Matthew Birnstill, a chef whose credentials include 1770 House in East Hampton and the former Red Dish in Commack, just took over the kitchen at Public House 49 in Patchogue. The gastropub has seen its share of kitchen changes since it first opened in 2009. In fact, Birnstill is the first full-time executive chef the restaurant has had in almost two years.
At the moment, Birnstill said, the menu is a work in progress. The current price point will remain the same, with nothing — except for a skirt steak — costing more than $20. Birnstill said his repertoire will be a combination of “homestyle entrees, some necessary bar food” and a bit of creativity.
The space itself is also a work in progress, with a new facade, floor and bar. Next on the agenda: a madeover dining room. “We really want to warm up the dining room and change the acoustics,” said manager Kimberly Johnson, adding that both she and Birnstill are striving to have the place viewed more as a restaurant than as a bar. One suggestion: Change the photo on the homepage.
Public House 49 is at 49 E. Main St., Patchogue, 631-569-2767.