The new operator of the Central Mall concessions, Elias Trahanas,...

The new operator of the Central Mall concessions, Elias Trahanas, holding a taco at Jones Beach. Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.

This summer at Jones Beach, hungry sunbathers will have their choice of food, from fried Oreos to lobster rolls, tacos and clams.

Elias Trahanas, a former Manhattan attorney starting his second year running concessions at Jones Beach, is expanding his footprint to include the Central Mall and the Boardwalk Café in addition to Field 6 and the Eastern Bathhouse.

At the Boardwalk Cafe, Trahanas is opening a Mexican restaurant, Taco BAE, which stands for tacos before anything else. He said they will serve authentic tacos, burritos, Mexican salads, burrito bowls and loaded nachos.

He is also opening a new ice cream counter at the Central Mall, which will serve authentic Italian gelato flavors like black cherry, sea salt caramel, chocolate peanut butter and biscotti cookies and cream. The gelato is homemade every day at Robert Moses State Park.

The Central Mall will also serve classic staples like hamburgers, hot dogs, sandwiches and chicken fingers, and seafood like clams, cod, shrimp, crabcakes and calamari.

Trahanas said he was hoping for a big Memorial Day weekend and trying to keep up with the crowds drawn to the Bethpage Air Show, which was to be held Saturday and Sunday.

The air show is usually the signature event at the beach, drawing more than 150,000 people. On Saturday, however, the show was first delayed and then ultimately canceled due to the threat of severe weather.

Sunday is expected to be sunny and warm, with highs in the upper 70s.

“I think it’s the best weekend event,” Trahanas said. “We’re going to do our very best and we're looking forward to seeing everyone again. It’s going to be nice to see people after a long pandemic to kick off the season right. Long Islanders are going to show up.”

Meanwhile, lobster rolls, fried Oreos and salad will all be on the menu at Jones Beach’s Field 1 and 2 this summer — but beachgoers will likely have to wait until next year for pizza.

Frank Costa, who was awarded the contract for Field 1 and 2 concessions last year, had hoped to install a pizza oven this year, but said it is being delayed by issues such as permitting and now likely won’t be operational until 2023.

But even though there might not be pizza, Costa, who ran concessions at Rye Playland for 37 years, has big plans for this summer.

“A lot of retro food. Lobster rolls, clams on the half-shell,” he said. “We'll do a twist on amusement park food, too. The funnel cakes, the fried Oreos — stuff you wouldn't expect at the beach."

Asked whether fried clams might also be on the menu, he quickly answered, “Bite your tongue! We do all stuff that is fresh. I'm never going to fry a clam.”

Costa said he’s also going to run ice cream carts at all the beach locations, not just Fields 1 and 2. The carts will offer frozen fruit as well.

And, says Costa, he plans to have live music this year, from calypso to top 40 cover bands.

"We're not going to put Metallica in here," he said — at least for now.

“The only reason I run food concessions is I'm an old rocker, so we'll see how it works out — and maybe one day you'll all be surprised at the bands we get in here,” he said.

Costa and Trahanas, whose family ran the Golden Reef Diner in Bellmore for 40 years, were awarded concessions contracts last year after New York State Parks, which operates Jones Beach, opened its concessions bidding to vendors in an effort to bring a new variety of drinks and food, state parks regional director George Gorman said.