Pastry chef Pierre Weber opened his Bridgehampton bistro Pierre’s in the summer of 2000 and it’s been a hot spot ever since. We spoke to the restaurateur about his background, what we can expect from Pierre’s this season, his to-go marketplace, and more.
Tell us about your background in the culinary arts.
I’m the son of a Parisian baker and before opening my eateries in the Hamptons I had a wholesale business selling pastries to hotels, restaurants, country clubs and specialty gourmet shops, like Dean & DeLuca. My family also has a rich history in the culinary arts. I’m a fifth generation baker—there have been bakers in my family dating back to the 1820s in Alsace.
What made you opt to open a bistro and why Bridgehampton?
After taking a break from the city I moved to Bridgehampton. I heard about the restaurant and the rest is history! I like Bridgehampton because it’s the most central.
What brought about the St. Barth-inspired decor?
I discovered St. Barth after I opened Pierre’s. So many of my customers were telling me that the décor looked like St. Barth, so I decided to go check it out—I’m now a regular.
How would describe the change in crowd from off season to peak season?
From fun to super fun.
How do you go about planning menu changes?
I try to change items on a monthly basis and I’m greatly influenced by the season and often inspired by other restaurants when I travel.
Can you tell us about some of the changes we can expect for the 2013 season?
I predict that our lobster and mango salad, tuna tartar, tuna steak, seafood pot au feu, seafood ceviche, fresh waffles on weekends and lychee martini will all be favorites. We’ve also got new sandwiches, parfaits, yogurts, smoothies and juices in my to-go market.
Are there any favorite dishes that will always be on the menu?
Tarte flambé, Chilean sea bass, rack of lamb, and café liegois are here to stay.
Do you ever think about expanding elsewhere?
I’m happy with what I have.
Tables at Pierre’s can be pretty hard to come by…any tips?
I’m very fortunate to have many regular customers that support the restaurant year-round. Showing muscles at the door will not help, but good manners will.
What spurred the opening of Pierre’s Gourmet Market?
It was a logic continuation of my concept. I grew up in my parents’ shop in Paris so I have many great memories that I’m trying to share.
You’re known for almost always being in your eatery. Are you also active in the kitchen, or more so as a host?
I still spend a lot of time with my chefs and pastry chefs. I learned the trade with people that were passionate about sharing their knowledge with me. It’s my turn now to help those up-and-coming in the industry love this industry.
What do you think it is about Pierre’s that keeps people coming season after season?
We’re consistent. Good or bad you have to be consistent. I try to welcome my customers like I would welcome them in my house—details, details, details…
Any special events/offering planned for the season that you’re particularly excited about?
Bastille Day will be celebrated on Saturday July 13 all day. You can expect accordion musicians, a champagne tasting, and the staff dressed up like kings, queens, and gendarmes—lots of fun.
I’ve heard you frequently travel to France. Can you tell us about some of your favorite restaurants outside of the Hamptons?
As often as possible I visit my mother in Alsace. I take her to a restaurant called Arnold in Itterviller. We also go to L’Auberge de l’Ill à Illhaeusern. In Paris I like Le Comptoire and Les Papilles.
Can you describe a perfect Hampton day for you?
A picnic on the beach on a Sunday afternoon. Chilled rosé…
Where do you like to eat in the Hamptons when you’re not dining at Pierre’s?
If only I had time to eat out!
Pierre’s, 2468 Main Street, Bridgehampton,