Busy autumn days give way to leisurely autumn weekends. This is a time for families to kick back together. Maybe visit a pumpkin farm. Or go apple picking.
Before heading off, think about going out together for pancakes.
There's nothing like a stack of flapjacks with real maple syrup at a restaurant table. Here are four places whose pancakes can kick off the day's activities.
COOKROOM, 25 Middle Country Rd., Middle Island, 631-696-4260
The "oaty oat" pancakes at this vintage diner are moist and tender, studded with apples and nuts. For an additional charge, you can get yours with real Vermont maple syrup.
EASTPORT LUNCHEONETTE, 497 Montauk Hwy., Eastport, 631-325-8887
This old-fashioned luncheonette serves pancakes that are far more delicate than most. Cut one open, and it's white and foamy-textured inside. Order yours made with whatever fruit is seasonal. Real maple syrup costs extra.
GRAND LUX CAFE, Roosevelt Field, 630 Old Country Rd., Garden City, 516-741-0096
This national chain serves a fine weekend brunch featuring the airiest, foamiest buttermilk pancakes. Get them studded with blueberries or topped with bananas and pecans, a warm brown sugar butter is served on the side. Real maple syrup, too.
PREMIER , 690 Commack Rd. Commack, 631-462-1432
What sets this gleaming diner apart from most of the genre is a creative and well-executed breakfast menu. Included are the pancakes -- plain, Swedish, fruit-filled or whole wheat -- are never heavy.