Fully Committed: 5 Ways to Actually Get Into a Restaurant This August

5 Ways to Actually Get Into a Restaurant This August

Summer 2021 is Nantucket’s busiest yet, by far. The sidewalks are packed, there’s no parking at your once “secret beach,” shortcuts no longer exist, and acquiring reservations at one of the island’s fine dining establishments is nearly impossible. I say nearly because where there is a will, there is a way. Here are a few suggestions for dining out on Nantucket in August.

  1. Be really nice. Working in a restaurant is hard work. Working in a restaurant on Nantucket in the summer could be the hardest work…pre-pandemic. Now, island restaurant workers are arguably facing the greatest challenge they’ll ever face. If you begin by being really nice and a little bit empathetic, your chances of getting in improve astronomically.

  2. Go talk to someone in person. Start by creating a relationship. We choose this industry because we want to serve you. I recommend popping into a restaurant between 12 p.m. – 3 p.m. to see if anything has shifted that day. Sometimes things change right before you walk up and if you take a note from #1 karma could be on your side.

  3. Sit at a bar. Almost all bars on island are first come first served. With a bit of patience you’ll be sitting in no time. I say this because a 30 minute wait is honestly just one drink, an hour is two. Enjoy the atmosphere.

  4. Just walk in. Things change throughout the night; people no-show, reservations shift, someone moves to the bar, you just never know. If it doesn’t work out, there are plenty of spots in town that take walk-ins. Try Afterhouse, Sister Ship, Straight Wharf bar, Lobster Trap, Sandbar, and many more.

  5. Lastly, the easiest way to get into a restaurant is to get to work.  Every single restaurant on Nantucket could use an extra hand right now. So, if you’re feeling up for it, offer to help a couple nights a week. The industry is facing it’s toughest challenge ever and Nantucket is booming. In most cases the island’s restaurants are doing double the business with half of the staff. A little help goes a long way!

If none of the above work out; keep trying, but always with #1 in mind. Please enjoy the remainder of the summer with patience, understanding, and a boatload of kindness.

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