by Sue Giustino
A bit of Scandinavia right here in Montauk. Charolette and Zach, of the Hideaway have incorporated the western coast cuisine of Sweeden into the seaside charm of Montauk. We were thrilled to give it a try, and are happy to report that the entire evening was tremendous. Along with the authentic menu inspired by the flavors and traditions of their home islands, the charming aesthetics of the room, and the personable professionalism and knowledge of the Swedish team, this new dining venue with its island like feel is something to check out.
As you walk into the light open space a lovely tree adorns the center of the room, making a natural separation between the spacious wooden bar and the beautiful butcher block dining tables. Automatically, you get the feeling that you’ve been transported to an exotic island escape- simple, rustic, classy.
Welcomed by our host Hugo, we were quickly seated at one of the tables which are placed around the perimeter of the intimate room. A deck out back offers another picturesque seating area with picnic tables and low hung lights. As we perused the menu, our waiter Benjamin welcomed us, and offered first-hand insight into the restaurant and food.
Always eager to try something different, we order a few cocktails from their list. The Lemon Spritz– blended with limoncello, prosecco, and club soda was deliciously light and lemony. The Carl fisher Martini with Grey Goose, vermouth wash and fresh blue cheese stuffed olives- shaken, not stirred was equally delicious. For the Mezcal connoisseurs, the Oaxacan Negroni made with Illegal mezcal Reposado, Campari, vermouth, an orange twist, and poured over an XL ice cube was also a hit. In addition to our choices and others on their list, Emil behind the bar is eager to create any cocktail you may be in the mood for. Beer and Cider, on draft or bottled, includes an array of domestic and international choices including some from Denmark, Germany, France and Belgium. The comprehensive list of wines spans groups of Sparkling, Rose, White, Orange, and Reds. Looking for something different? Maybe Akvavit, an ice-cold Swedish Snap, sounds appealing. Similar to vodka, Akvavit is made by distilling grains or fermented potato mash and is either amber in color or clear like vodka. However, there is one notable difference: Aquavit is infused with caraway and dill, or sometimes other aromatic flavorings are employed, usually including caraway or cumin seed, lemon or orange peel, cardamom, aniseed, and fennel also may be used.
Fortunately, Benjamin was able to eloquently clarify items on the menu that were ‘foreign’ to us, which were quite a few. In the end, we all truly enjoyed discovering and sampling the interesting new foods.
To begin, we decided on-Löjrom & Rösti– a crispy potato Rösti which is adorned with dollops of Vendace roe and creamy sour cream, chopped red onion and dill- the combination was as beautiful to look at as it was to eat. The texture variations, along with the flavors made this an especially lovely treat for the taste buds. A customer favorite, also highly recommended by Benjamin, is the Toast Skagen-a traditional Swedish cold-water shrimp salad. Plentiful tender chunks of the cold-water shrimp were mixed with a smooth sour cream and dill dressing topped with a bit of roe, all of which we enjoyed with crunchy slices of toast. It reminded me a bit of a creamy cucumber salad -only with shrimp instead of cucumbers- and even tastier. Moules Marinières is a traditional French dish was full of flavor and nicely served in a cast iron pan resting on a wooden square block. The mussels are steamed in white wine, then the juices from the steamed mussels are blended with an excellent balance of wine and butter, lemon, and shallots. Served with aioli and bread, you can’t help dunking into the flavor rich buttery broth. Our last appetizer was the Mushroom Toast. A generous portion of diced Chanterelles and mixed mushrooms were blended with cream creating a smooth rich sauce for the mushrooms that were then placed atop crispy toast and topped with shaved parmesan and chives.
We each ordered a dish from the Mains, and then Chef Manuela Carbone sent us an extra treat- a perfectly Pan-seared Salmon with crisp skin, perched upon a gentle Beurre Blanc, and garnished with Vendace roe, roasted potatoes, and tender sauteed broccolini. We casually enjoyed the delicate flavorful salmon entre while sipping glasses of wine: a refreshing Lauverjat Rose Sancerre from France, a crisp white Jurtschitsch-Gruner Veltliner ‘terrassen” from Austria, and a French lighter bodied style of red, Monardiere Cotes-du-Rhone ‘Calades’.
Cod being one of my favorite fishes, I really enjoy trying different styles of preparation. The elegantly [unbreaded] Crispy Cod with an adornment of fresh dill, and plated with a creamy egg salad, a side of fresh grated horseradish was by far one of my favorites. Fork tender middle with a gently charred top, it was delicious! Wallenbergare-can be described as a comfort food, which it is, but it’s also a whole lot more. A ground Veal patty atop a lovely buttery sauce, nestled with potato pure, lingonberries, fresh pickle chips, and sweet peas; quite a uniquely delicious meal. Finally, we had a hard time deciding between the –Côte de Boeuf and the Market Fish– each served with a choice of two sides and designed for two people. The Market Fish was two whole local sea bass, served with a Beurre Blanc, roasted potatoes, kohlrabi coleslaw, green veggies, fresh horseradish and brown butter. Very tempting, but since we had other fish, we decided to go with the steak. [However, we did see it served at our neighboring table, and it came out in a large black skillet, looking and smelling amazing.] Côte de Boeuf consists of a grilled to perfection bone in dry aged ribeye with a side of a delicious bearnaise & red wine sauce. For our two sides, we choose the very tasty parmesan and parsley french fries with Bearnaise sauce, and the fresh vegetables; grilled green asparagus, haricot verts, sugar snaps, and lemon. Presentation, aroma, taste and service – top-notch!
Be sure to ask about the homemade desserts, although feeling a bit full, Benjamin brought us a few to taste. Creamy, Lemon Sorbet with a variety of fresh berries, is a deliciously perfect way to end a meal. However, the Vegan Swedish Chocolate Balls (chokladbollar) are a super popular sweet treat made with cocoa, coffee and oats, and topped with fresh grated coconut. Sweet, yet not too sweet-deliciously addicting and just enough to satisfy your post dinner need for chocolate… Or is that just my need?
Chef Manuela Carbone who was born Argentina and studied in Sweden, has created a menu offering a spectacular variety of traditional foods. Dining at Fishers may even make you want to travel to the Western Coast of Sweden to further experience the cuisine and culture.
Fishers is a Scandinavian culinary experience right here is Montauk. Authentic Swedish fare that tastes like you were being treated to grandma’s precious family recipes, with buttery yet light sauces, fresh fish and vegetables, creams and dill; all vital parts of the savory results.
Congratulation to Charolette and Zach on this fresh new dining option, with a knowledgeable friendly staff and delightful meals.
“Being night owls ourselves, we serve our full menu every night until 11pm. Relax, lean in, enjoy.” https://www.fishersmontauk.com/