Helmed by chef and owner Weldon Fizell, the gastronomic gurus at The Regatta of Cotuit infuse a menu of classic ingredients with inventive twists, earning accolades from Zagat, AAA, and Boston magazine. After finding seats in the 218-year-old mansion, taste buds stockpile rich flavors of seared Hudson Valley foie gras garnished with grilled rosemary bread and blackberry-brandy compote to rival luxurious stores inside Fort Knox. Tender Georges Bank sea scallops land on tables with a caramelized coat and an entourage of butternut-squash ravioli and pea tendrils dressed with brown butter. Ovens slowly roast lacquered half ducks to ensure a crispy skin that complements sides of ginger-scallion pancakes and sautéed asian vegetables. A sorbet intermezzo cleanses palates of edible echoes from previous courses before entrees and further represses memories of fallen soufflés from ages past. Postmeal cool downs commence as forks ferry dollops of key-lime mousse into mouths to surprise unsuspecting sweet teeth.
Live music frequently fills the air at The Island Merchant, evoking the freewheeling vacation lifestyle that inspired the menu of Cape Cod Magazine’s Best Chef of 2011. On the menu, tangy fruits play foil to spicy meats: the jerk-chicken skewers laze aside a mango-pineapple coulis, and mango-papaya relish accents the potato-chip-crusted tuna steak. The seaside feel of the eats suits the space. Terra-cotta-colored tiles bedeck the backsplash behind the restaurant’s bar, where overhead woven fans mimic an island breeze or a giant with asthma. The restaurant’s tables surround the bamboo-fronted bar, which glows beneath low, golden lighting.
Whether guests are looking for a quick pint or a satisfying meal, at Tommy Doyle’s three locations, they always find both. Menus are packed with pub favorites such as wings, nachos, and burgers, plus Irish pub standards such as shepherd’s pie and bangers and mash. Throughout the week, team trivia, karaoke, and live music entertain guests or send them into fits of despair when they forget the tune of their favorite ‘80s sitcom theme show.