The newly renovated Ram's Head Inn adds live-in music lounge harbor hall to an already burgeoning Shelter Island scene.
For summer, Ram’s Head Inn bar master Harry Brigham curates locally sourced libations—this Summer Thyme cocktail is made with vodka, fresh local raspberries, simple syrup, peach bitters, and a sprig of thyme.
Following the stylish restoration of the Chequit last year, another historic Shelter Island property received a luxe makeover in time for summer. The iconic Ram’s Head Inn, situated on tony Ram Island, is debuting its newly renovated cocktail and music lounge, Harbor Hall, named for its stunning views of Coecles Harbor.
In recent years, the lounge’s live music nights have become a favorite for classic rock and jazz aficionados, so owners Linda and James Eklund sought to create a more ambient space for dancing and music with additions like a new sound system, updated décor, lighting, and dining and tall top tables handcrafted by James Eklund himself.
“We started with a Sunday summer jazz series over 20 years ago, but in the last three or four years it really took off,” says Linda Eklund, who has run the inn with her husband since 1979. “We suddenly realized this room was being used for music, and people were really enjoying it, so we said let’s redo the room to make it more appropriate for the music that now seems to be a big item for us.”
Local tuna poke appetizer.
In addition to live performances by indie artists like Points East (July 8 and August 5, 13, and 26) and Jon Divello and Chris Tedesco on Tuesdays throughout the summer, the inn will also feature Tuesday night North Fork vineyard tastings. Also new is an expanded mixology program led by bar master and Ram’s Head veteran Harry Brigham, who will be curating locally sourced cocktails and creating his own libations, which tap into what it means to celebrate summer in the Hamptons—think blueberry mojitos with fresh mint and berries plucked from Ram’s Head’s garden, or the Summer Thyme, featuring vodka, local raspberries, fresh lime juice, simple syrup, peach bitters, and a sprig of thyme.
“Harry worked for us years ago, but when we started talking about the changes we were making, he shared our excitement, and it looked like a good time to bring him back on,” says Linda Eklund. “For nearly two years, he’s been creating a menu of classic cocktails made from scratch. It’s time consuming but worth it in the long run. He’s bringing a solid, detail-oriented cocktail bar to Shelter Island.” 108 Ram Island Dr., Shelter Island Heights, 749-0811
Photography by: PHOTOGRAPHY BY ERIC STRIFFLER