Quogue, East Quogue, Hampton Bays, Westhampton, etc.
Help help me Chowhounds. The SO's family is from Quogue and we end up spending many weekends there starting at this time of year. I am consistently horrified by most of the places we go out to eat -- pretentious, overpriced, bad food, etc. I'm always amazed that food seems to be characterized by so many of the pseudo-sophisticated touches I associate with strip malls in truly remote areas of the country. After all, much of the clientele, restauranteurs and chefs in the Hamptons should be the exact same people who care so much about food in NYC.
I can accept that overpriced is part of the socio-economic landscape, but I find it hard to believe that the same "Island" that gives us Brooklyn and Queens is entirely devoid of interesting eats.
For example, are there no fresh fish places of the simple kind I enjoyed growing up on the Jersey Shore?
There is a huge Latino immigrant labor population in that area -- are there hole in the wall Mexican or South American places that my BF's family just wouldn't know about?
I absolutely don't care about sighting the Hiltons, or Puff Daddy. I'm just looking for food I don't feel dumb for eating! If you all tell me it's hopeless, we'll stick to barbequing at home!
Hopefully you head to Hampton Bays sometimes, you'll find a lot more of what you're looking for there.
Brewsters just before the canal is a simple fish place, very fresh and made from scratch. A counter and some small tables. Homemade chowder and everything else you expect.
Hole in the wall Mex: Melrose Deli in Hampton Bays (movie theatre shopping center) or farther up in Southampton on Montauk Highway, a big yellow bldg on the left but can't remember the name (NOT the one by the canal, about five minutes past that) There's a really great taqueria in Riverhead if you ever go up there shopping or whatnot.
Why don't you just go to Gators? They have the best food, their steak is as good as anywhere, great fresh fish, and very reasonable. The nicest staff you'll find too.
Then you have The Inn Between, which is Irish American with a chef that used to cook at the type of places you mention: or for Italian, try Villa Paul, you'll see all the the locals there and no celebrities! They also feature local fresh fish.
Have you ever gone to New Moon Cafe right in Quogue, or is that not what you're looking for? I have a feeling your SOs family might not enjoy these places as much as you, however!
I used to live out there so I have a few suggestions.
Uncle Joes pizza in hampton bays is excellent. It is in the shopping center next to the bawdy barn. It is 1/2 pizza place and the other half casual restaurant.
Tony's Asian Fusion in hampton bays is also very good.
While not a restaurant, Cor-J's in hampton bays has the most delicious freshest fish to take home for bbq-ing.
Also good if you want greasy stuff is slo-jacks. it is mainly take-out with a few tables outside. really good fried chicken and burritos.
And I can't forget Belle's at the westhampton airport. great cajun food in a very casual atmosphere.
I second Cor-J's seafood market. Just last weekend my Mom and I were talking about how they had fish "chunks" pre-cut for kebabbing. Tuna, sword, shark, etc. pre-cut in cubes to slip on the kebab skewer. That used to be a pretty economical way to go, fish wise. Great stuff there!
I also second Belle's at the airport. Fantastic. We were last there about 1.5 years ago, but it was as good as I remembered. Great black beans and corn bread, catfish, crawfish, etc. I'm surprised it doesn't get more play on this board. Good hospitality too.
Belle's is a lot of fun at the airport. Also in Hampton Bays there is a place on the water called Oakley's - its pretty good - casual atmosphere and fresh fish. If you like Italian deli's you have to try Scotto's in Hampton Bays on Montauk Highway. Scotto's sells great meat and chicken for BBQ's but they also make fresh delicious pizza (to take out). They have great Italian stuff.
Also Michaelangelo's (two sites near westhampton) is good for decent Italian.
Baby Moon is also a great Italian/pizza place in Quogue on MOntauk highway.
Oakland's on Dune Road has decent food and an eclectic clientele, very comfortable to hang out for hours.
I've heard Baby Moon is great but they're in Westhampton on Montauk Hwy: New Moon Cafe is in Quogue. Also a really good sushi place at the other end of town.
If you want to go as far as Southampton, Tuscan House is as good as Italian gets out this way.
Try the Inn Spot in Hampton Bays. The original restaurant was not so great but the two women running it these days are fantastic. Also, it's worth a trip west to Eastport for Trumpets on the Bay. (I consider Eastport to be Westhampton-adjacent). Also, Anonna's in Westhampton is great, but fairly expensive.
There is a Salvadorian place called Tres Diamantes on Montuak Hwy in Weesthampton that is really yummy and all locals.
Baby Moon is great for pizza, pasta and such.
F.O.O.D. is Hampton Bays is my favorite in the area. Tough to score a table. You must call a week ahead b/c of the tiny space and delicious food.
Indian Cove in Hampton Bays is great place owned by a french guy who used to be the chef at the Caryle or the Pierre...something like that. In any case, he makes a great seafood risotto.
I like Oaklands better than Dockers...both on Dune Road. Oaklands has the BEST crab cake and delicious seafood entrees.
Atlantica at Westhampton Bath and Tennis has a great brunch.
Jon Scotts on Dune Road in WHB is a casual place with a good lobster roll, wings, burgers and live music.
PEARL in Speonk has fab sushi. Beautiful presentation.
Boccacini in the King Kullen shopping center in HBays has really good pizza (better than Baby Moon) and some great pasta too.
Magics Pub in the town of WHB makes the best burger on an english muffin. It's a must have.
And lastly, Starr Boggs in WHB. One of my favorites. Won't break the bank. No entree over $30 on the menu and the food is very good.
We did not have a good meal at Villa Paul or at New Moon Cafe and would not go back to either. Had a horrible experience with the owners of the Inn Spot and would not give them my business either.
I'll second the rec for Brewsters for fried seafood, although they have only clam strips,,,,no bellies. For clams with bellies head to Buoy One in Riverhead.
Definitely hit up COR-J for the freshest seafood to bring home and cook yourself.