It’s been almost a year since we launched our weekly column “What’s For Lunch,” where we profile all the delicious mid-day meals available on the North Fork.
In that time, we’ve eaten at dozens of eateries and have learned that going out for a NoFo meal, even lunch, usually doesn’t come cheap. But there are a few places that offer delicious options at bargain prices.
Here are our favorite lunch options (excluding delis, Chinese food and pizza) that cost under $10.
5. Greek Bites Grill, Mattituck
We recommend the spinach pie from this recently opened Mattituck eatery. Made with phyllo dough, spinach, feta, scallions, onions and egg, the pie is made in-house and comes with a soup or salad and pita bread. The soups are a solid option, but we wouldn’t suggest passing up on a Greek salad.
The hearty pie was mighty good comfort food during one particularly cold and icy North Fork week. And the red wine vinegar house dressing, though simple, is my idea of a perfect salad topping.
Lunch specials like spinach pie are offered Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and range from $8.50 to $9.95.
4. Funchos Fajita Grill, Riverhead
If you are having a less-than-stellar day, pick up a mood-lifting meal from this Riverhead Tex-Mex establishment to instantly feel better.
We recommend the cheese-covered chicken enchiladas.
Three enchiladas are filled with chicken, sour cream and cheese, covered with sauce and melted cheese and topped with sour cream, guacamole and salsa ($8.25).
One bite of this feel-good dish and you will forget your troubles. It’s like the melted cheese goes directly to your brain’s pleasure centers.
3. Haiku Sushi, Riverhead
We recommend the sushi lunch special at Haiku Sushi on East Main Street. Two ($8.50) or three ($12) hand rolls of your choosing are served with either miso soup or a salad.
We chose a tuna avocado roll, spicy crunchy yellowfin roll and sweet potato roll on a recent visit.
2. The Market, Greenport
The Market offers several things that are surprisingly hard to find on the North Fork. The first is an organic juice bar, which gets a big thumbs up from this green juice junkie.
The second is a play area for the tots. When I was growing up in the ’80s and ’90s, fast food restaurants were a draw because they offered an inexpensive way to fill your kid’s belly and then let them burn off all the high fructose corn syrup in the ball pit.
But the third and perhaps most important commodity The Market offers is a menu full of healthy, organic and vegetarian options.
We recommend the eatery’s California Sandwich. Melted muenster cheese, avocado, tomato, sprouts and canola mayo served on your choice of bread with a side of tortilla chips ($7.95).
1. Farm Country Kitchen, Riverhead
We suggest the Maria panini. Although the menu changes daily at the West Main Street hideaway, this melt makes a frequent appearance among the day’s offerings.
Grilled chicken, fried artichoke hearts, vine ripe tomatoes, melted mozzarella and fresh basil pesto are served on ciabatta bread with a side salad ($9.50). Served with a chocolate chip cookie on weekdays.