Bay Shore is home to a new seafood restaurant, Salt & Barrel Oyster and Craft Cocktail Bar, the commercial anchor for the new downtown apartment complex, Village Place.
Salt & Barrel is owned by the Flynn family, which operates Flynn’s Fire Island, the restaurant-bar-venue-marina that has been a fixture in Ocean Bay Park since 1937. Partner Ryan Flynn said that for all its proximity to the Great South Bay, Bay Shore was curiously short on seafood restaurants. Salt & Barrel hopes to mitigate that situation with a modern menu that takes inspiration from the classic oyster bar.
Chef Alexander Williamson (formerly of Manhattan’s Veritas, Morimoto and Gramercy Tavern, among other restaurants) offers starters ($10 to $14) such as crispy rock shrimp with Fresno chili, charred lemon and spicy mayo; charred baby octopus with quinoa salad; baked clam toast (an appealing cross between bruschetta and linguine with clam sauce); roasted carrot salad with avocado, coffee-espelette pepper and crème frâiche.
There are “sea pots” of mussels with bourbon, burnt orange and cream ($28), and steamed clams with dashi, sweet sausage and Kaffir lime ($23). Mains include salmon with saffron-fennel purée ($29); squid ink fettuccine with clams, shishito peppers and oven-dried tomato ($25); and confit of chicken with duck-fat roasted cabbage ($25). Bar plates include a warm lobster roll with butter-poached lobster ($24) and the S & B burger with bacon, tomato aioli and Gruyère ($17).
The focal point of the swanky-looking bar is a proper raw bar, with oyster shooters, freshly shucked oysters (East and West coasts) and clams, tuna tartare and plateaux of shellfish. During happy hour (weekdays, 4 to 6:30 p.m.), oysters, usually $3 to $4 apiece, are half price.
On the drinks front, there are a dozen boutique wines (all available by the glass), a dozen rotating craft beers and 40 small-batch bourbons.
Salt & Barrel is at 61 W. Main St., Bay Shore; 631-647-8818, saltandbarrel.com