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These baskets at Wells Homestead in Aquebogue make for great hostess gifts. (Credit: Sascha Rosin)

Even though a bottle of wine is always appreciated, the next time you spend a weekend with friends or are invited to a dinner party on the North Fork, think about bringing a basket or bag of local treats that your host or hostess can keep all to themselves. Below, find a handful delicious options, but be warned: You may find yourself buying extra for your pantry at home.

Wooden basket: Everybody needs at least one of the sturdy gathering baskets that line the rafters at the inviting farm stand called the Wells Homestead, 460 Main Rd., Aquebogue ($6.50).


Local offerings abound at farm stands like that of 1760 Homestead Farm, 5412 Sound Ave., Northville (from $7.50). While you’re there, pick up a bouquet of snapdragons or other flowers, kept ultrafresh in a cooler.

North Fork Sea Salt

Purveyors include Lombardi’s Love Lane Market, 170 Love Ln., Mattituck; Phoebe & Belle, 37070 Main Rd., Cutchogue; and Country View Farm Stand, 57995 Main Rd., Southold (from $12).

Goat and sheep’s-milk cheeses

It’s tough to choose, but you can’t go wrong at Catapano Dairy Farm, 33705 County Rd. 48, Peconic ($12 each; 3 for $30).


Two favorites are those from 8 Hands Farm, 4735 Cox Ln., Cutchogue ($8) and Nina’s Fresh Batch, carried at Sang Lee Farms, 25180 County Rd. 48 ($10.99).

Hot pepper jelly

That from Sang Lee (see above) has just the right amount of clean-tasting heat and is especially delicious paired with goat cheese from nearby Catapano (see above; $8.99).


The hot pepper relish (fabulous on hotdogs and burgers) from Country View Farm Stand (see above) is an instant classic ($7). Apple-raisin chutney, one of a mouthwatering trio made by the Fork & Anchor General Store & Deli, 8955 Main Rd., East Marion, takes a ham or turkey sandwich over the top ($11).

Single-origin organic coffees

Aldo’s Coffee Co., 103–105 Front St., Greenport (from $16). Aldo’s freshly roasted beans have been perfuming this fishing village since 1987. And yep, picking up some biscotti or scones as well is a good call.


Stand-outs include Concord grape jam from 1760 Homestead Farm (see above; $12) and the six different jams from six different berries (including black, golden, and red raspberries) from Oysterponds Farm, 24850 Main Rd., Orient ($10).

This story was originally published in the July 2017 edition of northforker magazine