Who has the best drinks in the world? Well, now we do. Dante NYC, an iconic West Village restaurant that opened its doors in 1915 as Caffe Dante, was crowned World’s Best Bar in 2019. Now, it is delivering drinks to South Fork residents Friday through Sunday all summer long.
This isn’t the restaurant’s first go in the Hamptons. In 2017, Dante did a pop-up at Highway Restaurant in East Hampton and always planned to establish an East End presence. “Our guests often go back and forth from the city to the Hamptons during the summer months, and we want to be able to continue to provide our drinks for those guests when they’re out of town. A lot of our drinks tie into the Hamptons culture of outdoor living. We want to connect to people here and be a part of that,” Dante owner Linden Pride said.
As city residents have flocked to the more tranquil surroundings of the East End, Dante is committed to providing regular service to its existing patrons while expanding its reach to the local community.
Australian native Linden Pride took over the original Caffe Dante in 2015 and renamed it Dante NYC. Prior, he worked with restauranteur Neil Perry in developing Rockpool Bar and Grill Sydney, Spice Temple, and The Waiting Room, to name a few. Pride moved to the U.S. in 2011 and began working as director of operations for AvroKO Hospitality Group, managing venues such as Gotham West Market, PUBLIC, Saxon and Parole, and others. In 2015, he founded Figure of 8 Hospitality with partner Nathalie Hudson and took the helm of one of New York City’s most cherished establishments.
Known for its Campari-based Negroni and a classic martini, a mere four years later a panel of 510 experts across 58 countries agreed that Dante crafted a cocktail superior to all others.
While the city location awaits the go-ahead to serve drinks at the bar, there are various delivery options available. The Negroni Sessions kits go for $115 and include four eight-ounce bottles of Dante’s Classic Negroni, Chocolate Negroni, Bianco Negroni, and Mezcalito; Dante’s Martini Hour are $115 and include four eight-ounce bottles of Dante’s Martini, Olivette, Upside Down Dirty Gibson, and Smoke On The Water.
The Summer of Spritz – St Germain Kit is priced at $80 with St Germain, Prosecco, San Pellegrino sparkling water, a Dante bar spoon, baby’s breath, and a selection of Dante coasters, straws, matches, and a Spotify playlist for ambiance; the Summer of Spritz-Aperol is a variation that comes with Aperol, Prosecco, San Pellegrino, bar spoon, olives, orange, and a selection of coasters, matches, and a Spotify playlist.
Make your own margaritas at home with a $90 Margarita Kit that provides tequila, freshly squeezed lime juice, simple syrup, San Pellegrino, bar spoon, black lava salt, selection of coasters, matches, and a Spotify playlist.
All of the above kits serve 12 people.
Or choose individual 375 ml bottles of the Mezcalito, Negroni, Dante Martini, Olivette Martini or Old Fashioned Whiskey, which serve five people. For $93, choose individual 750 ml capacity bottles of these same cocktails, which serve 10 people.
Part of what earned Dante such a high accolade is the overall experience associated with its craftsmanship. Elliot Cuker, owner of Cooper Classic Cars, is a regular at the city eatery— the shop is on Perry Street, within a mile of the West Village restaurant. Aiming to raise the bar on hospitality, the two establishments partnered up. “Since we’re not able to attend to guests in our establishment, we still wanted to create a hospitable experience when taking Dante on the road. It’s the added touch that helps deliver the Dante experience.” All drink orders will be delivered in either a 1976 Porsche 911 or the 1972 Classic Chevy Truck.
The city location remains open, and Pride continues to pay both rent and employee health insurance. And Pride understands the importance of helping those trying to reinvent themselves in order to adjust to pandemic times. “Try anything and everything, and do what you need to survive. While we had fantasized about the idea of offering bottled cocktails for sale, we never imagined that this is the way we would do so. We built our cocktails to-go program because we had to — we have rent to pay, we have employees’ health insurance to cover, etc. Set up an online platform and figure out what works best for you. This is the most disruptive thing to happen in our lifetimes, but I do believe out of that comes enormous opportunity.”
Dante NYC has also started a hospital meals program where it delivered 200 meals to Stony Brook Southampton Hospital. It plans on continuing to contribute to the community with this program every weekend. Pride said, “In coming out east, it was important to us that we incorporate all of our programming (that’s just how we want to run our business) and a big part of that is feeding the front line.”
Order and purchase in advance online (www.dante-nyc.com) straight to your door in a Cooper Classic Car, Friday through Sunday.