Chef Sam McCleland of Bell & Anchor Dishes on Dan’s Taste of Two Forks

Chef Sam McCleland of The Bell & Anchor.
Chef Sam McCleland of The Bell & Anchor.

What is Chef Sam McCleland’s favorite aspect about being a part of the East End culinary culture? “Having so much locally sourced food to choose from,” he says. McCleland heads up the kitchen at Bell & Anchor, a waterfront restaurant in Sag Harbor. McCleland will be on-hand at Dan’s Taste of Two Forks on Saturday, July 18. Here, he offers his thoughts on being a part of the local food scene.

What are you most looking forward to about being part of Dan’s Taste of Summer?
Seeing my fellow Hamptons chefs

One food or dish that everyone should try at least once in life:

What is the best pairing of food and Long Island beer? Local wine?
Local pork belly with beer. Local seafood ceviche with wine.

If you were to eat at your restaurant as a guest, what would you order?
Start with Montauk pearl oysters followed by a Tuna Bowl

Describe the adrenaline of working in a Hamptons kitchen.
It’s a rush

What drew you to work on the East End?
I came here for seasonal work, because I heard it was a beautiful place.

If we looked inside your refrigerator right now, what would we find?
Champagne, organic eggs, kale, broccoli, feta, blood oranges, local horseradish… the list goes on

The perfect drink for a summer night:
Channing Daughters rosato

Food that defines summer on the East End: All local produce, but for me bi-color corn

If you had two forks in your hands right now, what would you like to stick them in?
Local pork belly and tuna

Favorite East End-inspired meal?
Any meal created around pork from Harry Ludlow at Fairview Farms

What is your favorite local ingredient?
Spring: asparagus; summer: corn; fall: Peconic Bay scallops

What is your favorite aspect of being part of the culinary culture on the East End?
Having so much locally sourced food to choose from

When you hear the phrase “local,” what comes to mind?

Where do you find inspiration, inside and outside the kitchen?
Talking for with other chefs

If you were to pack a meal for the beach, what are three things you’d bring?
Rosé, Mecox Dairy cheese, house-made charcuterie

A great meal always begins with…
Family and friends

Dan’s Taste of Summer kicks off with Dan’s GrillHampton presented by Pat LaFrieda Meat Purveyors on Friday, July 17, and continues on Saturday, July 18, with Dan’s Taste of Two Forks presented by Farrell Building Company, both at Sayre Park, 156 Snake Hollow Road, Bridgehampton. Dan’s Harvest East End, the can’t-miss food and wine classic, rounds out the trio of events on August 22 in Cutchogue. For more information on all three events, including tickets and VIP packages, visit

Bell & Anchor, 3253 Noyack Road, Sag Harbor, 631-725-3400,

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