Edgartown restaurant l’étoile celebrates 25 years

Carpaccio of day-boat sea scallops with spring onion, lemon pearls, pink grapefruit, and radish. — Photo by Ralph Stewart

“I’ll never serve something that a guest might think ‘I could have made that at home,'” Michael Brisson says, chef and owner of l’étoile in Edgartown. The restaurant is open for the season just in time for Islanders to get their fine-dining fix before the crowds arrive.

l’étoile is located in an old whaling captain’s house on North Water Street in Edgartown. This spring they celebrate their 25th year in business. Some may remember the restaurant when it was located in the Charlotte Inn.

Start your evening off in the chic deep-blue-hued bar with one of l’étoile’s specialty cocktails like the Startini: citrus vodka, Cointreau (orange flavored liqueur), pomegranate puree, fresh lime-juice, finished with champagne; or the Peach Sidecar: VSOP cognac, Cointreau, lemon-juice, and fresh peach. If you are more of a savory cocktail kind of person, the Bleu Martini might be for you with Bombay gin, dry vermouth, and bleu-cheese-stuffed olives.

Chef and owner Michael Brisson recently returned from a honeymoon in France with “revived vitality” he says. And it shows in his spring menu. Check out the spring asparagus and watercress soup, topped with shaved Parmesan curls. Katama oysters are served on the half shell with champagne cream and blood orange mignonette. The signature lobster macaroni and cheese with black truffle and bacon is back, accompanied by (for the illusion of health and a little greenery) a baby arugula and cress salad.

For main course fare try the pan-roasted, citrus-rubbed game hen, on cranberry Israeli couscous and fava bean mélange with a lemon-cilantro sauce. The Surf and Turf of the moment is half a lobster étuvée and half grilled rib eye served with fresh gnocchi, shiitake, and spring vegetable sauté in a lobster-Cabernet sauce.

“The spring menu will evolve as ingredients become available,” Chef Brisson says. “We’ll have Morning Glory asparagus before you know it.”

Chef Brisson understands that dining out is special regardless of the occasion and strives to create something worthy of that with every dish. Look for nightly specials as well. Last week the kitchen served a grilled halibut filet and spring pea and mint risotto with a champagne-chervil sauce.

l’étoile is open for dinner Thursday through Sunday starting at 5:30. For more information, visit letoile.net. For reservations, call 508-627-5187.