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Dear Readers:

When we started out planning our July issue, which hit newsstands this week, we didn’t go into it with any sort of at-home theme in mind. It still worked out that way.

For me, that feels appropriate. 

July is a month when I try to spend as much time at home as possible. Typically there’s a gap between Fourth of July and Labor Day, where the family commitments and event obligations of June start to slow down considerably.

This is the month where I’m inclined to spend a day working in the yard and kicking back by the pool, a steak marinating and a pile of corn waiting to be shucked.

Two stories in particular give this month’s issue the feel of an at-home edition.

Consulting editor Jane Lear’s piece on grilling whole fish should inspire confidence in even the most novice grillsmith that cooking an intimidating piece of fish can be done. It’s loaded with tips — types of fish to choose and best practices for prepping -— that are guaranteed to help improve your grill game.

Reporter Cyndi Murray’s feature on making the perfect margarita is also loaded with information you probably wanted to know, but never asked. We challenge you to make your own simple syrup at home and tell us that alone didn’t make your cocktail better.

Other stories that help shape the tone of the issue are a profile on life on Village Lane in Orient and a guide for our New York City readers on city restaurants that serve Long Island wine.

We also ventured off the North Fork this month for a piece on visiting Montauk and sailed the Peconic Bay to reflect on the tradition of Sunfish boating.

For our readers who are leaving home just to visit the North Fork this month, you’ve picked a great time to arrive. There’s an abundance of fresh produce at the farm stands, the grapes are growing on the vines and a number of fun events are planned.

Among my favorite recurring events to check out in July are the Monday night Dances in the Park at Mitchell Park in Greenport, Wednesday Night Cookouts at The Pridwin on Shelter Island and Alive on 25 in Riverhead on July 5, 12 and 26. New this year, but also likely worth attending, will be the Summer Rosé and Bubbly Fest at Palmer Vineyards in Riverhead, where more than two dozen wineries will be pouring.

I’m sure I’ll see some of you at these events this summer, but when I’m not out and about I’ll be pulling up a pool float, a fish cooking away on my grill and that perfect margarita in my glass.

Grant Parpan
Content Director