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Get to know Westhampton

Thanks to the charming vagaries of Hamptons nomenclature, the hamlet of Westhampton is located within the town of Southampton. To many, Westhampton is regarded as the start of the Hamptons — it’s less buzzy and more family-friendly. And because Westhampton is not found in the center of the tony Hamptons, its real estate tends to be somewhat more affordable than the villages and hamlets due east. Cradling the village of Westhampton Beach and the hamlet of Quiogue to its south, Westhampton is large and irregularly shaped, like a couple of almost-square shapes stacked asymmetrically; the hamlet stretches from Sunrise Highway/Route 27 on its northern boundary to the waterfront in the south. In terms of its commercial profile, Westhampton is clustered in the Greater Westhampton Chamber of Commerce along with Westhampton Beach, Quogue, Quiogue, and several other villages.
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History & Culture

Originally called Ketchaponack (“place where large roots grow”), Westhampton and parts of Westhampton Beach were extracted from the Shinnecock Indian Tribe for little more than 70 British pounds and awarded to Southampton Town in 1666 in a deal known as the Quogue Purchase. Three centuries later, Westhampton played an unexpected role in Cold War history, as its woods hid 56 nuclear-tipped missiles in the 1950s — the last line of defense against any potential Soviet attack. The missile base was decommissioned in 1964. Today’s excitement is more traditionally suburban, with tons of opportunities to improve one’s serve. The Eastside Tennis Club on Montauk Highway has a dozen private, lighted courts, while across the village line, the Westhampton Beach Tennis & Sport Club offers 28 more courts. The smaller Aspatuck Tennis Club has nine.

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Dine & Shop

Most dining and commerce can be found along Montauk Highway. Casa Basso counts as destination dining for the whole family, as it features a miniature castle as well as primo straccia tella soup for two, veal piccata limone, and farfalle bellavista. Nearby, Jerri’s Cakery & Confections specializes in a complete cake inside a single-serve, 8-ounce Mason jar. Buoy One, one of the Hamptons’ top seafood names (other locations are in Riverhead and East Hampton), is represented here: The New England-style menu includes oyster or shrimp po’boys, fish ’n’ chips baskets (clams, calamari, bay scallops), coconut voodoo chicken (roasted red pepper sweet chili sauce, mashed potatoes, and broccoli), and almond-crusted flounder. Westhampton’s Farmers Market Farm Stand is especially well-equipped, with locally grown veggies and fruits, quiches, muffins, seafood, and even raw honey from local hives. The best shopping options convenient to Westhampton include Riverhead and Main Street in Westhampton Beach, though the village boasts the unique Certain Books, which specializes in antiquarian tomes, maps, and historical manuscripts.