Dine Alfresco at These Lovely East End Restaurants
Spring is here, and so is the return of outdoor dining. Check out some of our favorite East End restaurants, all of which have one thing in common: outdoor spaces that will transport you straight from the East End to the botanical vista of your dreams. Read on for some of our favorite places to sit outside this spring.
Since 1996, Christian Mir and his wife, Elaine DiGiacomo, have been elevating the Quogue dining scene at the Stone Creek Inn. Although the indoor dining room is its own treasure to behold, spring and summer diners can also enjoy the gorgeous outdoor environs underneath a tent, which is lit by Edison bulbs and which has an unobstructed view of the property’s tall trees and green grasses. There, guests can enjoy the restaurant’s signature tuna tartare, made with fresh ginger, soy sauce, and wasabi caviar (or with a supplemental 10 grams of Siberian Supreme caviar); grilled Portuguese octopus with roasted grape tomatoes, olives, potatoes, lemon confit, and Espelette pepper; or Long Island duck meatballs, served atop whipped potatoes with an apple cider reduction. For dessert, don’t skip an opportunity to lounge outside while dipping the fresh beignets into the caramel-bourbon sauce.
At Fauna, in Westhampton Beach, Adirondack chairs perched on the restaurant’s verdant lawn offer the perfect place for a pre-dinner drink. Order the Hot & Dirty, a signature cocktail made with house-infused vodka, olive juice, Tabasco, smoked paprika oil, and a Danish blue cheese-stuffed olive. The dining options are plentiful, but some unforgettable dishes include the mussels vadouvan, cooked in a ginger-curry-cider broth and served with grilled bread. The almond flounder is an ode to Starr Boggs, who occupied the hallowed space before: it’s a crusted piece of fish served with whipped sweet potatoes, seasonal vegetables, rum-glazed bananas, and a citrus beurre blanc.
Hampton Bays’ Canoe Place Inn, which opened last year, has its own bespoke dining venue known as the Good Grounds Tavern. The hotel has plenty of beautiful outdoor spaces, where guests can enjoy the majesty of the East End. While dining, dig into Executive Chef Ülfet Ralph’s award-winning cuisine, which focuses on local agriculture and seafood. The caviar martini, featuring local Sagaponack potato vodka, pickled potato, and, naturally, caviar, is the perfect start for a spring-festive dinner. Follow it up with a fresh seafood dinner of bouillabaisse, made from local sea bass, clams, mussels, and fennel.
At Dopo Il Ponte, in Bridgehampton, which specializes in pizza from a magnificent brick-oven, diners can sit in an adjacent, perfectly green patio that looks out onto the village’s Main Street. This is where the former World Pie once was, and the outdoor space remains equally charming, with strung lights canopied over the petite, green space. The menu, however, has grown in both scope and ambition. Order the San Daniele pizza, a thin-crusted version served with 36-month-aged San Daniele prosciutto di Parma. Or an expertly cooked friarelli pie, topped with broccoli rabe, sweet sausage, and Parmigiano-Reggiano. No matter how you slice it, dinner outside at Dopo is a lovely, green affair.