I recently had the honor of being interviewed by Stephanie DeVaux of Borrowed & Blue, a stunning website where you can imagine, plan, and share the wedding of your dreams. Start planning your wedding by choosing where in the United States you plan on getting married. My husband and I were married almost five years ago on the North Fork at Vineyard Caterers. We couldn’t have imagined a more spectacular day to spend the first day of the rest of our lives together.
“Weddings are all about the couple, and resources galore are dedicated to all things bride or groom. But what about the guests? They’re travelling in for the weekend (to a sometimes unfamiliar city) and need to be able to entertain themselves in the midst of wedding activities. That’s why we are coming to Vanessa for her local recommendations for where guests can grab a bite in the Hamptons. So listen up, wedding guests: here’s the insider scoop on how to navigate Hamptons weddings with style.” – Stephanie, Borrowed & Blue’s Hamptons Market Specialist
Vanessa is a freelance food, travel and lifestyle writer who has lived in and combed the Hamptons all her life. She is considered to be one of the most sought after food and drink experts in the Hamptons with a vast knowledge of insider information regarding where to dine, snag the best deals, and make the most of your Hamptons experience. “I am more than happy to share my tips with visitors to the area. I always like to make sure they experience a true ‘taste of the Hamptons’!”
Here’s my Q&A with Borrowed & Blue
Describe the Hamptons food scene in three words.
Diverse, authentic, and bountiful.
What is your favorite restaurant in the Hamptons overall? What does it have going for it?
I am very fond of East Hampton Grill for their all-around professionalism and consistent, hearty dishes. I am a huge fan of their BBQ ribs, rosemary biscuits with honey, and cole slaw. During the summer months, you can find me at Clam Bar at Napeague for their mouthwatering lobster rolls.
Where’s the best place to grab a cheeseburger?
MJ Dowlings in Noyac, Sag Harbor. It is an off-the-beaten-path locally owned tavern style restaurant with karaoke night and a spacious bar open late most nights with pool tables and a dart board. Order their Bay Point Burger with bacon and avocado. Check out burger night on Thursdays with burgers starting at $9.
Where’s your go-to restaurant for classic Hamptons cuisine?
The Beacon set just above Sag Harbor Cove Yacht Club. All of their dishes are irresistible, including their lobster rigatoni, Scottish salmon, and sesame crusted tuna. Come early for dinner and stay through to sunset. Brunch/lunch is served on the weekends during the summer.
What’s your favorite local spot for Mexican cuisine?
I love La Brisa de Tacombi in the heart of Montauk. I always sit outside and order their crispy local tile fish with watermelon juice.
Where’s the swankiest spot in the Hamptons that would be perfect for an elegant rehearsal dinner?
The 1770 House. Chef Rozzi is “the real deal” and the food is exceptional. The have an intimate, elegant patio in the back for your dining pleasure during the summer months.
What’s the most quintessential Hamptons meal? Where should you order it?
Oysters on the half shell, lobster, and fresh corn on the cob. We have the best corn and freshest seafood in the world. My top go-to spots are Harbor Bistro in East Hampton, The Bell & Anchor in Sag Harbor, and Fishbar in Montauk.
For guests just trying to grab a fast meal, where’s a great local spot to grab something on the go?
For a quick, homemade meal, I run to Espresso in Sag Harbor close to the Long Wharf. It’s also within walking distance to the parks, beaches, and boutique shops along Main Street. I always order their pasta fagioli, European chicken salad, and check out their lunch specials served before 2pm. Penne a la vodka with shrimp is my favorite lunch dish.
A healthy choice is Citarella with locations in Bridgehampton, Southampton, and East Hampton. I love Citarella’s cold pressed juice selection, available year round.
What’s one restaurant that visiting guests should avoid and why?
Any restaurant that has inconsistent hours or just opened around or before Memorial Day Weekend. They are a hit or a miss, and it is best to stick with the high-end restaurants that are open year round (Red Bar in Southampton, and Fresno in East Hampton are great choices).
Any last foodie advice for guests traveling to the Hamptons for a weekend?
Whenever possible, try at least one dish from the specials menu from any restaurant, and look for dishes that incorporate local ingredients. Your palate will undoubtedly be spoiled! Also, if you are on a budget, look out for the Prix Fixe menu found at many restaurants when you dine early (before 6pm) during the weekends. And finally, don’t skip dessert! The Hamptons has some of the best desserts, including crème brûlée, chocolate mousse, and hand-churned ice cream.