Sister Ship: Faraway, But Close To Home

Written By: Chris Sleeper | Photography By: Matt Kisiday

Prepare to be taken on an adventure when you sit down at Nantucket’s newest restaurant: Sister Ship inside Faraway Hotel.

The gorgeous downtown restaurant has been packed with drinkers and diners since the day it opened back in July. The sprawling patio is green-screened by perfectly groomed hedges and diverse foliage which creates a little in-town oasis just off of the Centre Street sidewalk. Once you step through those hedges into Sister Ship you’re engulfed with island vibes that celebrate the diversity of “coastal dining.”

In my many years on Nantucket it has become rarer and rarer for island newcomers to understand the intricacies of operating an island restaurant. My recent experience at Sister Ship proved to me that this team and its chef have taken time to interpret what can sometimes be a complicated little restaurant world out here. It can be a long and strenuous process toward understanding “island casual,” but not here inside the Faraway Hotel.

We started at the bar with a round of tequila drinks which instantly became my favorite tequila cocktail on the island. It’s a spicy play on a margarita without being too complicated; it’s what you want to start your evening with after a day at the beach. As the sun went down and the dimly lit room came to life it became a spectacle to watch. The room is handsomely designed from floor to ceiling and stretches long like the hull of a ship. Its crew moves throughout with intent and don’t take themselves too seriously. They’re having fun and enjoying what they’re serving their guests.

As we sat for dinner we took two seats that looked back at the busy bar we came from. We let our server take control of our adventure on the Sister Ship and sat back to enjoy the ride. The food was incredible and what impressed us the most was the use of local ingredients. Through both the staff’s knowledge of the ingredients and the flavors it was made abundantly clear there was a passion for local and seasonal flavors. He may be new to the island, but Chef Will Harris has made it a point to cultivate relationships with local farmers and makers right from the jump.

This group is doing it right and I’m here for it. Each dish tasted as if every element was either in the ground or the sea just the day before. The respect for Fog Town Farm beets, Washashore shishitos, and all of our local shellfish was making diners across the whole room happy; we could see it and smell it in the air. I’d go deeper into detail about each dish, but it likely won’t be on the menu much longer. Why? Because, Will and his team want what’s hyper-fresh and hyper-seasonal to dictate the nightly menus.

You cannot go wrong with any adventure on the Sister Ship, so stop in soon for either a beverage on the patio or a beautiful local dinner inside. They’re open for dinner Tuesday-Saturday and plan to sail deep into the winter.

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