You came. You sipped. You stocked up.
Summer days were made for trips to the North Fork wineries, and after sampling, swirling and savoring, taking a bottle to a restaurant near you.
Uncork the Bring Your Own Bottle experience at these seven Long Island restaurants.
Orto blends a quaint setting with modern Italian cuisine as seamlessly as Sparkling Pointe winemaker Gilles Martin blended Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier in the 2014 Blanc de Noirs. Set in a refined cottage, Orto’s wooden furnishings and exposed beams give it a rustic feel, and the squid ink fettuccine made with homemade pasta and an ample serving of shrimp is a fun twist on a classic. The pork Milanese is tender, juicy and pairs well with either bottle of red or white, which the staff will uncork without a fee. Heads up: Orto is cash only.
Orto is located at 90 North Country Rd, Miller Place
Basil Café Restaurant
This unassuming restaurant is known as a hidden gem for its Persian and Mediterranean food. Though a carryout option is available, locals like to sit and stay a while, often with a bottle of wine from their homes which Basil Café will uncork without charge. The Barg, a marinated and pounded beef tenderloin cooked over flame, is an authentic choice. Ditto for the Zereshk polo made with Basmati rice, wild Persian barberry (Zereshk), pistachio and almond and plated with chicken in saffron sauce. It’s all served in an inviting, dimly-lit space with an ambiance as warm as the obliging staff.
Basil Café Restaurant is located at 413 Lake Ave, St. James
Jeans and flip-flops are appropriate attire at this casual space that looks like a hole-in-the-wall but serves up mega-portions of what some diners hail as the best Thai in Suffolk. The Pad Thai comes with loads of beef, fish or poultry. A word of advice for diners who like their Pad Thai spicy: ask the servers to turn up the heat — the amiable staff takes requests all night. Consider bringing a fruity white like Riesling or sauvignon blanc. The sweet wine will balance the spice. There is a small wine list, but guests can also BYOB for a fee.
Raan Thai is located at 203 Terry Rd, Smithtown
This North Shore eatery seats about two dozen people — reservations are a must as the small space is home to big flavor. The lineup of rustic Italian fare changes seasonally, but the meats are known to be tender and the house-made pasta is fresh year-round. The red wine brasato with creamy polenta is a hearty meal that pairs perfectly with a red blend, and the tagliatelle
with truffles, asparagus and Parmesan cheese tastes like summer on a dish. There’s no alcohol on site, but The Trattoria doesn’t charge a corkage fee for guests who BYOB. Know before you go: The Trattoria does not accept credit cards.
The Trattoria is located at 532 North Country Rd, St. James
Creative eats and a cozy atmosphere make this Kings Park restaurant a favorite. The wooden chairs are cushioned, which is a good thing because guests tend to pick their forks up and eat a while. Mushroom aficionados (and up-for-anything foodies) laud the hay and straw, a rich dish made with mushrooms, cream and white truffle oil and fresh semolina and spinach pasta. There’s also ample offering of seafood, including pan-golden sea scallops in ginger-lime beurre blanc served with jasmine rice and vegetables. The portions are generous, and the corkage fee won’t break the bank ($15).
Café Red is located at 107 Main St, Kings Park
There is no corkage fee at this hotspot for Turkish and Mediterranean cuisine, and the dining room has an airy, intimate feel one might get if uncorking a bottle at home. There are white and robin’s egg blue walls adorned with carefully placed photographs and bay windows shaded by white curtains. Diners don’t need a knife when eating the lamb shish kebab. Marinated on a skewer, it’s soft as butter. The portions are large, but saving room for dessert is recommended. The rice pudding is creamy, flavorful and shareable. Consider bringing along a bottle of local dessert wine — Mavi Grill does not charge a corkage fee.
Mavi Grill is located at 749 Mount Sinai-Coram Rd, Mt. Sinai
This Italian spot has a cozy indoor dining room ideal for winter and garden seating perfect for a summer evening and bottle of rosé. It would go well with the burrata, part of Pentimento’s vegetarian small plates menu, or the linguine with seafood. The latter is a fish fanatic’s dream made with PEI mussels, Spanish octopus, clams, squid and wild shrimp. Pentimento waves its corkage fees ($20 for the first bottle, $10 for the second) on Thursdays.
Pentimento is located at 93 Main St, Stony Brook