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Everything You Have to Eat on Long Island

by Ohio Digital News

Whether you’re looking to keep things casual at a laid back seafood shack, get fancy with an al fresco feast at a Gold Coast mansion, or enjoy dinner with a view by the water, Long Island’s culinary scene delivers for all occasions and tastes. Experience farm-to-table fare, celebrity chef creations, and the best of land and sea at these Long Island spots that celebrate and elevate the region’s heritage and bounty. Photo Credit: @foodballin on Instagram.

Hometown Classics

Grandma Pie

A square pizza with red sauce, mozzarella, and seasoning

Credit: @jackivore on Instagram

Tracing its history to home kitchens on Long Island, this simple and delicious Sicilian-style pizza is baked in a square pan with a thin crust topped with a simple tomato sauce and fresh mozzarella. Try it at Bellagio Pizza in Farmingdale, LaPiazza in Merrick, and the rumored birthplace of the grandma pie Umberto’s in New Hyde Park, featured on the Food Network’s “The Best Thing I Ever Ate.”

Fresh-Shucked Oysters 

Raw oysters on ice with lemon wedges and tiny jars of Tabasco sauce

Credit: @yorkcny on Instagram

With over a dozen oyster farms, an annual Oyster Fest, and raw bars aplenty, Long Island is the place for an all-you-can slurp adventure! Eat fresh at an oyster farm such as Blue Island Oysters by Fire Island or Little Creek Oyster Farm & Market in Greenport, or head to a waterfront raw bar restaurant like SALT in Merrick, Duryea’s in Montauk, and Claudio’s Waterfront or the more laid back Crabby Jerry’s in Greenport.

Long Island Clam Chowder

If you take New England’s classic white clam chowder and blend it with Manhattan’s red variety you get a delightful pink bowl of chowder boasting a rich creamy tomato combination that’s uniquely Long Island. Get in on this rising trend at Chowder Bar in Bay Shore (voted Long Island’s best clam chowder in 2024), White Cap Fish Market & Seafood Restaurant in Islip, and Poppei’s Clam Bar.


If there’s one thing Long Islanders can agree on, it’s that they love a good diner and everyone’s got a favorite. With their expansive menus, the diner is the perfect spot for any time of day and every occasion whether you’re looking for a hearty breakfast, Mother’s Day brunch spot, dinner with friends, or a late night snack. Dig in at local favorites including Northport’s charming Shipwreck Diner, Roslyn’s Landmark Diner, and Islip’s Oconee Diner.

Must-Try Meals

Lobster Roll aka LUNCH (Amagansett)

A lobster roll next to fries and a cup of cole slaw at Lobster Roll AKA Lunch

Credit: @the_gluten_free_glutton_li on Instagram

Every good trip out to Long Island’s East End begins with a stop at this Hamptons institution that even made a cameo in Showtime’s The Affair. Make sure you pop into this retro-style seafood shack for classic hot and cold lobster rolls, fried clam strips, baked stuffed shrimp, and classic American fare before continuing on out to Montauk. And in case you were wondering, despite its name, Lobster Roll aka LUNCH also serves dinner.

Prime, An American Kitchen & Bar (Huntington)

People gather at the Wave Bar to enjoy food and drinks with views of Huntington Harbor at  Prime, An American Kitchen & Bar in Huntington

Can’t choose between sushi and steak? Lucky for you, Prime, An American Kitchen & Bar in Huntington has both. With a diverse and sophisticated menu boasting Mizu sushi, everything-crusted Montauk tuna, a decadent Wellington, and parmesan-crusted veal chop, this posh waterfront restaurant delivers on flavor and spectacular views of Huntington Harbor best enjoyed from the Wave Bar and intimate Fantail evoking a boat’s bow.

North Fork Table and Inn (Southold)

Indulge your senses at this charming countryside home where Michelin-starred chef John Fraser celebrates the bounty of Long Island’s farms, vineyards, and waterways with a delectable farm-to-table menu. Savor the local flavors with chilled Little Ram oysters, roasted Long Island fluke, and roasted Long Island duck from within the dining room or sprawling garden. Grab a  casual bite from the property’s seasonal food truck dishing out pop-up smash burgers and lobster rolls that make for the perfect North Fork picnic. 

Small Batch (Garden City) 

After a day of retail therapy at Roosevelt Field, it’s time to refuel at Small Batch, the brainchild of “Top Chef” star and eight-time James Beard Award winner Tom Colicchio. Not your typical mall restaurant, Small Batch’s open kitchen with centerpiece wood-fire grill overlooks a farmhouse-inspired space — the perfect compliment to a menu of rustic American fare (veal ricotta meatballs and Long Island Sound bouillabaisse) and elevated comfort foods (fried “hot” chicken sandwich and Wagyu cheeseburger with truffle pecorino cheese) emphasized by locally-sourced ingredients and North Fork wines

Red Salt Room (Garden City)

Interior view of the dining room at the Red Salt Room at the Garden City Hotel

Located in the luxurious Garden City Hotel, embark on a gastronomic journey through celebrity chef David Burke’s imaginative creations including his signature clothesline bacon and Himalayan salt-aged steaks at the equally elegant Red Salt Room. The restaurant serves up one of Nassau County’s most sought-after Sunday brunches, so make your reservation to feast on classic favorites like eggs Benedict and cinnamon French toast along with house made sushi rolls, lobster rolls, and more fresh catch selections.

Unique Dining Experiences

Maureen’s Kitchen (Smithtown) 

A croissant French toast stuffed with strawberries and bananas at Maureen's Kitchen

Credit: @jilly_eats_li on Instagram

With its generous portions and adorable cow-print decor, it’s no surprise that Maureen’s Kitchen is a breakfast and brunch hotspot. Whether you’re craving something sweet like the TV-famous croissant French toast stuffed with cream cheese, fruit, and chocolate chips or savory classic Reuben loaded with corned beef, Swiss cheese, sauerkraut and Russian dressing on grilled rye, there’s something for everyone on the menu filled with family recipes (including vegan and vegetarian options). 

Brew Cheese (Stony Brook and Northport) 

A person holds up a mug of beer and grilled cheese sandwich in front of a brick wall at Brew Cheese

Credit: @brewcheesenorthport on Instagram

The humble grilled cheese gets the ultimate gourmet makeover at this part artisanal cheese shop, part craft beer bar with locations at the charming Stony Brook Village Center and idyllic nautical village of Northport. Started by a Stony Brook University grad who has been certified as a Cheese Professional by the American Cheese Society, you can’t go wrong with one of their carefully-curated cheese boards or ooey gooey grilled cheese like The Smorgasboard (Buffalo wing cheddar, smoked gouda, French raclette, sriracha, and Brooklyn Brine’s “Damn Spicy” Pickles) and To Brie or Not To Brie (Brie, honey, fig jam and prosciutto on Sourdough). Don’t forget to wash it all down with a cold brew straight from the tap or wide selection of cans and bottles.

OHK Bar & Restaurant at OHEKA Castle (Huntington)

Aerial view of Oheka Castle with fountains and gardens leading up the entryway

Credit: @robthomasdrone on Instagram

Live out your Gatsby dreams as you wine and dine in a grand Gold Coast mansion. Join OHK Bar & Restaurant for a lavish brunch, lunch, or dinner to indulge in a unique culinary experience as you bask in the opulence of this French-style chateau featured in Taylor Swift’s “Blank Space” music video. Book an 11 am or 6 pm mansion tour of the estate and gardens and then reserve a table for lunch or dinner to have the ultimate Oheka experience.

Shou Sugi Ban House (Water Mill)

An outdoor table for dining at Shou Sugi Ban House

Nourish your mind, body, and soul at this luxurious spa and wellness retreat nestled on a three-acre sanctuary of zen in the Hamptons. Spa treatments and wellness rituals are rooted in Japanese philosophies that extend to the plant-forward culinary program designed in collaboration with Michelin-starred Chef Mads Refslund. The daily three-course lunch and dinner menu is crafted with market-fresh ingredients found on Long Island’s East End, to help you eat closer to the source and connect you to the season. Every meal is planned with careful attention to your needs, rounding out your wellness journey on a day visit or overnight stay. 

International Cuisine

GingerBites Haitian Bistro (Huntington Station) 

A plate of food at GingerBites Haitian Bistro in  Huntington Station

Credit: @gingerbites_ on Instagram

Looking to get a taste of the islands on Long Island? Gingerbites brings Caribbean traditions and flavors to life at its warm and cozy bistro with authentic Haitian dishes enhanced by local and organic ingredients. The griot, tasso, and akra croquette are crowd pleasers along with soup joumou, a traditional New Year’s Day dish symbolizing freedom that you can spoon up here all year round.

Besito (Roslyn, Huntington, and West Islip

A bowl of guacamole and chips at Besito

Craving Mexican? You can’t go wrong with this beloved local chain of high-end restaurants that showcases the flavors of Mexico from Veracruz-style fish to Sonoran-style baby back ribs in elegant dining rooms that feel like a private hacienda. The guacamole, made tableside so you can make it as hot and with as little or as much cilantro as you want, and their margaritas are always a hit.  

Churrasqueira Carvalhos Rodizio (Bellmore)

Bring your appetite because you’re about to get a true taste of Portugal. Voted best all-you-can-eat menu on Long Island, choose the rodizio for a unique barbecue experience and feast on as much meat as you want. Prime rib, pork loin, skirt steak, lamb chops, and more are  seasoned with a secret mix of herbs and spices then grilled to perfection over all-natural Portuguese wood charcoal and delivered to your table in an endless rotation. A selection of grilled fish, sides, and desserts round out the menu. 

O Mandarin (Hicksville) 

Fall in love with Chinese food all over again at O Mandarin. From the decor to the cuisine, this restaurant is an ode to Chinese culture. Elevated Northern Chinese dishes from the kitchen of chef Eric Gao, a James Beard Award semifinalist, bear an emphasis on traditional and authentic styles and flavors. The extensive menu featuring everything from jasmine tea smoked duck to Chengdu mouthwatering chicken (a must for spicy lovers) to familiar favorites like General Tso’s chicken will keep you coming back for more.  

Taka Sushi (Westbury) 

If there’s one thing to take away from Taka, it’s don’t sleep on strip mall sushi. Step inside this unassuming storefront, with a sign above the door that simply reads “Sushi Japanese Restaurant,” and you’ll discover an intimate dining space where chef-owner Taka Yamaguchi creates savory symphonies as maestro of the sushi counter, using only the freshest and highest-quality fish. Grab a seat and opt for the “omakase” to delight in a chef’s choice food experience. 

Sweet Treats

Disset Chocolate (Cutchogue) 

Indulge in some chocolate therapy with these bite-sized pieces of art handcrafted in the heart of the North Fork. Delight in decadent bonbons, chocolate covered macaroons, and chocolate bars with creative flavors like everything bagel and funfetti. Themed boxes celebrating holidays and seasons make for excellent gifts. For the perfect souvenir, pick up the “Ode to the North Fork” collection — a tribute to Long Island made in collaboration with local businesses like Little Ram Oysters and Peconic Bay Vineyards.

Marvel Frozen Dairy (Long Beach and Lido Beach) 

What’s better than ice cream by the beach? A Long Island institution since 1951, Marvel keeps summers cool by whipping up frozen treats from its window-serve spot in Lido Beach and boardwalk location in Long Beach, featured on the Long Island Ice Cream Tour. Treat yourself to classic soft serve with rainbow sprinkles, a milkshake, ice cream sandwich, popular pistachio strawberry swirl, peanut butter froyo, or vegan pomegranate mango twist.

Copenhagen Bakery (Northport) 

Who can resist the aroma of freshly baked bread? Follow your nose to this charming harborfront shop, billed as Long Island’s only Scandinavian bakery, where you’ll also find artisanal cakes, muffins, doughnuts, scones, pies, tarts, and traditional Danish treats. Enjoy a warm cup of coffee while savoring their famous Danish kringles (available in raspberry, almond and raisin, and apricot) or rich brownies made with Belgian chocolate, and stop in the cafe for breakfast and lunch favorites.

Buttercooky Bakery (Floral Park, Manhasset, Huntington)

“Baked with butter, makes it better” — that’s the slogan of this third-generation, family owned bakery and you’ll be sure to agree once you’ve had a taste. A Long Island staple for over 50 years, Buttercooky bakes up all the classics like cookies, pastries, and cakes, and keeps things fresh with trendy creations like crookies (croissants stuffed with cookie dough) that are perfect for your Instagram feed.

Doughology (Lynbrook and Babylon)

You dough-not want to miss out on these donuts! With locations in Lynbrook and Babylon, Doughology has turned making doughnuts into a science, crafting sweet concoctions like their uber popular rainbow cookie and cannoli doughnuts and super indulgent donut nachos. You can also keep things simple with classic flavors including glazed and powdered, or make your own doughnut creation.

Food-Centric Events

Famous Food Festival “Taste the World” 

Take your taste buds on a tantalizing and tasty global tour at the Famous Food Festival, held at the Tanger Outlets in Deer Park. Dig in as vendors from across the Tri-State area showcase dishes inspired by countries from all across the world. The weekend of festivities includes live music, cooking demonstrations, a beer and wine lounge, axe throwing, rock climbing, bumper cars, mini golf, and more. Deer Park; July 12-July 14, 2024

Seafood Festival 

Calling all seafood lovers! You don’t want to miss this signature summer event, held at the Long Island Maritime Museum. Get your fill of succulent seafood like fresh oysters, clams, lobster rolls, crab and more, stop by the main stage for live music, check out the arts and crafts fair, and find plenty of fun for the kids from face painting to sand art. West Sayville; August 24- 25, 2024

Long Island Garlic Festival

Get ready for a stinking good time as the Long Island Garlic Festival comes to Waterdrinker Family Farm. From garlic ice cream to garlic butter roasted corn, there will be plenty of garlicky goodness to enjoy at the vendor market and food trucks along with u-pick sunflowers and pumpkins, a corn maze, face painting, live music, and more. There will also be a garlic scavenger hunt and garlic-themed musical hayride. Manorville; September 16-17, 2024.

Oyster Fest 

Close up of an oyster with a dollop of hot sauce at Oyster Fest in Oyster Bay

Credit: @ashferbiju on Instagram

Get ready to shuck, slurp, and repeat at this weekend-long festival celebrating Long Island’s favorite mollusk. Try oysters in all its forms (on the half shell, fried, chowder, wood-fried) and other seafood favorites like shrimp and clams, feel the excitement of the oyster shucking and oyster eating contests, and find plenty of family-friendly fun from amusement rides to pirate shows at this event that has been a Long Island tradition for 40 years. Oyster Bay; October 19-20, 2024.

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