While in Montauk, it seemed necessary to consume as much local, fresh seafood as humanly possible. We wanted to make a fun dinner reservation at one of the few, but delicious, restaurants on this part of the island. Most places seemed to be booked up for reasonable dining hours, so we decided to go Manhattan on Montauk and head to dinner at 10:15pm. We decided to try South Edison, a seafood restaurant located two blocks off the ocean in the heart of Montauk.
We arrived early, attempting to snag a table a bit earlier. Unfortunately, the lively restaurant was at capacity. We decided to grab a drink around the corner while waiting for our table to become available.
After a glass of wine at Montauk Beach House, we ventured back to South Edison for what would be an unforgettable meal. The adorable host, Dennis, seated us in one of the small rooms, off to the side at a light wooden table. The nautical, but classy decor creates the perfect atmosphere of fine, beach side dining.
We all decided to start the meal off right with some of their unique and delicious looking drinks. I ordered the Montauk Mojito, as recommended by the host. Rachel took a more adventurous route, ordering a Martini with homemade pickle juice.
The addition of berries to a mojito added an additional sweetness to my favorite summer drink. Sweet chunks of berry would force its way up the straw and into my mouth, mixing with the fresness of the mint and bitter flavor of the rum. The perfect mojito.
But the drink that had all of us talking was Rachel’s Make-Your-Own Pickle Martini.
This unique twist to a cliche drink made me go back for sips of her martini throughout the meal. The flavor was sweeter then a typical martini, with the pickle flavor outshining the bitter vermouth. A must try if you find yourself in Montauk.
We decided to start the meal by sharing the Baby Octopus Tacos and Razor Clams. One of the wonderful things about the menu at South Edison is the use of local, fresh produce. Each dish is labeled with the farm in which the seafood came from. It’s great ocean to table to dining.
I could have eaten all four tacos and still want more. The complexity, yet simplicity of this dish created a wonderful combination of flavors. A corn tortilla served as the vessel for the delicious filling. Starting with the mild cheese and the sweet spice of the tomato and chili salsa, your palate gets excited for what is to finally come. By the time you reach the octopus, the flavors come together to create the ultimate taco. The octopus was delicious, full of flavor from the olive oil, with a slight crunch on the outside. But mostly, it just melted in your mouth. This was delicious. I would come back for this alone.
I love clams, but there was something a bit off about this dish. The grainy taste gave the impression that these clams had not been washed properly, or overly salted. I felt as if it had just been picked from the water and placed on the place and dressed. I love salt, and when i was able to get a piece without the grainy texture, I thought these were divine. But I still couldn’t look past the unintentional crunch I found with every bite.
I then decided to share the main course with Amanda. We went back and forth on selecting our dish for about ten minutes, maybe even longer. Everything looked delicious. Ultimately, we decided on the Sea Bass Sashimi and Tuna.
The preparation of the fish and all of the side components created one of the best sashimi dishes I have tried in a long time. Sea bass is one of my favorite fish, but I have never tried it raw. The simple dressing on the fish, just a bit of sea salt allowed for the fresh, just caught flavor to shine through. The avocado puree was rich and full of flavor. It lacked the overpowering element, allowing for the fish to still shine through. The fresh flavor of the cherry tomatoes burst with flavor and sweetness, giving that essential added element to the dish. This was a winner.
Who knew beans and tuna were a match made in culinary heaven? I would never have thought that the down home, southern BBQ staple could be transformed into an elegant and necessary component to a rare tuna dish. This dish left me to question all my culinary thoughts of meals past. It worked in unexplainable ways.
The fish itself was that ideal, beautiful red color, with the slightest sear on the outside giving the necessary, light brown color to the fish. All of the flavors worked together. The light, but decadent cauliflower puree added the creamy texture, binding all of the flavors together. The saltiness of the olives created the necessary contrast with the rich beans. The bitter greens on top gave the right bite of spice, completing the dish. It hit every part of the palate, leaving me drooling and wanting more.
I was lucky enough to try a bite of my friends’ scallops. These were delicious. The perfect sear on the outside gave the perfect little crunch with the local, fresh scallops. The fried squash blossoms were delicious, with me licking the scraps off the plate.
Although I didn’t get to try, I definitely looked on with envy over the gorgeous lobster on ice.
After all of the food, I felt myself slipping into a coma of seafood delight. However, we were in Montauk for the night and going out was essential. Amanda and I ordered a European favorite, espresso, to make sure the night would be energetic and full of fun.
It was the perfect meal, with the best people, in a wonderful beach town. This restaurant could easily compete with any fine seafood locations in Manhattan, but retains it’s elegance and fresh ingredients. The right off the ocean location and fresh produce is reflected in the ever changing menu. The dishes are determined by the catch of the day, giving the ultimate sea food dining experience. And all without completely breaking the bank.
South Edison -17 South Edison Street – Montauk, NY
Location: Montauk, NY
Perfect For: Quality Seafood, Special Occasions, Authentic Dining, Impressing Foodies
Reservations: Recommended via OpenTable
Favorite Dishes: Razor Clams, Rare Yellowtail Tuna, Sea Bass Sashimi, Make Your Own Martini