Taps Does Pub Fare Right in North Sea

Taps in North Sea, Southampton.
Taps in North Sea, Southampton. Photo credit: Brendan J. O'Reilly

The sign outside Taps in North Sea says it all: “Brews, Burgers, Wings.”

Pub fare complements the wide selection of local, domestic and imported draft beers.

The bar and restaurant at 1271 North Sea Road has been known by many names in recent history, including Regulars, OutEast Cafe and Tugboat’s North Sea House. In 2013, it went by the moniker North Sea Tavern, but owner Rich Decker bought out his partner and decided to give the place a facelift—inside and out—and a new name. Taps debuted in April and has already established itself as a new favorite hangout for locals.

Decker, who also owns Studio 89 in Sag Harbor—a fitness studio, not a restaurant—has been part of the Hamptons business community for decades, and his latest venture may very well be his best.

After choosing a beer from the ever changing selection, patrons may struggle to settle on what enticing appetizer to try: chicken quesadillas, nachos, fried mushrooms, chicken tenders, fried calamari, baked clams and—of course—wings. There are five wing flavors to choose from: Buffalo, super hot, honey BBQ, teriyaki and chipotle. Both the teriyaki and chipotle are unconventional, but delicious, sure to please any wing aficionado.

The variety of burgers ranges from the standard beef with lettuce, tomato and pickle, to a turkey burger and a Mexican burger with guacamole, jalapeño, salsa and Jack cheese.

Nightly specials make it affordable to eat out for dinner any day of the week. Monday, a domestic beer and a burger are just $8. Tuesday, pasta entrees are $18. Wednesday is 2-for-1 prime rib night for $29, and Thursday offers 2-for-1 lobsters. Friday is steak night, with two for $25. Saturday brunch and mimosas is $20. Take-out is also available with curbside service.

The recently redone pub area is well-appointed and comfortable. Sit at the bar to watch a game on multiple TV screens, or at the high-top round tables for drink and conversation with friends. There’s even an arcade machine. A late-night menu is available.

The dining room, with cushy banquettes around the walls plus tables that can be moved to accommodate groups large and small, is light-filled and family-friendly.

Taps, which is one of just a few establishments in the Hamptons that has a cabaret license, also has a considerable nightlife and music schedule. Upcoming on the Friday Night Live schedule this month is Oogee Wawa on August 8, Dune Local and People’s Blues of Richmond on August 15, Tauk on August 22 and Soultiztik on August 29. The cover is $10 and the kitchen stays open until 2 a.m. A DJ spins on Thursdays, for no cover, and on Saturdays, for a $5 cover. Most days, Happy Hour is from 4 to 7 p.m. with discounted drinks and free bar snacks, and Reggae Sundays includes live music with Happy Hour from 6 to 9 p.m.

Decker says he wants to take the Taps brand across the Hamptons, opening new restaurants that share the name and feel of the original, with variations to tailor them to each village.

Taps, 1271 North Sea Road, Southampton. Monday through Thursday, 3 p.m. until late, Friday and Saturday noon to 4 a.m. and Sunday noon until late. 631-259-2998. nstaps.com

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