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Story - Food

Apr 21, 2018 4:40 AMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

Il Mulino Comes To Wainscott

Apr 23, 2018 11:08 AM

This May, the Hamptons will add another Italian restaurant to its seasonal dining lineup: Il Mulino, the Italian brand with outposts in Las Vegas, Roslyn, Manhattan, Atlantic City, San Juan, Puerto Rico and South Beach, will open in Wainscott’s former Osteria Salina space.

The restaurant space, which abuts East Hampton’s Georgica Pond, has been operated for the past three seasons by Timothy and Cinzia Gaglio. The couple has since left the East End to focus on their restaurant in Delray Beach, Florida. Il Mulino, like its predecessor, will be a seasonal restaurant with dining service provided from May through September.

Prior to Osteria Salina, the Wainscott space was home to the Georgica Restaurant and Lounge, a nightclub operated by Antonio Fuccio. The club, known for its raucous crowds and “Industry Mondays,” closed at the end of the 2014 season. Osteria Salina took over the following spring, relocating from its original Bridgehampton location, where it had been for three years. While relatively popular, Osteria Salina struggled with the short Hamptons season. Its owners operate a restaurant by the same name with year-round service in Delray Beach, which will allow them to continue the namesake with a degree of financial stability. The Montauk Highway space has been no stranger to changing ownership; it has also been home to restaurants Sapore di Mare, Saracen and Charlotte’s Hidden Pond.

The Wainscott restaurant is currently undergoing renovations and is slated to open in May, in advance of the 2018 summer season. The restaurant will be equipped with a wood-fired oven and will feature popular menu items from some of Il Mulino’s other restaurants, including chicken parmigiana, branzino, risotto and wood-fired pizza. The menu will also take advantage of Long Island’s local seafood and produce, using Long Island-caught and -grown food whenever possible. Take-out meals will be available, although a delivery option is not currently planned.

The Il Mulino of the Hamptons will be a streamlined version of the larger, grander restaurants in metropolitan areas and resort towns. The menu will be smaller, highlighting the “greatest hits” served both in Roslyn and in Manhattan, though the restaurant will continue to accommodate special requests. As at its other outposts, the restaurant will provide dairy- and gluten-free options for customers with dietary restrictions. The restaurant will accept—and will likely, as the season progresses, require—reservations. The Manhattan restaurant has long since been known as a place to be seen, so East End residents and visitors can add Wainscott’s Il Mulino to the increasingly long list of hot summer haunts.

The original incarnation of Il Mulino opened in New York’s Greenwich Village in 1981, was reviewed by New York Times food critic Mimi Sheraton shortly thereafter (“Some dishes were about as good as they could be”), and was re-visited twice, most recently by then-critic Frank Bruni in 2006 (“… for trend-resistant cooks and tuxedoed waiters eager to pummel you into gastronomic submission, you go to Il Mulino. And you go on a diet the very next day.”) For decades, the Manhattan version of the restaurant occupied Zagat’s top Italian spot. Il Mulino’s prices—in the city and elsewhere—have always been sky-high, so Hamptons diners are likely to see equally expensive dishes in Wainscott this summer. But deliciousness knows no financial bounds, after all, and Il Mulino is slated to join the ranks of other tasty restaurants that do not suffer from a lack of patronage. This is a restaurant for those wistful for the Italian restaurants of Old New York. Hungry gastronomes, then, will be happy to welcome this classic to the East End dining scene.

Il Mulino is located at 108 Wainscott Stone Road in Wainscott, 631-658-9122, ilmulino.com.

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