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Hamptons Life

Dining Out In East Hampton

Publication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press
By Heather Girgenti   Aug 21, 2011 4:05 PM
Aug 23, 2011 12:07 PM

This week, Arts & Living visited East Hampton to round up some more restaurants and discover which dish is the most popular, which is the chef’s preferred choice and which is a house specialty.

Shiki 329-9821

Most Popular: Tuna Dumpling, entrée, $15.

Chef’s Favorite: Sautéed Oysters, appetizer, $15.

Signature: Shiki Roll; entrée; $20.

At Shiki, the chefs take pride in the quality of the fish, according to manager Shaun Moore. In the short six months that Shiki has been open, the staff has already discovered the dish that people can’t resist, Mr. Moore said.

The six-piece Tuna Dumpling from the sushi bar replaces a traditional dumpling dough with flattened-out tuna sashimi wrapped around tobiko, crab and a spicy mayonnaise. The roll is topped with a mango salsa.

“It’s been a huge hit,” Mr. Moore said. “Because it’s such a great combination of flavors and the salsa on top is phenomenal.”

After deliberating with the sushi chefs, Mr. Moore reported that the Sautéed Oysters appetizer is their favorite. The breaded, pan-fried Bluepoint oysters are sautéed in white wine, butter and a garlic sauce and are served with lemon wedges.

“It’s something about the texture and the local, fresh oysters,” Mr. Moore explained. “The sauce finishing off the dish is amazing and the oysters are nice and crispy.”

It’s only fitting that the restaurant’s signature dish is the Shiki Roll; a crunchy, spicy tuna six-piece roll with tobiko and scallion, topped with thinly sliced tuna and avocado.

“It really accents the quality of the fish we use here,” Mr. Moore said. “The tuna is amazing and the avocado lends itself well to the spice of the roll.”

1770 House 324-1770

Most Popular: Roasted Halibut; entrée; $36.

Chef’s Favorite: Tomato Watermelon Salad; appetizer; $18.

Signature: Confit Suckling Pig; entrée; $34.

Head chef Matt Birnstill said that 1770 House patrons are loving the Roasted Halibut, which is served with risotto containing peas, morels and a garlic/parsley emulsion.

“It’s the dish we sell the most,” Mr. Birnstill said simply. “It’s a nice lean fish with a creamy risotto and a flavorful sauce, it all works really well together.”

As his personal favorite, Mr. Birnstill had a hard time choosing between the Smoked Lamb Belly appetizer and the Tomato Watermelon Salad. But because of his appreciation for fresh, local ingredients he had to go with the salad, he said. Made with heirloom tomatoes, sweet watermelon, a little olive oil and sea salt, basil and saba (a sweet grape reduction balsamic dressing), the chef called the salad bright, sweet, colorful and great for summer.

As the restaurant’s signature dish, Mr. Birnstill chose the Confit Suckling Pig, served with spinach, white beans, preserved lemon, garlic and chilis.

“It’s more unique,” Mr. Birnstill said. “Not many places offer suckling pig because it’s a relatively labor intensive process. The skin is crispy and the meat is so tender.”

Nichol’s 
Good Food and Ale 324-3939

Most Popular: Tuna Steak; entrée; $24.95.

Chef’s Favorite: Lobster and Shrimp Pasta; entrée; $24.95.

Signature: Bouillabaisse; entrée; $24.95.

Owner and chef Ziggy Attias said the seared or blackened Sesame Crusted Tuna Steak is definitely the most popular dish. It is served with mashed potatoes, fresh vegetables, wasabi, ginger and a ponzu sauce—a Japanese soy sauce and citrus juice-based sauce.

“It’s fresh, high-grade tuna,” Mr. Attias said. “And it’s a healthy, low fat option but still a good portion size.”

As the chef’s favorite, Mr. Attias picked the “out of this world” Lobster and Shrimp Pasta. The dish features fresh lobster and shrimp in a light vodka sauce with penne.

“A traditional pasta dish,” Mr. Attias said. “But with lobster and shrimp, you can’t go wrong.”

The Bouillabaisse entrée—featuring cod, shrimp, mussels and scallops in a light fennel, leak and tomato broth served with Tuscan toast—is the house specialty at Nichol’s, he reported.

“It was voted the best bouillabaisse on the East End in an online survey,” Mr. Attias said proudly. “Everyone who has had it, loved it.”

Rowdy Hall
 324-8555

Most Popular: Rowdy Burger; entrée; $14.

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