My husband and I visited Almond for dinner recently. We’ve long been fans of this Hamptons bistro, but it’d been almost a year since we last partook of Chef Jason Weiner’s fare.
Local wine options include Bridgehampton’s own Channing Daughters Winery and Paumanok Vineyards from the North Fork, but it was a weeknight, so we had a use for something harder.
Husband started where he begins most great meals, with a Tanqueray Gin martini, which he pronounced “very nicely, perfectly cool.” He said that it had a nice zing to it and he liked it very much. He thought he’d follow the libation with an appetizer of Smoked Oyster Cauliflower Chowder but then switched to the Baby Artichokes & House Cured Pancetta Salad. He let me try it. The fresh arugula and preserved lemon dressing complimented the richer ingredients nicely.
Did I mention the still-warm, fragrant bread and the SOFT butter that arrived in a rustic basket as strains of Edith Piaf’s “La Vie En Rose” wafted through the air?
I was feeling frisky and to quell that a bit I ordered an Almond Gimlet of Hendrick’s Gin, lime cordial and red wine float. It was nicely balanced with a sophisticated, boozy punch.
I went for Wednesday’s Plat Du Jour, which is Fish ’n’ Chips. Montauk Driftwood Ale-battered local fluke with skins-on fries and an earthy, green chickpea concoction. The fish was tender and mild in its light, crispy batter.
Husband considered ordering the Wild Boar Ragù with hand-cut pappardelle. I pointed out that it’d be nice to devour a wild boar for a change—instead of being trapped by one at a cocktail party. But he settled on the Berkshire Pork Chop Milanese with smoked fingerlings and a baby spinach salad with bacon dressing. One can’t go wrong when one doubles down on high quality pork products. He asked our server Marc for a pairing suggestion and he replied in his lilting South African accent, “Luffly gloss of red and I would say the rioja.”
It’s a real positive that the food at Almond is so good since the entrée portions are so generous. The service is friendly and the candles are as real as the emphasis on buying local ingredients.
The Sticky Toffee Date Cake with crème fraîche beckoned but we ended our meal with this exchange:
Moi: “I can’t dessert.”
Lui: “Nor can I.”
Hamptons favorite Almond has spawned a number of tasty offshoots. The latest to open is Almond Tribeca on Franklin Street in New York.
For more information, visit almondnyc.com .