fresh produce grown directly on the farm. They recently opened an outdoor “mini farm stand” where members and walk-ins can come shop in person! They also have a wonderful online ordering system, making it easy for those who would rather do curbside pickup.
Black Sheep. Located right by the Martha’s Vineyard Airport, this gourmet marketplace serves those just arriving on the Island, local workers, and vacationers on their way to the beach. It offer breakfast sandwiches and coffee in the mornings and takeaway salads and sandwiches for lunch. Make sure to check out Instagram for updates on delicious specials! There is even a small grocery section for household necessities and seasonal snacks and decor. Masters of charcuterie, Black Sheep also does catering for events big or small.
The Larder. This farm stand in Vineyard Haven doubles as a community kitchen and offers fresh ingredients from Island farms and businesses. The commercial kitchen is available to rent by the hour, making the Larder a common space for pop-up events. The Larder offers fresh local meats from The GOOD Farm and even sell fried chicken sandwiches every Friday!
Soigne. Located on Upper Main Street in Edgartown, Soigne is a gourmet grocer offering a large selection of boutique wines, fresh-baked pastries, snacks, and boxed lunches to-go. You can check out the lunch menu on its website. Sandwiches are made from fresh ingredients, and the freshly baked French bread has received stunning reviews. Even better, Soigne does catering for events, whether it be a cocktail party or intimate dinner.
Alley’s General Store. The oldest retail business on Martha’s Vineyard happens to be based in West Tisbury, just across from the library. Currently under renovation and closed for the season, Alley’s General Store is considered an Island icon, and serves as a gathering spot for locals and visitors alike. Alley’s reputation over the years has been “dealer’s in almost everything”, offering a large variety of produce, snacks, candies, household goods, souvenirs, and more. If you’re planning a trip to the island next year, make sure Alley’s is on your to-do list!
It may be hard to decide with all of these wonderful options, but shopping local at these unique food markets supports families, small businesses, and the general Island community. Plus, you could spend much less time waiting in line, and more time making meaningful connections over delicious fresh food.
One thing to really appreciate about the island of Martha’s Vineyard is the fact that it’s a blending pot of many cultures. In the summers, the Island attracts people from all over the world to work, vacation, and potentially even find their forever home. But well before the Island caught the eyes of hundreds of thousands of tourists per year, the Island, much like the majority of New England, was home to the slave trade and segregation
Founded in 1998, the African American Heritage Trail is a nonprofit whose mission is to uncover the unspoken past about people of color on the Island. The main focus of the organization has always been to educate. Consequently, much time has been spent working with Island schools to disseminate an accurate and inclusive history that previously went undocumented.
In fact, the most recent site is actually the only monument on the Vineyard dedicated to enslaved people and created by children. Located at the Martha’s Vineyard Public Charter School in West Tisbury, The Nameless Trail remembers those who lost their names through the crime of enslavement. Grades 5 and 6 at the Charter School were big contributors to the project, painting rocks to honor those who had no names during their enslavement on the Island.
The Nameless Trail is only one stop on the African American Heritage Trail. With over thirty sites across the Island (even on Chappaquiddick), the Trail dedicates these sites to the formerly unrecognized contributions made by people of African descent to Island history. The nonprofit offers a variety of driving and walking narrated tours, which provide “hands-on'' experiences of the African American Heritage Trail’s work and mission. You can sign up for a tour with the whole family on the African American Heritage Trail website.
Make your trip to Martha’s Vineyard both educational and exciting with a tour around the African American Heritage Trail. Some sites include Inkwell Beach in Oak Bluffs, Edgartown Harbor (which is now recognized as part of the Underground Railroad), the fishing village of Menemsha, and more. You can see a full list of sites here.
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