Joe Farina reviews local Island eateries while in his car, in his web series “To Go with Joe.”
If you haven’t heard of Joe Farina, you may have heard of “To Go with Joe,” a web show he and a friend, Lucas Pisano, have been producing together for the past six months. It’s a series of food reviews Joe hosts in his car, with a takeout order he eats on camera, and an unscripted, hilarious monologue he delivers without restraint.
He and Lucas both come from a background in film and acting, and “To Go with Joe” is just one of the many projects they’ve pursued. Joe says the goal of the show was originally to act as a food guide for visitors to the Vineyard, so people who’ve never been here before can use it as an honest reference for where to eat on the Island. However, the show has mostly appealed to Islanders so far. In the future, Joe hopes the audience will expand to a larger, more “ambiguous” crowd as he reviews an increasing amount of places off-Island.
Though he doesn’t profit from the show, Joe doesn’t really care about “selling out.” He does the show for free, but has contemplated accepting sponsorships in the future. Right now, it’s just his honest opinion. “I’m not on some mission to change the quality or prices of the food here,” Joe said. He’s not out to destroy anyone’s business either, just to publish his personal take on the food around the Island.
“To Go with Joe” is most importantly a show that appeals to the common man. Joe is Joe who is also an average Joe, who eats takeout in his car, the most bare-boned form of consumption. The show is the opposite of pretentious. Joe makes sure of this, saying, “I’m not like a snobby food critic, ya know?” He also prioritizes getting a good value for his meals, and talks a lot about whether the food is enough food for the price.
With more than 50 reviews and countless tastings around the Island, Joe’s got a lot of Vineyard takeout experience under his belt. If you need food advice, check out some of Joe’s reviews on the “To Go with Joe” Facebook page, or on Instagram: @togowithjoe.
Best sandwich: The Liz Lemon at 7a Foods (West Tisbury)
Best takeout: Back Porch Larder (Airport Business Park)
Least expensive: Tuesday’s Sirloin Special at Ocean View (East Chop)
Best value: Art Cliff Diner (Vineyard Haven)