The Hamptons restaurant scene re-invents itself each season. There are always a dozen or so places that just can’t survive through the desolate winter, throwing in the dishtowel or waving it like a white flag in surrender. But there never seems to be a shortage of new chefs and their backers to jump in and re-inhabit the existing kitchens and dining rooms. Here are a few of the newest contenders.
16 Navy Rd., Montauk
Laid-back Montauk becomes hipper and more fun as each summer beckons. This place is more than a restaurant; it’s aiming for a day-camp vibe with great food. They offer long days and nights on a 200-foot stretch of beach on Fort Pond Bay, with live music and organized activities to keep the children busy while the grownups hang. Executive Chef Paul LeBue (The Beacon, Nick & Toni’s, The Laundry) has created a family-friendly menu with easy-to-do comfort food like Montauk Clam and Corn Chowder, ceviche, Asian Chicken Salad, Lobster Pot Pie, the Navy Burger—with something called bacon marmalade, Truffled Mac and Cheese and parmesan fries. At the bar, you can wash down meatball sliders and kung pao wings with something called a Fort Pond Fog or a Peroni beer on tap.
26 W. Montauk Hwy., Hampton Bays
Hampton Bays is starved for better dining experiences, and this new bistro, the project of Chef Charlie Bishop and his brother Craig, set in the former digs of JT’s Place, seems like the upgrade people are looking for. Bishop spent time cooking with Mario Batali and he’s offering up locally sourced seafood and vegetables in a bright dining room. Interesting options include grilled calamari tubes, jerk pork sandwiches, lamb chops served with pulled shoulder, roasted corn off the cob, yucca fries and a raw bar.
31 Race Ln., East Hampton
This out-of-the-way location may sound familiar because it was The Laundry for years and then The Lodge for a brief time. The restaurant, designed by Norman Jaffe, has been revamped by Rowaida and Jay Plumeri, who have brought back the burgers/chicken/pasta menu.
Grill On Pantigo
203 Pantigo Rd., East Hampton
The restaurant group that brought you the 1770 House and Cittanuova, in the spot that was Wei Fun, has a menu of interesting delights including fried artichokes, roasted fluke, the 1770 House Blend Burger, tavern meat loaf and Wisconsin veal rib chop all in a cozy setting.
Serafina East Hampton
104 N. Main St., East Hampton
Where Matto had a very brief run, this Manhattan pizza and pasta chain puts down roots.
Clemente’s Maryland Crab House
448 W. Lake Dr., Montauk
203 Sag Harbor Tpke., Bridgehampton
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