Well the Summer season is off and running in the Hamptons, although as I shovel the snow from my driveway you wouldn’t know it! Yes, the sex scandals (Vasectomy Fever) and celebrity misadventures are already hitting the web and Page Six. But other than real estate the only topic worthy of lengthy conversation is the new restaurants, at least in my humble opinion.
By now many of you know there are a slew of highly touted arrivals including, Eleven Madison Park and Le Bilboquet coming to the east end. What you may not know is there are a few more new eateries that are also causing a buzz among the Hamptons regulars.
The first is the newly revamped Maidstone Hotel on Main Street. Partners and Alchemy a boutique hotel and restaurant management group has taken over management of the
village landmark and given it much welcome facelift. With a freshly trained staff and revised and diverse menu from Chef David Standridge of NYC’s Cafe Clover, it’s a change for the better. Gone are the Swedish meatballs and plethora of salmon dishes and instead you have more accessible menu dishes including local fare such as scallops, fresh fish, burgers and roast chicken. Lots to choose from here.
But for me the biggest standouts from my dinner were the freshly baked popovers, butter lettuce salad with roasted beets and tarragon and the seared Montauk fluke. Prices are pretty much on par with most places around town with entrees averaging in the $30 range. Also worth noting is the huge shrimp cocktail. Huge shrimp… that cracks me up! But i digress. Between the fresh new atmosphere, attentive staff and diverse menu it’s really worth the trip! Oh, and if you’re on a non-carb diet the popovers are worth a cheat day! SERIOUSLY!
The other entry on this weeks blog is the newly opened “Cove Hollow Tavern.” The owners of Shelter Islands hugely popular Vine Street Cafe have moved
into the spot of the former Cafe Max on Montauk Highway in East Hampton. The menu features some interesting items including for ahi tuna crudo with watermelon and chilies; haricot vert salad; snail and squid ink spaghetti with snails and fennel. While my gang ordered the Grilled Atlantic Snapper and Seared Diver Scallops, I was a little less adventurous and ordered the roasted organic chicken. Now, while I’m a big fan of Vine Street I was a little disappointed in the “CHT.” So were all of my companions. It wasn’t bad but it wasn’t great and there was nothing really compelling for me to advise running there anytime soon. Granted it’s a brand new restaurant so give them time and hopefully they’ll get their game on. By the way, the interior while very intimate is spectacular and the bar space is inviting and spacious. I have no problem heading to Vine Street which between the drive and a ferry is well worth the trip. So here’s hoping “CHT” is as good as it’s sister restaurant in the near future.