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Martha's Vineyard Blog

July 10th, 2012 | + | 1 Comment

When planning for a cocktail party or an intimate gathering, summer cheese plates and respective pairings are the way to win hearts and take your guests’ on a perfect pairing palate journey.


Our friend, Mark Venette from Black Sheep/Trio is the perfect local Martha’s Vineyard artisanal cheese monger and charcuterie to help educate and expand our palates while offering great entertainment décor options.


Three important elements Mark considers before making his cheese selections: textures, flavor contrasts  & cheese accompaniments should always be complimentary not contrasting. Depending upon the size of your summer gathering, cheese plates usually present 3 to 5 selections.



– While considering the summer heat, Mark recommends the Rougette Bavarian style Brie because no matter the temperature or location, this beautiful triple cream will not run all over. The texture is slightly different and pairs beautifully with fresh fruits or a paste.  Apricots are always a lovely summer accompaniment.



Perfect Pairing: French Chardonnay – Nicolas Reserve



– Americans do it better! We may think English Cheddar is the way to go, but this cheese tends to be a little creamier. American cheddars tend to be dryer and more crumbly.  Beechers Flagship Reserve – Seattle


Perfect Pairing: Nice Summer Red – Yali Cabernet/Carmenere, Chile




– A firm cheese with a wonderful nutty flavor.  The Ewephoria Sheep’s milk Gouda absolutely lives up to it’s name and brings culinary euphoria with every savory bite.


Perfect Pairing: Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc –

Bianchi Sauvignon Blanc, CA


Blue Cheese – Smokey Blue Cheese

-A smokey blue cheese with Black Sheep’s homemade bacon onion jam is an absolutely mind-blowing combination sure to be a crowd pleaser.


Perfect Pairing: California Chardonnay –  Bianchi Chardonnay, CA

(Not a Chardonnay fan, no worries!  Try a Spanish white – Destinos Bianco)



Charcuterie – MEATS

With any charcuterie choice the meat should be placed at room temp until the golden glistening indicator appears on the meat.  Once that beautiful sheen is spotted, your charcuterie is ready to be served.



Proscuitto, Serrano Ham, Salami’s & do NOT forget the pate! Black Sheep’s Chicken Liver Mouse Pate with bourbon soaked cherries will create a feeding frenzy so be sure to buy a little more than anticipated!


Another meat, we must mention is the Mangalica Ham, which is a wintery wooly pig that is a cross between a sheep and a pig. This charcuterie choice will absolutely melt in your mouth.


Backyard/Patio Entertaining

– Mark’s Top Recommendations: Create a beautiful arrayment of cheeses, charcutier and fruit.  Consider using butcher paper to cover your tabletop and treat your guests to a culinary map of perfect palate pairings. Use a marker to label selections and draw arrows to exceptional pairings!



Boat/Yacht Entertaining

– Top Recommendations:  A firmer cheese, salamis’, dips and spreads.  Keep your culinary choices in easy portable containers that are arranged accordingly and ready to rock once you step aboard the deck.

For more information and culinary expertise, stop in at Black Sheep/Trio on S. Summer in Edgartown and talk to Mark or his wonderful staff to create the perfect pairings for your summer party.


July 4th, 2012 | + | 1 Comment

Patriotic – pa·tri·ot·ic – (adjective)Having or expressing devotion to and vigorous support for one’s country

Whether entertaining a large party or just family and friends, here are some patriotic culinary ideas that we will be serving and sipping on this fabulous 4th of July!



Apps & Anchors Away

Watermelon & Feta

Cool, Refreshing & Looks Fantastic (Check out Recipe Details Here)


Garden Fresh Herbed Cucumber Bites

What’s more refreshing than lemon, cucumber & mint?  (Check out Recipe Details Here)


Onion Jam and Goat Cheese Toasts

Carmelized onions on top of goat cheese and organic toasts, yes please!  (Check out Recipe Details Here)


Some delicious and refreshing cocktails we will be sipping on while celebrating America today


Red, White & Blueberry
 On the Rocks

Grey Goose, Soda Water & Fresh Local Berries


GBA Kiroyale

Veuve Clicquot, Dash of Chambord & Local Berries


Watermelon Firecracker

Don Julio Tequila, Lime Juice, Triple Sec, Watermelon puree, fresh basil and the secret ingredient, a little dash of your favorite balsamic reduction


Berry Patriotic Ice

Throw some of your favorite local berries in an ice cube tray, freeze and viola a berry patriotic ice-cold beverage.




June 29th, 2012 | + | Leave a Comment


What brought me to the Vineyard and why did you stay?

I was born and raised on the Vineyard so this beautiful island is home to me. I moved off for college and lived in both Fort Lauderdale, FL and Greenwich, CT for awhile after. Up until last March I was living in CT in transition with jobs and was approached with an job opportunity, on the Vineyard. As much as I loved where I was living and being in the “real world” I had greatly missed home and being close to my family, whom all reside on the vineyard year round. So my decision wasn’t too difficult to make. Theres no place like I home, I guess…



What does your perfect Vineyard day look like?

Starting the day off with a walk on the beach with my pomeranian pup, Winnie, Breakfast at State Road with friends. Spending couple hours in the sunshine at one of the many fabulous beaches we’re surrounded by, late afternoon run through the State Forest, and ending the day with a BBQ/Clam Boil on Menemsha Beach with family and friends, watching the sunset.



How long have you worked for Landvest and what attracted you to real estate on MV?

I have worked at Landvest as an assistant for 6 months, so fairly new to the company. I recently completed the real estate course at Dukes Academy and in the process of getting my salesperson license. In the short time I have been here, I have learned a tremendous amount. There are many dynamics involved in real estate (advertising, sales, photography, accounting) and I love that each day comes with a new and exciting challenge.  I look forward to increasing my knowledge and experiencing what lies ahead.


If you could spend the rest of your life in just one place where would it be?

I would definitely say the Vineyard, probably Oak Bluffs or Edgartown because they both offer a little bit of everything.



What is the most magical part of the Vineyard in your opinion?

The surroundings. The amount of pristine beauty to experience on this island is endless. Whether exploring the serenity of up island or strolling through the quaint “downtown”, there never seems to be a dull moment. The island is a treasure and I’m very appreciated that this place is my home.



June 27th, 2012 | + | 1 Comment

New to market on the famous downtown residential streets, is an Early 1900’s antique home located in the heart of Edgartown Village.  Nestled on a corner lot, this four bedroom, two bath home offers cozy and comfortable spaces. With all the conveniences of living in walking distance to restaurants, beaches, and shopping this home boasts a central location with real privacy.



A large master bedroom, renovated kitchen and bath, additional guest room and living room with fireplace comprise the first floor.



Two additional bedrooms and full bath make up the second floor.   Great rental history and only steps to Fuller Street Beach.



The outdoor living spaces are adorned with a brick patio, shed, enclosed shower and yard, all beautifully landscaped.



Total Rooms: 7

Beds/Baths: 4/2

Furnished: Furnished


Square Feet: 1595


For more information email:

Stacy Ickes –


June 24th, 2012 | + | Leave a Comment

This season’s first scorching heat wave definitely got us in the mood for summer – we left work on Friday craving a classic summer day of beach, friends, sunsets, seafood, and all the good stuff that comes along with it.  We also thought you might want to come along – this is our Saturday in photos….from early AM beach walk to a PM sunset – we’re treating ourselves to a day of leisure and taking in the island one stunning spot at a time. Enjoy!


8:00 AM: Beat the morning heat and got in a walk on one of our favorite beaches, State Beach.


9:20 AM: Pull off on the way to the boat to on of our secret spots to snap a photo of two of our favorite Tall Ships, the Shenandoah & the Alabama


9:30 AM: Pick Up an off island friend from the boat to bring along on our Saturday island jaunt – fresh eyes make everything more exciting!


9:35 AM: Do the classic ‘wait & wave’ for all the new-comers heading off the ferry.


10:30 AM: Soak in a few hours at Inkwell in Oak Bluffs and watch the crowd build.


12:00 PM: Stroll through Ocean Park and the Campgrounds – trying to decide on lunch…


12:20 PM: Decide an island-brewed Off Shore Ale beer will help us in the decision making for lunch – we get their new Amity Island Ale (delicious – you must try)

1:00 PM: We decided to extend lunch..and make it an adventure. Coop De Ville steamers at 1:00 PM in Oak Bluffs on the shimmering harbor…then…


1:45 PM: Rented a moped (we’ve never done this before) from Sun ‘N’ Fun and head into Edgartown for Bloody Marys & lobster rolls on the Seafood Shanty deck (great idea – we know).

4:00 PM: Headed Back to Oak Bluffs – picked up our car and decided to explore Up Island and work off our lunch a bit (we did have two!). We took the windy roads to Menemsha Hills and hiked till we reached on favorite spot on the island…this cliff lookout never gets old.


6:00 PM: Alley’s General store, the oldest store on the island, for some refreshments, snacks and maybe some shopping. We love all their treasures and novelties….we leave with more than refreshments & snacks – can’t leave empty handed!


8:00 PM: Decide an Oak Bluffs sunset is the sunset for us – we watch the colors slowly change on the Oak Bluffs Harbor then head to ….


8:30 PM: …Park Corner Bistro for some small places and one of our top 3 favorite cocktails – The  famous Espresso Martini – we’re not ready for bed yet!  Small plates of Portobello Fries & Mussel Croquettes cap off the day…


9:00 PM: Driving home to Edgartown on Beach Road and we look to our right and see this….


And that’s a wrap – another perfect Saturday on Martha’s Vineyard….and the best part…there are more to come.

June 20th, 2012 | + | Leave a Comment

Located in the heart of Katama you will find this impressive home.  The custom design has more than 3800 square feet and offers an open floor plan.

All major rooms are accessed from the central living room with a circular staircase.

The interior boasts wonderful light, hardwood floors throughout, a gourmet kitchen with breakfast nook, two bedrooms and three and a half baths.

The second and third floors provide multiple decks to enjoy the incredible views and sunsets overlooking Katama Bay.


Square Feet (ELA): 3873

Total Rooms: 7

Beds/Baths: 2/3.5

Furnished: Furnished



For more information email:

Stacy Ickes –

June 17th, 2012 | + | 2 Comments


What brought you the Vineyard and why did you stay?

‘I grew up in Michigan. I had friends that had come to work on the Vineyard in 1990 and recommended I come the following year. So in April of 1991, I packed my bags for the unknown and headed East. I worked at Edgartown Marine that summer and lived on South Summer Street above Very Vineyard. That August, Hurricane Bob came for a visit which resulted in meeting Gery Conover Sr, who owns the Charlotte Inn and his son Gery Jr. who has a restoration company in addition to being the Broker/Owner of LandVest/Conover Real Estate.  Gery Jr. introduced me to clients he was building a house for and I became their nanny for the next 5 years.


After an incredible experience with my second family, they decided to head West. In 1996, I got my real estate license and the rest, as they say, is history..I came to the Vineyard for the summer, and 21 years later, I’m still here living in Edgartown and working on South Summer St – directly across from my very first place I lived on the Vineyard.’


What does your perfect Vineyard day look like?

‘My perfect Vineyard day…..breakfast at The Right Fork Diner for Blueberry pancakes, a little work, a few hours at South Beach, a run in the Caroline Tuthill Trail, a sunset cruise with cocktails on Edgartown Harbor and end the day at the house with amazing local grilled food, wine and a fire on the deck.’




How long have you worked for LandVest and what attracted you to real estate on MV?

‘After 12 years of working at Great Harbor Real Estate I have been with LandVest since the Spring of 2010.

When I realized I wanted to make The Vineyard my home, getting my real estate license was a no-brainer. I love that each day is something different and new and I love the never ending learning. I love connecting with my clients and nothing makes me happier than happy Buyers and Sellers. Real Estate to me is not a job, it is a lifestyle.’



If you could spend the rest of your life in just one place where would it be?

‘If I could spend the rest of my life in one place it would be Edgartown…no explanation necessary ‘




What is the most magical part of the Vineyard in your opinion?

‘The most magical part of the Vineyard is the natural beauty. I remind myself daily, not to take it granted and I am so grateful I get to call this very special place home.’




June 11th, 2012 | + | Leave a Comment

We might be on the cusp of what many are sure will be one of the most beautiful and agreeable summers we’ve experienced in years, however when the summer passes we still strive to live a life of beauty and luxury.  Below are a few of the many stunning properties for sale in the metropolitan Boston area under Christie’s International Real Estate.  We’d say these homes are the city equivalent of a perfect island home.


15 Commonwealth Avenue

More Info here


56 Beacon Street

More info here


111 Beach Street

More Info here


A number of other Boston properties can be found at Christie’s Property Listings. Check back for more of gorgeous luxury properties on the market.

May 29th, 2012 | + | Leave a Comment

And those same 7 reasons why you might consider coming here and staying here…


At the advent of the 2012 season we sit back in a team meeting and say to ourselves – it’s time to open up and let you in. From the downtown Edgartown offices of LandVestMV we bring you a back stage pass to the inner workings of our world, of our island, and of our ‘we’ll-never-leave-MV’ insider favorites.  Everyday we realize how lucky we are to call this place home and to help others find homes here – now it’s time for you to stand in our shoes and see what we see, love what we love, and experience first hand the life and times of Martha’s Vineyard – from a visual pass into some of the most stunning waterfront properties, to a video-tag-along on some of our favorite weekend excursions – LandVestMV is headed full force ahead and hopes you come along for the ride.


7. Dates On Boats

Instead of dinner & a movie – we do a sunset sail…


6. Dinner by the Waves

Instead of dinner inside we do dinner with the tide…


5. Classic New England Style

A good sail can be used for way more than a ride on the water…


4. All Four Seasons

The beach is still the beach in the winter…


3. Legendary Seafood – Award-Winning Restaurants

Nothing is better than bacon & Dom at The Atlantic Fish & Chop House


2. Salty Hair & Sandy Toes

Surrounded by Sea & Shore…


1. Cocktail Hour in a Lighthouse

A cocktail hour to leave anyone speechless…


Tune in for what we’re positive will be a wonderful summer and project – LandVestMV welcomes you to this new online ‘space’ of ours….Cheers to Summer! Follow us on Facebook for minute to minute updates from the island!




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