Get Your Start, Finish
And More At Bin 56
By Luann & Margaret Ann/ email@example.com
Intimate, trendy and off
the main stretch of Huntington, Bin 56 is one that fits anywhere
into your foodie schedule.
A tapas restaurant featuring wine, martinis and a full bar,
Bin 56 is where you can start your summer night with a cool
glass of white and an appetizer, or make a stop before your
evening ends to enjoy some French sauturn and dessert. You
can even spend the entire night there; its menu boasts cold
appetizers but also heartier ones you can easily make a meal
As far north as you can go up Stewart Avenue, Bin 56s
small eating area lends to an intimate atmosphere with cozy
seating outside and, inside, a wide communal table for 12
by the large window, six stools at the bar and, deeper into
the restaurant, a handful of smaller tables surrounded by
chairs and couches. Dim lighting and plush couches help create
the sleek, hip, almost Manhattan vibe.
A Huntington destination for almost a year and a half, Bin
56, along with its next-door neighbor Toast and Co., changed
hands about two months ago, passing from Reststar Hospitality
Group to a family with Huntington ties. Little has changed
since the deal was made and that is OK with us.
Bin 56 offers 30 or so wines by the glass, and over 100 by
the bottle. The menu, in addition to cold & crisp
and warm & lush dishes, offers 13 specialty
martinis and cocktails, with a specials board adding even
more to tempt the palate.
Manager John Estevez is personable, inviting and professional,
and certainly knows his craft. A man with Huntington restaurant
ties that go way back, he said his family once owned an Iberian
restaurant on New York Avenue where Besito now stands.
Estevez started us off with a 2008 Sauvignon blanc, Frenzy
from New Zealand. A crisp white with hints of gooseberry,
it was our favorite of the night. He soon after recommended
another Sauvignon blanc, from Italy, a dry 2008 Ferruccio
Sgubin that had a hint of sparkle with citrus and lemon flavors.
Both wines complemented our cold tapas wonderfully.
A ding of a faint bell signals the servers that a dish is
ready. First up was a blend of olives marinated in orange
and thyme ($6), followed by roasted asparagus with thinly
cut Serrano ham and truffle oil aioli ($7). The asparagus
is crisp and cool, complemented nicely by the truffle aioli.
By far our favorite dish of the evening, the poached figs
($6) are brilliant, stuffed with herb goat cheese and topped
with what Bin 56 describes as balsamic syrup. The figs are
plump, refreshing, cool and fruity, and, mixed with the flavors
of the creamy smooth goat cheese and sweet balsamic, is a
Ceviche ($12) is a slightly citrusy version of the dish with
bay scallops, shrimp and mussels flavored with cilantro, lime
juice, pineapple and tomato. Tuna lovers may opt for the tuna
tartare ($12), with olives, tomato, capers lime juice and
olive oil. The meat plate ($11) is an easy dish to share,
with a sharp sopressata, prosciutto and capicola, along with
raw almonds and tapenade.
Before moving on to heartier fare, we changed gears a bit
and went with Estevezs red wine recommendations. We
loved the Montecillo from Spain, a medium red with hints of
cherry, as well as the drier, full-bodied 2007 Lyeth Meritage.
The spice seared lamb chops ($12) are an absolute must, not
only for the tender meat, but the sweet tomato jam served
alongside it. We thought we were going to miss the typical
mint jelly until we tried the jam, and now were not
sure we can go back.
Crispy calamari ($8) is both sweet and spicy, while pan-roasted
jumbo shrimp and chorizo ($12) brings a lot of flavor to the
table, in both the delicious shrimp and cut sausage.
Dessert was a crème caramel flan ($7) and strawberry
shortcake ($7), complemented by a deliciously sweet dessert
wine, a 2006 Chateau les Tuileries Sauternes.
Having trouble deciding? Try it all with the chefs tasting
menu with wine pairing four courses and four wines
will run you about $50 and changes every week or at
the once-a-month Monday wine dinners. Wine flights are available
upon request. For some entertainment with your wine, Bin 56
offers Tarot Tuesdays, and Happy Hour features $5 wine and
$5 tapas Monday through Friday from 5-7 p.m.
56 Stewart Ave.
Cuisine: Tapas, wine, cocktails
Atmosphere: Trendy, intimate
Hours: Monday-Thursday, 5 p.m.-midnight;
Friday-Saturday, 5 p.m.-1 a.m.; Closed Sunday