I don’t know why I do this, but sometimes I do. Sometimes I drive around the main streets of the island, Circuit Ave, Main Street in Edgartown and Vineyard Haven and just think there will be some magical new place to eat. Like some place is going to appear in two days since the last time I drove down the street. Kind of like when your hungry and you go into your refrigerator once looking and then a half hour later you look again thinking a fully cooked steak with an ear of sweet corn and a nice baked potato is going to be sitting on the top shelf for you.
When a new restaurant opens up on the island there is always little “buzz” going around about it, how it is, etc. We don’t have the options here that most do. Lucky Hanks just opened and is located in Edgartown just past Dairy Queen. (Although after reading this you probably won’t care where it is) Lucky Hanks does have a parking lot out back. A definite plus, however the lot is small and was totally full. We were forced to park across the street at the gas station, but I don’t recommend you do this. There were about 8 people total in the restaurant including us and 8 cars in the lot. They must have staff park there too or cars just in there taking up space. Strike One.
I was excited to try Lucky Hank’s. I like the name and I have an Uncle Henry (Hank) who always seems to have Luck on his side. It’s been a while since I have had a true guy lunch. Sit with one of your boys in casual clothes and shoot the breeze while having what you hope is some good chow. That’s what this blog is all about. I totally missed Strike Two. Blew right by me like a Roger Clemens Fastball. Look at the logo. A Carrot in the middle. Carrot ??? What am I a rabbit ??? The mvfoodguy red flag should have went off, but didn’t.
We walked in and I have to say everyone was very nice. In fact we were greeted by a very happy fellow at the door. The waitress was very good and did her best to keep two middle-aged fat guys happy with what they had to offer. The place looks nice inside and is very clean. They have an outside seating area and kind of reminds me a bit of the slice of life in Oak Bluffs. The menu is extremely limited. I mean extremely. To give Hank the benefit of the doubt they just opened so I’m not sure if they are going to be expanding it. Two soups, two Salads and five sandwiches. I don’t need a Cheesecake Factory seventeen pages long menu but this was just too limited for me. We decided both to go with the same thing. New England Clam Chowder and a Lobster Roll. I got an iced tea and my boy started with a coke. I will say right now the iced tea was the best part of the meal.
The waitress brings over an 8 oz. Coke. Are you kidding me lady? Do you see the size of us ?? We take 8 oz. sips. Sure, the bottle looks nice – on a shelf. Wayyy too small. Plus good chance they are getting us for 3 bucks for it. Then the chowder came. It came served in a fancy bowl and was a decent portion. No flavor. It wasn’t bad, but certainly wasn’t good. We kind of looked at each other saying what do you think. Both of gave that little shoulder shrug and said aaaaahhhhhh in disappointment. It was kind of like a chunky style chowder and the ratio of everything else to clams was about 500 to one. Well, at least we have the lobster roll to look forward to.
The lobster rolls came and they actually half way looked appealing. How do you mess up one of the most succulent tasting crustaceans in the ocean ? Well Hank you did it. You messed up the New England lobster roll. When you look at that picture, the only thing I finished was the pickle. I should have ordered a plate of pickles. If I told my mother I ordered a lobster roll and didn’t finish it she would never believe me. It was advertised as a Vineyard must with herb mayo. 18 bucks. Grace Church has the best lobster rolls on the island. They are 15 bucks and three times the lobster meat. I would have walked to Grace Church and paid fifty compared to how this tasted. There was something in the lobster roll that just made it taste, well, not like lobster. Lobster is the best food in the universe. As is. Maybe a little butter, maybe a little Mayo, but this guy killed it. If I closed my eyes and someone fed me that Lobster Roll I would never have guessed what it was. We pretended we liked it and asked the waitress what kind of spices they used to make it. She said oh he puts like twenty different spices into it and the big on is taragon. Twenty different spices ?? Come on. Now I’m no Michelin Chef, but as far as I know tarragon doesn’t go with lobster meat. As for the pasta salad, my sister could make it better – when she was twelve. No flavor. The chowder had no flavor and the lobster roll and way too much overpowering flavors. I still can’t wrap my hands around the fact that I didn’t eat the whole thing.
Now comes the real pain. Sixty bucks without tip. Seventy two with. We certainly weren’t going to punish the server. Wasn’t her fault the Chef tried to change the thousand-year old lobster roll to something it wasn’t. I never mind paying up for good food, but I hate paying Vineyard prices for lousy food.
I don’t wish ill upon Lucky Hanks. I wanted this place to be good. Maybe people will love it. I was disappointed. And I have to say it, Hank is going to need a hell of a lot more than Luck to make it.Follow @mvfoodguy