August 16, 2013 | by Madison Cowan
August 16, 2013
Nick & Toni’s serves simple seafood caught that very day.
“We grew up on same-day-sourced seafood,” says cofounder Sean Barrett of Dock to Dish, the Hamptons’ new community-sponsored fishing cooperative, which presents members with a weekly shipment of fish filets.
The fresh catch also makes its way to diners’ plates at Nick & Toni’s. A fish caught on any given day will likely be served as that night’s dinner special. Barrett trusts Executive Chef Joseph Realmuto to showcase the ocean bounty: “Joe speaks the language of fresh fluently,” he says. Nick & Toni’s, 136 N. Main St., East Hampton, 324-3550
August 15, 2013
Roasted free-range half chicken with shaved carrots and almond and currant salad at Byron at The Surf Lodge.
Australia’s Byron Bay in New South Wales might be across the globe from Montauk, but according to Highlands Restaurant Group partner Brian McGrory, the town is flush with parallels to its American counterpart. “Byron is one of the most intimate fishing towns in Australia,” says McGrory. “Montauk is similar—it has a vibrant nightlife and holistic aspects.”
Luckily, the executive chef (and partner) of Byron at The Surf Lodge, Melbourne-born Chris Rendell, is able to tease out the similarities: Crab linguine stirred with tomato confit, red chili, and oregano; black-pepper-crusted chilled tuna; and a grilled whole fish drizzled in lemon herb oil and garlic round out the menu’s mostly reeled-in-this-morning selections—all befitting Montauk’s roots as a cozy fishing village.
More unexpected dishes, such as a Thai-basil-spiked coconut crab laksa and a summer squash yellow curry are cornerstones of what McGrory refers to as “Australasian” cuisine, developed from the island nation’s proximity to the Asian continent. “There are a lot of influences from China, Singapore, Thailand, and Malaysia,” says McGrory. “You get this great hybrid that has that simple element to it but also a beautiful Asian accent.”
For this type of unconventional cuisine, McGrory finds Montauk to be the perfect home. “[Montauk] is a really unique place unlike the rest of the Hamptons,” he says. “You could be in Brazil or Australia, not just two and a half hours from New York.” The Surf Lodge, 183 Edgemere St., Montauk, 483-5039
PHOTOGRAPHY BY ADRIAN BARRY
August 14, 2013
The seasonally revolving menu at the year-round Lunch Truck (which was painted by local artist Rita Rooney) attracts daily crowds with its 100 percent wild-caught lobster roll, grassfed beef and black bean chili from McCall Ranch, and free-roaming, organic, spicy chicken posole. “We felt that the area was in need of more lunch options and The Lunch Truck is another creative outlet for us,” says Managing Partner Mike Mraz. “It provides a venue for people to get great food that they can take with them to the beach, the wineries, home to the kids, or just to sit out back on a blanket for a picnic.” 57225 Main Road, Southold, 765-0177; northforktableandinn.com
August 13, 2013
“The main focus for me was keeping it simple and relating to what my friends and I would enjoy [eating] while having a good time in Montauk,” says Ruschmeyer’s new Executive Chef Brian Loiacono, who tapped the talented team behind Manhattan’s The Smile to man the boutique East End hotel’s kitchen. Loiacono looked to his experiences at Michelin-starred institutions, including Daniel and Le Manoir, for Ruschmeyer’s menu, which now includes inspired dishes such as whole-wheat penne with peas and local vegetables. “It is a perfect mid-summer dish because of how unexpectedly light it is,” says Loiacono. “There is no butter or cream; we use fresh puréed peas as our sauce.” The pasta is topped with seared fresh East End scallops and cut with fresh ginger juice, a trick Loiacono learned from cooks in Verona, Italy. 161 Second House Road, Montauk, 668-2877; kingandgrove.com