Art on the Plate: Portside Tavern

Cape Cod Life  /  July 2018 / , , ,

Writer: Allyson Plessner / Photographer: Elizabeth Shaw and Teagan Anne 

“I like the craftmanship of cooking. We make our own mozzarella. We grind our own sausage, proof our own breads and make our own stocks. To me, it’s about actually cooking the food from scratch and the satisfaction of knowing that somebody appreciated that.” – Chef: Mike Crowell-Hall

Portside Tavern scallops

Dry George’s Bank scallops with spring vegetables, crispy prosciutto chips, shallot and citrus breadcrumbs over a blanched asparagus purée

Owner: Bob Murphy • Chef: Mike Crowell-Hall

Portside Tavern sits somewhat off the beaten path on North Street in Hyannis, but that doesn’t stop this restaurant from being a vital part of the surrounding community. “There’s a lot of great restaurants over here, and we’re happy to be part of it,” says co-owner Bob Murphy. “We want to be another one of those places that people come to get a great meal, a great atmosphere, and enjoy Hyannis.”

Owners Bob and Patty Murphy describe Portside as “family owned and family friendly.” “I just love the people,” says Patty. “We have people come in that I feel like I’ve known forever. They just become part of the fiber of the place, and I love that my wife and I and our son get to work together. We never fight,” adds Bob with a laugh.

Executive Chef Mike Crowell-Hall aims to capture that family-style atmosphere while still creating creative, seasonal menu options. “I never envisioned the type of food that Mike prepares,” says Bob. “It’s unique to anything else I’ve experienced.” Crowell-Hall’s goal is to consistently use local ingredients that fit with the feeling of each season. “I always try to focus on what’s good about New England and about the Cape,” he says.

One of the main features of the bar is a large projector, where visitors can watch various sporting events. Even Bob says he has to stop sometimes to enjoy a game. “We’re a tavern. Above all, we want people to be comfortable,” Crowell-Hall says about the atmosphere at Portside. “We have this beautiful old building. We want people to come in and feel comfortable and like they can come with their kids or big groups and leave being happy with their plate and experience.”

Portside Tavern

72 North Street, Hyannis


Allyson Plessner

Allyson Plessner is a former editorial intern for Cape Cod Life and now works for the publication as a staff writer and digital media coordinator. Born in Florida, Allyson has been a lifelong summer resident of the Cape. She is a recent alumna of the College of Charleston, located in Charleston, South Carolina, where she completed bachelor’s degrees in both English and Spanish. In her free time, Allyson is an avid sailor, beach-goer, and—like her fellow Cape Cod Life colleagues—a dog-lover.