Wine & Dine: Southampton Publick House


It’s no secret that you can get award-winning tasty brews and satisfying pub grub at the Southampton Publick House. But did you know that the village staple microbrewery, now happily ensconced at its new home on busy Jobs Lane, also serves up quite a bit of food-forward and health-conscious fare? Well, they do. And it’s pretty darn delicious!

I popped in for lunch on Friday afternoon and had a supremely enjoyable experience. My server, Sam, was knowledgeable, friendly and attentive in that way I, who waitressed and bartended my way through college and a bit beyond, found especially pleasant.


She recommended the Potato Ale Cheese and Bacon soup on the daily specials menu as her very favorite soup so I tried it. Boy oh boy, I’m glad I did. It was velvety creamy, savory, and with just a pop of crispness from the finely diced potatoes. The taste and texture reminded me somewhat of my aunt Vera’s chicken and dumplings back home in Indiana, in a slightly more elevated way. The homey and hearty soup was so yummy I found myself making “mm mm mmm” noises. Oopsy.

Owner Don Sullivan also stopped by for a  visit, which was nice. He told me that the move from Bowden Square to Jobs Lane has added a terrific new life to the restaurant, with lots of walk-in traffic from tourists and added patronage by his fellow village merchants, which he said he greatly appreciates. Additionally, the space (which formerly housed The Driver’s Seat) really fits with the idea of the Publick House in its improved incarnation. I, for one, prefer the bright airy location (with a great back deck and bar!) to the more darkly solemn and woodsy-type interior of the microbrewery’s former self. I also like that there’s an ATM downstairs if you’re in need of some quick cash.

Don also pointed out some of his lunchtime favorites, which include the Sesame Crusted Ahi Tuna starter, Flat Iron Chimichurri in the “classics” selections, the Grilled Chorizo in the “pub favorite” category, the special Salmon dish, and the Steak and Gorgonzola or Vegetarian Quinoa Cake salad choices. It was on this recommendation that I try one of his “protein and greens” menu choices. So I did.


But first I consulted again with Sam, who after her soup recommendation really could do no wrong. She promised me that I’d be happily surprised if I ordered the Vegetarian Quinoa Cake salad, which she said that one of the chefs had come up with on his own as an addition to the changing palates of today’s diners who are often disappointed with limited vegetarian options.

I was a bit skeptical, I mean, how good could something like that be??? The words “quinoa cake” do not normally inspire excitement. But I figured I’d take one for the team since I was working and reviewing and not out lollygagging about for my own satisfaction and experience. I’m glad I did because it was fanfreakingtastic! Seriously.

In addition to the actual taste of the grill-seared cake, which was reminiscent of a crab cake in taste and texture, I was most pleased to see the whole ingredients in every bite. No mush there, but instead a crispy exterior and an inside packed with flavorful mouthfuls of lightly seasoned quinoa, black beans, corn, zucchini, carrot, onion and celery. It’s clear that this was a quinoa dish made by someone who would actually want to eat it. Well done!  The delicious cake was atop a bed mesclun greens tossed with a house-made white balsamic vinaigrette and accompanied by fresh (and yes, it was actually fresh!) avocado and grape tomatoes and onion slivers. I enjoyed it so much that I’ll order it again when I come back on my own steam.  : )

For those who don’t know it, or need to be reminded, Southampton Publick House is one of the most award-winning breweries in America, ranked in the top 20 for GABF medals won by a brewery in the last 10 years, and awarded Top Brewpub in 2003 by Beer Advocate Magazine and ranked #8 Specialty Brewery in the World by in 2004

Even though the restaurant has moved, it’s still got its old spirit. Decked out for the upcoming holiday, the eatery is celebrating Halloween with its annual costume party on Saturday October, 29, beginning at 10 p.m. The evening will feature DJ Dory Seymour who will be spinning tunes all night, $5 pints of Pumpkin Ale and $5 drink specials. There will be a costume contest for guests to enter with Anthony from WEHM and BEACH Radio as the judge. There will be prizes for first, second and third place and winners will be announced at midnight.  There will be a $10 cover at the door.

The Southampton Public House is open 7 days for lunch and dinner: Monday – Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 12 a.m. and Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. For further information visit or call (631) 283-2800.  







Hamptons Hot Picks: Saturday & Sunday, October 22 & 23

Goodbye sizzling summer. Sniff sniff. Hello awesome autumn.

I guess it’s officially fall. But that doesn’t mean that we have to hunker down and start hibernating. To the contrary, it’s time to get out there and enjoy life. So let’s soak up all the fun we can before (what’s been predicted to be a) brutal winter.


Baron’s Cove is hosting an Octoberfest celebration on Saturday. Photo by Doug Young

Like beer, food and good times? Head over to Baron’s Cove in Sag Harbor, which is hosting an Oktoberfest celebration on Saturday, October 22, from noon to 5 p.m. Expect German-style treats such as pretzels, sauerkraut, bratwurst and Steckerlfisch, and lotsa tap offerings too. Plus live music with Tom and Lisa starting at 2 p.m.



Later on Saturday, check out Halsey House in Southampton by candlelight from 4 to 5 p.m. Tours run approximately every 15 to 20 minutes. Enjoy cider and cookies before or after your tour.



And on Sunday, October 23, head up to the North Fork for a very special Sunday Supper at Sep’s Farm in East Marion from 1 to 3 p.m. The farm-to-table culinary event, which will be held in a restored barn on the farm (COOL!), will serve as a fundraiser for the Cormaria Retreat House in Sag Harbor. The shindig is being put on by chef and TV personality George Hirsch and our ol’ pal Alex Goetzfried—chef, food writer and photographer extraordinaire. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door and that includes everything but the wine and beer. Yeehaw! Get your tickets here.  Or get the 411 by emailing


Southampton Town: 2017 Budget Meet Next Week


The Southampton Town Board will hold its preliminary 2017 Budget Meeting on Tuesday, October 25, at 6 p.m. at the Hampton Bays Community Center–not at its usual place at Southampton Town Hall. The change of venue is meant to open up a dialogue within the community as a whole, and not just to continue on in the same old space, says Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman.

“We know the budget is always of interest to our residents,” says Mr. Schneiderman. “We’re looking forward to going into the community to hear what they have to say.”

The preliminary $94.7 million 2017 Budget, submitted by Supervisor  Schneiderman last month, proposes a nearly 2-percent drop in the property tax rate, the largest reduction in the tax rate in more than a decade. Woohoo!

The budget may be amended through the budget process, but it must be adopted by the Town Board on or before November 20. Can’t make the meeting? Then watch it on SEA TV  or find the full budget document on  the Southampton Town website.


Hamptons Hot Picks: Thursday and Friday, October 20 & 21


Matthew Conlon, Andrew Botsford and Rebecca Edana in a scene from “November.” Tom Kochie photo

David Mamet’s “November” opens tonight–Thursday, October 20–at the Quogue Community Hall. Presented by the Hampton Theatre Company, this super appropriate comedy about inappropriate political machinations will stage through November 6. Read more about it here in the preview I wrote for the Sag Harbor Express.

Also tonight, the Young Cowgirls (of the Neo-Political Cowgirl variety) will stage their final workshop presentation at Guild Hall in East Hampton at 7 p.m.


John Leonard loves his cell phone in “God of Carnage.” Photo by Dane Dupuis

And don’t forget that Yasmina Reza’s “God of Carnage” is staging at the Southampton Cultural Center. Now in its second week, the play continues through October 30. Here’s my review, running in this week’s Sag Harbor Express.



Also tonight, there will be a special God’s Love Charity Ride at the Sag Harbor Gym from 5:30 to 7 p.m.  Call 725-0707 to reserve a bike.



On Friday, October 21, the Bridgehampton Museum is hosting a program celebrating farming in and around Bridgehampton. The event, which starts at 1 p.m., will feature local bee-keeper Mary Woltz and mushroom farmer David Falkowski, who will share their experiences with audience members. For more information call the Museum at 631-537-1088.



The Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill continues its Salon Series on Friday at 6 p.m. with a performance by SYBARITE5, the string quintet that plays repertoire ranging from Mozart to Radiohead.



Lastly, for now, the Southampton Arts Center is getting a scary good headstart on Halloween by opening up its doors for a Spooktacular Haunted House, designed by Oscar Gonzalez, which will be open on weekends from Friday, October 21, through Sunday, October 30. Bonus—there will be movies screenings on Friday nights too. This week, it will be “Beetlejuice” at 8 p.m. Next week, “Poltergeist” and “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” will be the last film screened on Halloween Friday.


Spooktacular Haunted House photo by Tom Kochie.

“We envision the Southampton Arts Center as your one- stop-shop for terror this month!” says Amy Kirwin, the SAC’s Director of Programs.

Haunted House days and times are: Friday, October 21, 5-10 pm Saturday, October 22, 5-10 pm Sunday, October 23, 3-7 pm Thursday, October 27, 5-8 pm Friday, October 28, 5-10 pm Saturday, October 29, 5-10 pm Sunday, October 30, 4-9 pm Monday, October 31, 4-7 pm




High School Kids: Free Music Master Lessons

If you’re a high school musician with dreams of greatness but not a lot of dough,  here’s your chance. East End Arts in Riverhead is now accepting student applications for full scholarships for the 2017 Music Masters Mentorship Program with Bakithi Kumalo, who just happens to be the bassist for Paul Simon. He’s also played with: Gloria Estefan, Herbie Hancock, Chaka Khan, Harry Belafonte and Cyndi Lauper, among others.

The intensive six-week ensemble workshop is for kids ages 14 through 18 and will be held from January 3, 2017 through early February. To apply, serious high school student musicians studying bass, keyboard, drums, guitar, sax or trumpet must submit an online application including a recorded performance sample. The deadline to submit applications  is December 4.

Ensemble workshop rehearsals will be held evenings from 4 to 7 p.m. at the East End Arts School Carriage House in Riverhead on the following dates: Tuesday, January 3; Monday, January 9; Tuesday, January 17; Monday, January 23; Monday, January 30; Monday, February 6. A finale performance will be held in early February at a Riverhead-area location.

East End Entertainment News


Aaron Paul’s Hulu series, “The Path,” has been filming all over the East End as of late. According to published reports, the show, which also stars Michelle Monaghan and Hugh Dancy, was set to shoot in Sag Harbor yesterday. I haven’t seen it myself yet but have read reports that a film crew has been spotted out and about. Series stars were spotted on Front Street, Carpenter Street and inside Claudio’s restaurant in Greenport on Monday. They had previously filmed in Westhampton Beach in August.

The plot of the show, which started streaming in March of this past year, focuses on a man who decides to join an unknown and mysterious cult, the Meyerist Movement, in upstate New York. The season two premiere will stream in early 2017.


In other entertainment-type news, Amagansett resident Scarlett Johansson is also filming a movie out east. It’s called “Rock That Body” and it’s also starting Kate McKinnon, Demi Moore, Ty Burrell and Zoe Kravitz.


Definitely not a drama, it’s about a male stripper ends up dead at a beach house during a bachelorette party weekend. The comedy is shooting in Southampton, made to look like Miami.

Turnabout is fair play. If I’ve got a bikini photo of Scarlett Johansson, then I should also run one of Ty Burrell. Right?  : )


And renowned Swedish artist Jacob Felländer, co-owner of c/o The Maidstone in East Hampton, isn’t an actor but his work–three large-scale, kaleidoscopic photographs–is being featured in a film staring Nicolas Cage, Gina Gershon and Faye Dunaway. The pictures hang in the home shared by Cage and Gershon, who play a husband and wife in the movie. It’s called “Inconceivable”( which always makes me think of Wallace Shawn in that scene from “The Princess Bride but I digress) and it’s set for release in 2017.







Wine & Dine: Nick & Toni’s


Brunch has never been better at Nick & Toni’s in East Hampton. Dawn Watson photos.

Whenever you go to Nick & Toni’s in East Hampton, you know it’s going to be a treat. This past Sunday’s brunch was no exception–though the food and service were, as always, exceptional.

After having learned that brunch had returned at the notable restaurant, I reached out to my friend Lisa Tamburini, with whom I’ve shared many a fine meal at place that is catnip to the most famous of Hamptons celebrities. Given the option of seating, we choose our favorite cozy spot next to the windows by the pizza oven. It’s great for the sunlight, though the shadows didn’t do my shoot-from-the-hip food photography any favors. Apologies for my selfishness.  : )

Before our starter came–the Romaine Salad with Caesar Dressing, Garlic Croutons, Grana Padano (with optional chicken), which was delicious–we were treated to raspberry mini muffins that were absolutely incredible. They were baked by Rachel Cronemeyer, who is the pastry chef at all Honest Man Restaurants, including Nick & Toni’s, Rowdy Hall, La Fondita and Townline BBQ. I just love getting those little extras, especially when they are so fantabulous! Yum, yum, yum!


Dawn Watson photo

Later chef de cuisine Bryan Futerman came out to join us and talk food. In addition to adding to making us feel like bigshots by stopping by, he let us in on the secret that the legendary Nick & Toni’s chicken (one of the eatery’s most popular items on the menu no matter the time of day) comes from a place called Super Bird. Fitting.


Dawn Watson photo

Next were the entrees; the special Heirloom Tomato and Burrata Mozzarella Pizza for me and the Eggs Benedict with House-cured Pancetta, Poached Organic Eggs, Fine Herbs Hollandaise for Lisa. Wowsa. Bonus: there was more than enough to take home.


Dawn Watson photo

We finished up with cappuccinos and a shared dessert unlike any other I’ve ever had. It was some type of ice cream apple cake concoction and man oh many was it incredible! Get it. You’ll be very happy that you did.

Sunday Brunch is back at Nick & Toni’s, every Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.  Brunch features an a la carte menu with specialty brunch cocktails. Can’t make brunch, then head out for dinner. Bonus–there’s a new fall menu, and the wood-burning oven pizzas are back. The pizzas are available Sunday – Thursday all night. And, the Choice Prix Fixe has returned as well. The special prix fixe dinner menu comes with three different price points for diners to choose from and is available Sunday through Friday starting at 6 p.m. The restaurant is closed on Tuesdays.


This little table setup at Nick & Toni’s says it all: rustic luxury at its finest. Dawn Watson photos.