2393 Montauk Hwy., Bridgehampton, NY 631-537-0590
Once known as an East End favorite of Manhattan's arts scene, Bobby Van's still serves city crowds that flock to the Hamptons come summer -- but it's also a popular stop all year for locals looking for a meal done in contemporary style. Steakhouse cuts of meat are usually among the more popular selections but more sleek dishes, such as tamarind-glazed Chilean sea bass and pappardelle with duck confit, mushroom and fontina cheese, can be had as well. Although it is a casual yet upscale restaurant, the lack of sports bars on the East End often results in fans coming here, grabbing a drink at the bar and watching the game.Hours: Mon-Fri: 11:30 a.m.-10:30 p.m.; Sat: 11:30 a.m.-11 p.m.; Sun: 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Reservations: Recommended Credit cards: Accepted Accessibility: Yes
Willie Morris and James Jones, John Knowles and Truman Capote, Irwin Shaw and Nelson Algren. They all must be wondering what happened. Bobby Van's, the Hamptons' lionized saloon-as-salon, holds on to the name, but little else. The restaurant with this name, however, can be pretty good. They prepare a satisfying crab cake, with a mustardy sauce remoulade, and dependable shrimp, lobster, and crab meat cocktails. But you can skip dishes such as duck strudel and the Thai shrimp taco. The better main courses are steak house staples: porterhouse, sirloin, filet mignon, veal chop, lamb chops. But when things get too complicated, the choices are less appealing. The wasabi doesn't make it in these potatoes, and the fettuccine with seafood isn't a specialty. Respectable sides: baked potato, garlic mashed, creamed spinach. Top dessert: cheesecake. Even with its new identity, you still imagine the old haibitues having a drink and probably a good laugh.