Love is in the Air for Valentine's Dining at These North Fork Restaurants
Every night is special when you’re out dining with your one and only. But on Valentine’s Day it’s a little extra special, a cause for celebration.
Here’s a roundup of the North Fork restaurants to consider for a memorable evening on February 14, with several featuring select menus for the occasion. Keep in mind, a few establishments that should be on the list – such as Jedediah Hawkins and Il Giardino – are taking a short hiatus during the off-season to rest their weary selves and will reopen in the near future.
Farm Country Kitchen: Once considered a secret hideaway, Farm Country Kitchen is a 19th-century colonial farmhouse nestled on the Peconic riverfront. It’s still inconspicuous, with most visitors passing it at least once even with their GPS confidently announcing their arrival. But that’s part of the appeal, a treasure hunt of sorts. A true farm-to-table experience before most others caught on, the chef sources ingredients locally when he can. The rustic charm of the interior is the perfect setting for a romantic evening. Along with the usual spread, you can opt for a fixed $45 price tag that yields an appetizer, main course and dessert. 513 West Main Street, Riverhead. 631-369-6311, farmcountrykitchenli.com
Frisky Oyster: Moonstruck couples may want to head to the Frisky Oyster for the Peconic Gold Oyster Friskafellas. A cool vibe and chic space also await, creating the mood you might be seeking. They’re going with their usual spectacular menu, so you can enjoy standards like chopped winter salad, crescent farm duck breast with a bing cherry-port reduction, seared scallops, lobster gigli pasta, and, of course, oysters. 27 Front Street, Greenport. 631-477-4265, thefriskyoyster.com
aMano: If you can’t take your date overseas, aMano will fill the bill for the evening. The room is clad in a palette of earth tones and wide chestnut-brown planks under foot, offering romance seekers the allure of an Italian countryside. They are featuring a special three-course, prix-fixe menu on Valentine’s Day — the $65 special includes a glass of Prosecco, appetizer, entrée and dessert. You can still order prized stapes like their woodfired pizza, chicken scarpa and the signature Sunday Sauce. 13550 Main Road, Mattituck. 631-298-480, amanorestaurant.net
Tweed’s Restaurant & Buffalo Bar: Walking into Tweed’s is like stepping into a bygone era. The energy of the dimly lit room is always abuzz with conversation and laughter. Ornamental ceilings stand guard over walls embellished with artwork, leather-studded seating, brass décor and a polished wood bar. A buffalo head is mounted above, watching over patrons as they eat bison. Their prix-fixe menu invites you to wrestle a bison tomahawk — as a couple. While bison is the cornerstone here with bison meatballs, kebobs and burgers taking center stage, their baked salmon, roasted lamb and pasta is all quite good. 17 East Main Street, Riverhead. 631-237-8120, tweedsrestaurantriverhead.com
Touch of Venice: Though there’s no unique menu planned for Valentine’s Day at Touch of Venice, the regular menu is not so regular. It’s a thoughtful compilation that pays homage to deep Italian roots with dishes like stuffed artichokes, veal ricotta meatballs, linguini con vongole (yes, that’s linguini and clam sauce) and lasagna. You can complement the meal with an excellent vintage of North Fork and Italian wines worthy of Wine Spectator’s award of excellence year after year. 28350 Main Road, Cutchogue. 631-298-5851, touchofvenice.com
The Halyard at Sound View: You may want to shine your shoes for this one. There aren’t too many ultra-fine dining experiences on the North Fork – and The Halyard comes to the rescue for celebratory occasions. Here amidst an alluring piano lounge, smart whitewashed dining room and exquisite bar captained by a master mixologist, you’ll find food fit for a king and queen. The evening’s cuisine includes a tuna tartare, chicken roulade with mushroom risotto for two and a raspberry souffle — available a la carte or with a three-course prix fixe for $85. This menu is available February 14–18. 58775 County Road 48, Greenport. 631-477-0666, thehalyardgreenport.com
Cooperage Inn: The Cooperage Inn is like a home away from home with traditional furnishings, floral valances and their famous flaky pot pies. Here in this unpretentious eatery you can sink your teeth into down-home favorites like braised short-ribs stroganoff, barbecue chicken and ribs, or meatloaf with hunter gravy. They will feature their usual sumptuous nightly specials on Valentine’s Day. 2218 Sound Avenue, Baiting Hollow. 631-727-8994, cooperageinn.com
Basso: Not quite pining for a full-blown meal? Have a seat at Basso and share a cheese board, antipasto platter, crostini or other gourmet “noshie.” The space is cozy to say the least, with only one table and several bar stools, so you’ll be forced to sit up close and personal with your soulmate, but the vibe is chill, and the music very cool. You’ll find Nick DeCillis, captain of his small ship, standing at a portable grill outside searing seasoned chicken wings or mingling with the guests, ensuring their happiness. 10200 Main Road, Mattituck. 631-333-2740