Michelin-Starred Chef Shaun Hergatt Arrives at Montauk’s Surf Lodge

Photo courtesy of The Surf Lodge

Chef Shaun Hergatt has arrived at The Surf Lodge—and he’s not here to party. This Michelin-starred and James Beard Award-nominated chef, himself an Australia native, brings a new culinary gravitas to the ever-popular Montauk destination. 

Hergatt was the force behind SHO Shaun Hergatt, the New York City restaurant that opened in 2009, received two Michelin stars, and landed him a Best New Chef award from New York Magazine. Imported out East, Hergatt’s sensibility treads the delicate line between simple, casual cuisine and complex, thoughtful flavor.

On a recent night, I had dinner under twinkling Edison bulbs. I arrived on taco night, so the menu wasn’t the full menu. What regular diners will find, though, is a dedicated raw bar, featuring oysters on the half shell; local fluke crudo with yuzu, jalapeño, and cilantro; a yellowfin tuna poké with a sesame-soy dressing and wasabi roe; and a massive seafood tower boasting the riches of the sea. Appetizers embrace healthfulness. Consider a take on hummus, for instance: sundried tomatoes, grilled pita, seasonal vegetables, and olives. Yes, there is the requisite nod to burrata, but there is also a substantial appetizer of grilled shrimp, served with avocado, cucumber, and pea tendrils. 

Chef Shaun Hergatt • Photo by Daniel Krieger

On the entrée side, there are pan-seared diver scallops with saffron cous-cous and a truffle-mushroom ravioli. Vegetarians can opt, too, for a cauliflower steak, roasted and then smothered with a coconut green curry and served over quinoa. 

An appeal to one’s lesser angels may land one in different territory, and by that I mean ribeye territory. Hergatt’s version is served bone-in, a hulking grilled piece of meat, basted with rosemary and served with pearl onions, romesco sauce, and French fries. Make it a surf-and-turf kind of evening by adding on the Asian-inflected whole lobster, which arrives bathed in red chili, coconut milk, and basil.