When Yuki Mori opened Stirling Sake at the corner of Center and Main streets in 2015, Japanese rice wine was in the spotlight. Since then, Mori has dialed up the culinary offerings at the Greenport restaurant, filling a gap in Japanese cuisine. “I love its location,” Mori said recently. “Inside, we have a cozy atmosphere and outside patio where you can feel the fresh sea breeze air.”
A certified sake sommelier who once managed the NYC sake destination Decibel, Mori said he enjoys the quiet on the North Fork and ability to source from farm — or bay — to table.
“There are many local ingredients available within 20 minutes,” he said. “We go to farms and fish markets to get seasonal vegetables or fish that we then prepare and serve to customers right away.”
We recently caught up with Mori to see what the best-selling dishes have been at the restaurant as of late.
“Fried chicken is common, but we use a Japanese recipe with rice flour that makes it more crunchy,” Mori said. Their dish is marinated with garlic, ginger and soy sauce and the end result is flavorful, crisp and juicy.
This small plate comes in two options: pork belly with sansho pepper sauce or smoked duck breast with spicy miso sauce. “We smoke Crescent duck breast marinated with salt koji that gives it more umami flavor,” Mori said.
Five types of seaweed unite in this health-packed salad served with local greens and homemade sesame dressing. “It’s not a regular seaweed with long green strings, but a Tosaka seaweed,” Mori explained, which is crunchier.
Don’t sleep on Mori’s homemade kimchi, using a family recipe from Cheju Island.
“It’s Sapporo beer’s best friend,” Mori said.
By far a fan favorite item, noodles are served in broth made from 8 Hands Farm pork bones and seasonal, local vegetables. It’s served with braised pork belly, kikurage mushrooms, red ginger, boiled egg and scallion. “It’s not common to use a noodle from Hokkaido,” Mori said. “But it balances out the taste.”
Stirling Sake is located at 477 Main Street in Greenport.