Outdoor live music has become synonymous with summer. Enjoying dinner and cocktails with some entertainment is a must on Long Island in July and August. Here are seven seasonal hot spots where you can take in some tunes.
This triple-layered venue on Cedar Beach exudes a vacation vibe with chill-out spots, dining tables and a deck loft amid palm trees. Bands perform nightly on an outdoor stage in front of an open dance floor with the Atlantic Ocean as a backdrop. Popular house drinks are Malibu Hurricanes, Babylon Mudslides and Lava Flows. The menu offers nibbles like crispy calamari or coconut shrimp while entrees include a braised short rib sandwich or an avocado salad. Don’t forget to get a selfie in the giant Adirondack chair on your way out.
INFO 100 Ocean Parkway, Babylon, 631-422-7222, saltshackny.com
TROPIX ON THE MILE
Freshly remodeled with Nantucket-style décor, this Nautical Mile staple offers a musical hybrid.
"We have both live bands and DJs," says owner Mike Danon. "Our goal is to create a fun atmosphere in an open-air environment."
Live bands take the stage on Wednesday and Thursday evenings while DJs spin Tuesday and Friday nights. If you are looking for a daylight hang, bands also perform Saturday and Sunday afternoons and DJs get the crowd moving at night.
Dine under umbrellas along the Woodcleft Canal or kick back with a "frosé" (frozen rosé wine) on one of the outdoor couches.
INFO 395 Woodcleft Ave., Freeport, 516-623-8767, tropixonthemile.com
GREENPORT HARBOR BREWING CO.
Bring a lawn chair or blanket to spread out on the grass of the brewery’s pet-friendly, 1.5-acre field bordered by local vineyards as bands perform on the outdoor stage on Saturdays from 5 to 8 p.m. or Sundays from 4 to 7 p.m.
"We always have 13 fresh beers on tap including our seasonal Summer Ale and our raspberry flavored thirst quencher UPick," says co-owner John Liegey. "For our 12th anniversary, we are even producing an American light lager called ’12,’ which is sold in 12 packs."
Brews can be paired with giant Bavarian pretzels, kielbasa sandwiches or a pot of mussels.
INFO 42155 Main Rd., Peconic, 631-477-1100, greenportharborbrewing.com
Seeking live music seven nights a week? Head to this laid-back outdoor patio on the Rockaway Canal where the mic is always on.
"Our music is all upbeat from classic rock to dance party music," says co-owner Kevin Sheehan, who operates the venue with partners Shaun Manning and Brian Shields. "We keep it casual. You can come in with flip-flops and shorts."
Enjoy a 25 beer selection and signature drinks like watermelon margaritas or mango tangos paired with Chef Patrick Baldi’s dishes like lava lava shrimp or his signature poke rice bowls.
INFO 1 Main St., East Rockaway, 516-341-7222, thereelli.com
For a more low-key live music experience, dine in a Victorian garden surrounded by hydrangeas, hibiscus, giant holly and coneflowers as bands perform easy listening music from the bar area five nights a week and Sunday afternoons.
"We don’t rush our clientele out," says owner Fred Marsilio. "We want people to enjoy themselves."
Dinner ranges from steaks and chops to jambalaya and a variety of pasta entrees like sausage and broccoli rabe over orecchiette.
INFO 64 N. Country Rd., Smithtown, 631-265-8771, thegardengrill.com
POPEI’S CLAM BAR
Those who are feeling fishy can dig into some seafood on the back deck of this Coram joint where the live music shifts gears from night to night.
"Wednesdays we do oldies from 6 to 9 p.m., while Fridays and Saturdays focus on ‘90s alternative from 9 p.m. to midnight," says owner Ralph Reale. "On Sundays, we get started earlier with a reggae theme from 4 to 7 p.m."
Try the zuppa di pesce (shrimps, scallops, calamari, scungilli, and mussels in a marinara sauce) while sipping a blueberry bliss martini (muddled blueberries, blueberry vodka, fresh lemon, agave with a sugar rim).
INFO 451 Middle Country Rd., Coram, 631-696-4029, popeisclambaronline.com
ANTHONY’S ON THE LAKE
Catch the live music happening Friday and Saturday nights on the patio overlooking Lake Ronkonkoma.
"Our focus is on fun," says owner Anthony Pellegrino. "We have everything from jazz to rock to country line dancing to drag queens. It’s dinner and a show."
Food favorites include lobster rolls and southern fried chicken with waffles. Meanwhile, the summer favorite at the bar is the ice cone cocktail.
"Our ice roll machine melds liquor into ice cream and freezes it into a little cigar formation, which we serve in a martini glass," says Pellegrino. "It melts in your mouth."
INFO 22 Old Portion Rd., Lake Ronkonkoma, 631-981-4242, anthonysonthelake.com