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DINING OUT ON THE NORTH FORK, WHERE TO GO?

t
tracyb Aug 26, 2006 05:25 PM

I AM PLANNING TO BE IN GREENPORT MID OCTOBER, LOOKING FOR GREAT LOCAL EATS IN A TOP NOTCH PLACE....ANY SUGGESTIONS?
STAYING AT THE THE HARBORFRONT INN IN GREENPORT......ANYONE HAVE THOUGHTS ON THIS HOTEL AS WELL???

  1. Fred19 Sep 1, 2006 12:34 PM

    A nice place, sort of an old standby in Polish Town, Riverhead is the Birchwood on Pulaski Street. It used to be very crowded, but with the opening of Boulder Creek and Applebees, J&Rs, etc it has become easier. They have good salads, sandwiches and hot plates and their prices are excellent. The decor is real memorabilia, and there are a few Polish dishes on the menu. They have a terrific rib steak and some of the smothered platters are fantastic.

    Also, J&Rs on Rt25 in Calverton is very good. We share a salad with grilled chioken and it is a tremendous plate. Goes great with an onion soup. They have extremeley inexpensive, but good steaks.

    ~Fred19

    1. m
      mrbeachy Aug 31, 2006 05:56 PM

      as far as i know, cliff's rendezvous and either elbow east or elbow too are still owned by the same family i do not know whether they sold elbow east or elbow too.

      also,i do plan to go shopping at tanger on sunday and i dont want mall food and ive been to the peconic bay diner many times. i have also been to the rendezvous on main st in riverhead and have had many good meals there,but i may want to try something different this time. has anyone been to the modern snack bar lately? last time i was there it was very good but it has become quite pricey. Can someone recommend any other good places that are a short drive from tanger? please let me know..thanks..

      2 Replies
      1. re: mrbeachy
        d
        Dyna Sep 1, 2006 01:00 AM

        Three suggestions near Tanger: One is a hard to find little place called Farm Country on W. Main St. in Riverhead - from the outside, it looks like a residence. It's partly a takeout place and it has excellent wraps, soups and salads. There's an outdoor porch in back and a couple of tables inside. Another alternative is a pretty good El Salvadoran place called the Latino Cafe on Old Country Rd. - it used to be a Turkish restaurant and it's in a shopping center near a place called Lobster Wok that I've never eaten in. Plus there's also Tweeds in Riverhead, if bison's your thing.

        1. re: Dyna
          coll Sep 1, 2006 08:36 AM

          And if bison's not your thing, don't even bother, the only regular steak on the menu is a filet mignon in some kind of sauce.
          Right next door to Tweeds, try Athens Grill, it has some of the best Greek food I've ever had. Lots of fresh local fish dishes, and I love their moussaka.
          Also a little farther down, past the Aquarium, try Taqueria Mexico, very authentic Mexican. I always get their red or green chicken mole, but my husband always tries something different and we haven't had one mediocre dish yet. They're in the tiny strip mall on the right just past the railroad tracks. We also like Latino Cafe, they're Salvadorian I think, make great fish empanadas. They got in trouble recently for serving liquor to underage (or maybe without a license) so hope they're still open. Oh and we love Lobster Wok, great Chinese and fresh squeezed juices with ginger. Don't think you can eat in though.
          If you want sit down Chinese, Hyting in town next to Diggers has very good, old fashioned Chinese; even the atmosphere is very 60s/70s. Lots of big booths so you can rest after all your shopping!

      2. j
        Jimmy Aug 30, 2006 04:17 PM

        Yes, you are probably right...it must have been Jamesport. I have not been there since 1982....but I do remember that it definetly was called the Elbow Room and my description of the menu and the incredible Steaks has not dimmed over the years...but obviously my memory has LOL...one thing I do seem to recall is that there was a very old and small cemetery nearby. I do intend to go back once again so I hope it IS in Jamesport...this is a good example of the saying " With Age come CRAFT "..Can't Remember a F****** Thing ! "

        1. coll Aug 29, 2006 11:05 PM

          I'm confused. I know Cliff's Rendezvous in Riverhead, which is not exactly connected to the other Cliffs, and I know the Elbow Rooms in Jamesport and Laurelton, which are the "real" Cliffs. And I've been to the one, can't remember the exact name, in Southold, on the beach, which is nothing like the above establishments, that has an extended menu with nothing really great on it. Is there really a Cliffs in Greenport? This is weirding me out.

          2 Replies
          1. re: coll
            gnocchi Aug 29, 2006 11:44 PM

            Well, they did say just west of Greenport off Sound Ave, so that would be the Southold place at the end of Kenny's Road which is/was Cliff's Elbow East. There is an Elbow Too in Laurel and the original Elbow Room in Jamesport. Also the Rendezvous that you mentioned in Riverhead. There is no such place right in Greenport proper or in Laurelton, Queens.
            Maybe when Jimmy recalled Greenport he really meant Jamesport for the Elbow Room, he had the "port" part correct anyways.

            Cliff Saunders at one time owned all these places plus one in Hampton Bays for a few years. I believe over the years and when Mr. Saunders died the family may have divested one or more of the places, I heard they don't have the Southold place anymore, but I could be wrong. Stick to the steaks, burgers at lunch, try the baked clams, manhattan chowder.

            1. re: coll
              Fred19 Aug 30, 2006 03:23 PM

              The one out just west of Greenport is called Kenny's and is on Kenny's Road in Southold. Usually very long waits to get in, and scarecely worth waiting for.

            2. f
              feelinpeckish Aug 29, 2006 07:51 PM

              Elbow Room (called Cliff's Elbow East in it's earlier days - though still connected to family) is not only there (just west of Greenport off Sound Ave) but has two other locations further west but I would stick to the east end location. Same menu essenntially - steak, marinated or not and a few reliable fish choices. My advice is to choose the marinated porterhouse or filet or if fish is your aim, then it would be lobster or just their simple treatment of shrimp (fried) or if in season then bay scallops. That's it. It is a casual and enjoyable spot for an evenings meal. We were very regular visitors in years past when we sailed out of Greenport harbor. Though we visit there less frequently than before, Cliff's Elbow East is almost always the restaurant of choice vs the tangle of new and much higher priced places in the village proper.

              1 Reply
              1. re: feelinpeckish
                JGS Sep 1, 2006 02:54 AM

                IMHO...this is the worst of the Elbow locations. Seems more like a nursing home in ambience and decor and the food is sub par. Not worth the bother.

                If anyone is doing any of the Elbow Room locations--try Laurel or Jamesport.

              2. j
                Jimmy Aug 29, 2006 02:20 PM

                Well, I do not know if the place is still open, but there was a very small restaurant called the Elbow Room in Greenport that served only two dishes. A house special Steak with the usual potato and salad sides and one or two fish selections, depending on whatever was fresh off the boats that day. It had about 12 tables and zero atmosphere but I can tell you that their Steaks were the best I ever had anywhere.. their secret was a special bourbon marinade and when the Steak arrived it looked completely blackened...but when you cut into it it would just explode with flavor and texture..anyway, I will pass on the exact words to you that the gal who turned me on to the place said.. " Just forget the room, order the steak with fries and slaw and two Heinekens. "
                I live in Maine now and have often wondered if the place was still in business and if it was still as good..as I remember it, the line used to be out the door and down the street most week-ends.
                But I have a feeling some Chowhound will know. Enjoy your trip, Greenport is lovely this time of year.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Jimmy
                  t
                  tracyb Aug 29, 2006 03:08 PM

                  REST ASSURED THE ELBOW ROOM IS ALIVE AND WELL. I AGREE, THE BEST STEAK I'VE EVER HAD........

                2. g
                  gardener Aug 28, 2006 01:50 PM

                  In Greenport you may also try The FRISKY OYSTER on Rt 25,and nearby The FIFTH SEASON and on the harborfront, The SCRIMSHAW. All offer good quality and some local fare.

                  1. d
                    Dyna Aug 26, 2006 07:36 PM

                    Definitely North Fork Table & Inn - the food is tops in the area - chef from Aureole (Gerry Hayden) and pastry chef from Gramercy Tavern (Claudia Fleming). You might also want to try Vine Wine Bar in Greenport for a late afternoon glass of wine with something nice to eat. And rest easy; you made a fine hotel choice in terms of comfort and amenities.

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