Re-imaging a Cape Cod Classic

Cape Cod Life  /  July 2022 /

Writer: Susanna Graham-Pye

Owner and Executive Chef Anthony Silvestri brings a fusion of classic Cape Cod and modern, cosmopolitan sensibilities to an iconic Chatham restaurant.  Photography provided by Emily Renaud Photography On this lovely, warm summer afternoon, the doors of PATE’S haven’t opened yet for the evening. But inside it’s already busy. Like the bustling backstage before a show, everyone’s setting the stage for the night ahead. Young workers, having just arrived on the Cape, introduce themselves to one another, and more seasoned servers are showing them the ropes. Candles flicker, silverware glistens, lovely aromas from the kitchen—ginger, sesame, and others—float on the air. After a $1.2 million renovation of the building, PATE’S interior is not the familiar one of days gone by, nor is the menu what it once was. While things are different, Chef Anthony Silvestri, the iconic Chatham restaurant’s newest owner, believes what he’s created here reflects the evolution of dining on Cape Cod.  “I think Cape Cod’s diners are becoming more and more sophisticated,” Silvestri notes. “People are visiting from all over, and more and more people from Boston and New York City live here year-round. Things are very, very different than they were when I first started on the Cape. People are used to a different dining experience, and I think restaurants on the Cape recognize that, and are rising beautifully to that challenge.” The restaurant first opened its doors as “Pate’s” in 1957, when Cloyde Pate purchased what had been a hamburger and ice cream stand on Route 28. Pate had grown up on Cape Cod, and wound-up living between the Cape and what many here know as “Cape Cod South,” Naples, Florida, with restaurants in both locations. The restaurant in Chatham was then owned by Bob Gardner. Gardner first went to work for Pate in the 1970s,…

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Susanna Graham-Pye