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As the sun set over Sayre Park in Bridgehampton, NY, Dan’s GrillHampton was just getting started. Hosted by celebrity chef Robert Irvine and judged by a slew of foodies, including Dan Rattiner of Dan’s Papers, the producer of the festival, meat purveyor Pat LaFrieda, celebrity chefs Marc Murphy and Alex Guarnaschelli and attorney Bruce Bronster, the event was a who’s who for the culinary industry.

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The competition pitted 8 NYC chefs against 8 Hamptons chefs to see whose location was the best. NYC staples like Market Table, Hill Country and P.J. Clarke’s were all in attendance. The NYC team was able to reign supreme because of Gabe Thompson and the Epicurian Group’s L’Apicio grabbing the coveted winner title. His Lamb Patties with Yogurt Sauce and Grilled Eggplant Capponata won the judges over when it came to the seasonal dishes.

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David Hersh of Rumba Rum Bar won the People’s Choice Award for their Dominican Ribs with Stone Ground Grits, which is actually the dish we voted for. Some other stand out dishes were the L’Aristocrat Burger from Le Rivage, Pepper Crusted Tuna, Grilled Fennel Sauce Au Poirre from T-Bar Steak & Lounge and Grilled St. Louis Ribs with Char Grilled Corn on the Cob Dusted with Cotija Cheese and Chili Powder from Smokin’ Wolf BBQ, and many more.

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Alongside the restaurants, there was every libation you can think of, from Tito’s Vodka cocktails to Hendricks Gin to Blue Moon, everyone tasted and drank to their hearts’ content while the Nancy Atlas Project provided the music for the evening.

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For dessert, Desserts that Matter held down the fort, offering a Peach Bellini Gelato with Canti Prosecco and Decadent Vegan Rum Cake, topped with a scoop of DF Mavens, the finest dairy-free Madagascar Vanilla Ice Cream.

Dan’s Taste of Summer, a weekend combining Dan’s GrillHampton and Taste of Two Forks, benefitted All for the East End an organization that showcases non profits on the east end of Long Island. We look forward to seeing what’s in store for the weekend next year.

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– Stephanie Carino