Chef and co-owner Matthew Guiffrida’s Muse at The End, which is open year-round, has quickly become a popular locals’ hangout. Its relaxed, beachy scene with seasonal outdoor seating is very Montauk. The place was hoppin’ on a recent Thursday night.
The menu is the same as the one at sister restaurant Muse in the Harbor (in Sag Harbor), so I know it well. Both Muses offer a $30 “Economy Gastronomy” prix fixe.
My dining companion Chef Bunnii Buglione and I wanted to try some of our favorite dishes in the atmosphere at The End. I started with a Muse Rum Punch of Montauk Rumrunners Coconut Rum, Sag Harbor Rum, pineapple juice, orange juice, maraschino cherries, and orange, lemon and lime slices. Just as our effervescent server Bianca promised, this drink took me right back to summer.
Bunnii got appetized with the Bacon-n-Eggs Breakfast Salad. I was “forced” to eat its French toast croutons, as Bunnii is a gluten-free consumer. She quite liked the salad’s chunk of grilled pork belly, poached egg, frissée and maple cider vinaigrette. She said, “I wish all salads could be like this!”
I also “had to” eat my dinner roll with most of the complimentary dried tomato spread. It is so salty-good. Bunnii sampled the spread and agrees.
My cauliflower tempura was all that it should be—light, piping hot and savory. I enjoyed another app as my entrée—the creamy Shrimp-n-Grits with blistered sweet peppers. This is not a dish that I care to share.
The stunner of the evening was Muse’s beautifully fried oysters on delish griddled johnny cakes with caper aioli, Gorgonzola and microgreens. These little babies debuted as a special for Valentine’s Day and Chef Guiffrida has decided to add them to the spring menu.
Bunnii enjoyed a tonic water with lime and was tempted by the Horseradish & Gorgonzola Crusted New York Strip Steak but had given up red meat for Lent. She asked if the kitchen could substitute chicken for the beef in the dish. No problem. Bunnii declared it “Great” and “so juicy!” She happily indulged in the loaded baked potato hash on its side.
We continued to dessert—Key Lime Cream Cheese Tart with layers of white cake and vanilla cream sauce for me. A Berry Trifle of vanilla rice pudding under macerated strawberries and blueberries for Bunnii. We were much pleased. Bunnii agreed with my analysis of a Muse Berry Trifle that I recently enjoyed in Sag Harbor—the fruit is better macerated than it would have been in the dish if fresh. Everything in its time. It’s always a “good time” to go to Montauk!
Muse at The End, 41 South Euclid Avenue, Montauk, 631-238-5937, museattheend.com
Muse in the Harbor, 16 Main Street, Sag Harbor, 631-899-4810, museintheharbor.com