Why Sayville is a Foodie Destination for Long Island Foodies

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Buzz can technically be invisible, but you can still watch him in real time as he jumps from location to location – from Huntington to Patchogue, Patchogue to Bay Shore – like a spark that pulls the creatives in its wake. , chiefs and urban emigrants.

Where do the embers land in 2021? In this bay hamlet with the deep roots of the sea, the place where a million oysters have been peeled and Main Street is so cute you almost want to pinch its cheeks.

“If you drive fast, Sayville looks small, but is packed with so many good things. It’s a hidden gem of the South Shore, ”said Eileen Tyznar, president of the Grand Sayville Chamber of Commerce, who moved to the hamlet decades ago and still springs from its people, small businesses and street parties, although these have not quite returned to where they were before COVID-19. “We hold our breath to see when we can have the biggest events we’re known for.”

The streets of Sayville are lined with salt flats, Victorians, and airy porches than you could ever sit in a lifetime. Despite its Mayberry appearance, however, the hamlet is home to its share of quirk: a crystal shop, a walkable maze (in Rotary Park), a newly opened herbal grocery store called Clementine’s, and a natural wine store called Down The Rabbit Hole. , the latter two extremely rare on Long Island. There’s a hidden vineyard, Loughlin Vineyard, and the Long Island Maritime Museum, a sprawling place where you can learn about every shipwreck that ever happened on Long Island.

Amidst the charms of Sayville, a tide of things to eat and drink, from lobster pizza on the patio at La Tavola to mezcal cocktails at The Shed (just outside of downtown) to baked clams baked and bonhomie at Café Joelle, a local hangout where tables can be hard to find in prime time.

There’s a lot of ‘coming’ vibe all over town (for a bar and grill, juice bar, cafe) as well as newish faces on the block: A herbal store selling fudge, called Nettle & Rose, in West Sayville; Clementine’s, where you can land plant-based fried “chicken” on waffles; a longtime drugstore turned spice shop, Sayville N Spice, where you can choose from dozens of hot sauces. And Sayville is a great place to find a burger: no less than seven places, including the 18-month-old Sayville Athletic Club, boast superlative versions.

This apparent burgeoning renaissance didn’t come without a hustle, however: Last summer, in a scramble to save their downtown businesses, the community raised $ 28,000 through ticket sales and movie donations. drive-in at the Islip Grange, money the Chamber was helping support businesses during the darkest days of COVID.

“We ask, what do you need? Do you need PPE? Or a month’s rent?” Tyznar recalled. “It’s our job to help [business owners] in good times and bad. COVID hasn’t erased us, but we are still rebuilding. “

For Chloe Jones, who opened Clementine’s with her mother, Cira Jones, earlier this year, there was no other place she wanted to run the business she had worked for for years. “That’s where we come from and we know the people. It’s an area rich in community, ”Jones said. She is aware that herbal plants can seem foreign or expensive, and strives to keep dishes like eggplant meatballs and banh mi within a reasonable price range. “I wanted to make food that everyone could love, not just the vegan community, and provide great food that isn’t overpriced.”

Here are some of the new faces of Sayville and a few words about those set to debut in the coming months.

Clementine’s herbal grocery store and bakery (4836 Sunrise Highway, Sayville). Chloe Jones wasn’t expressly planning on opening a vegan grocery store, but over the years she has spent perfecting herbal recipes – triggered after she was pregnant with her first child – friends have kept telling Jones that she should. “I was baking several cakes a week, and I would fail a lot but I would continue to work on recipes.” The long-term result is a work of succulent cupcakes, muffins and pies, as well as savory dishes such as vegan crab cakes (made with chickpeas, artichokes and Old Bay) and fried “chicken”. (really, seitan) on waffles. Each week’s menu, posted on social media, is slightly different, from roasted jackfruit mills to enchiladas. A take-out case is filled with jackfruit mac and cheese, butternut squash lasagna, and other entrees, while a soft serving machine dispenses oat milk ice cream. There are three tables for dining on site. Most large plates and sandwiches cost between $ 10 and $ 13, and the deli opens at 11 a.m. Friday through Sunday with extended hours ahead. More information: 631-664-1270, veggingoutatclementimes.com

Nettle and Rose (77 Main St., West Sayville): This adorable West Sayville boutique owned by Bay Rose is akin to a tiny apothecary, and behind its pale pink facade are herbal-infused oils, creams and hydrosols for everything, from building immunity to capturing more ZZZ. . Stuck in the middle of tinctures and topicals, there are also edible and drinkable things, like cinchona elixir (for making soda), herbal infused sparkling water, and a display case filled with fudge, caramel and spherical bites like Berry Goodness, orbs of pressed cashew, coconut, blueberries, cherries, elderberry, raspberry and pea protein. Open Friday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. More info: 631-589-3580 nettleandrose.com

Main Street Dinner (229 W. Main Street, Sayville). Phil Collins filters through the speakers, vintage etched glass separates the brown leather booths, and retro wallpaper supports the counter – the intimate setting for extended breakfasts of Nutella pancakes or cheese omelets. Only the new owners of this long-time restaurant don’t stop at classics, nor compose anything. Inside this recent refurbishment of the old Sea Crest Diner, there’s also shakshuka, the North African-origin egg and tomato pan, plus a Greek version of huevos rancheros with fried eggs, warm pita wedges and chickpea salsa. Admire a checkerboard cake from the pastry box, and manager Gus Panagatos might spontaneously give you a slice of it “just to try, and maybe you will have it next time.” Panagatos said that since opening last summer – the restaurant had opened briefly before COVID – times have been “very tough,” but the take out and outside seating keeps things going, and the the kitchen’s commitment to putting a unique twist on the dinner fare will never go down. Open daily from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. More info: 631-567-5376. themainstreetdiner.com

Sayville Athletic Club (209 Railroad Avenue, Sayville). It’s been 18 months since the Sayville Athletic Club opened in fall 2019, but as COVID time is wasted, this rotation seen on a sports bar is still fairly new to Sayville. A welcoming place with lots of memorabilia on the walls (including mounted deer heads), the drink list is basically excellent as is the food, which consists of wings, burgers, and other pub standards. On Sundays, this is the place to find ribs and brisket (including brisket filled tacos and brisket nachos) from MEAT Bbq’s Dustin and Jennifer Ross. Open from 12 p.m. to 11 p.m. Tuesday to Sunday and from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Monday. More info: 631-319-1700. Instagram: @sayvilleathleticclub

Sayville n spice (2 Main Street, Sayville). This year-long renovation of Thornhill’s century-old pharmacy to a spice shop was undertaken with TLC by Lauri and Matthew LaPiana. He’s a court stenographer, he’s an architect, and together they’ve preserved the essence of the building, turning old pallets into a center island and reclaimed wood and old crates of herbs into shelves. “It got intense,” said Matthew LaPiana of the transformation; he still has some of the old pharmacy records in his custody. The airy, modern space excludes a lot of vintage vibe as you browse through hundreds of spices and hot sauces, from garam masala and barbecue rubs to hot sauces interspersed with searing ghost peppers. Spices are ordered from a dramatic curved counter, echoing drugstore counters of yore. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. More information: 631-589-0005, sayvillenspice.com

Coming soon

Sayville is expected to gain at least five new food businesses in the coming months: east of town, a stunning new bar, Sayville Bait & Tackle, will move into the former Halfpenny Pub home and be managed by an amalgamation of Bay Shore business owners The Linwood (Drew Dvorkin), Local Burger and TJ Finley’s (Mike McElwee, Zach Digirolomo). “We’ll be showcasing a water rescue setting,” Dvorkin said, along with a 15-meter bar, regional beer and a sipping rum menu, as well as food including lobster rolls, sandwiches, burgers and specialties.

At the east end of town, owner Ron Montgomery will open the Six Juice Bar, with fresh juices and healthy bites, in the same place as Sandwicherie Sayville. The owner of Cafe Joelle on Main Street, James Caporuscio (who also happens to be a champion poker player), is busy working on Greenery, a quick and casual restaurant focused on bowls and salads in the space where the American Cheese was located. And Tyznar said a cafe and brunch are on deck for West Sayville and Sayville, respectively, for later this year.



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