It has been a suspenseful few months for those passing by the brick building at 12 E. Main St. in Bay Shore. Steadily, a dramatic looking new restaurant has been taking shape there.
On Friday night, Jan. 12, the wait was over: Coastal Kitchen & Daiquiri Bar began slinging its first Cuba Libre cocktails and dishing up its mofongo bites.
The year-long renovation of the 1930s-era space, which long held Bay Shore Furriers, was led by owner Anthony Tartaglia and his team; Tartaglia also owns nearby Verde Kitchen & Cocktails.
They’ve created a coppery-toned 50-seat bar and eatery rife with distressed wood and patina, as well as a Caribbean and island-influenced menu of snacks, sandwiches and a few larger plates cooked by executive chef Zachary Rude (also the chef at Verde). Featured are garlicky mofongo bites ($12) of mashed plantains, pork belly, shrimp, criollo spices and culantro (a Caribbean herb also called chadon beni) for $12. A Cubano sandwich is piled with house-cured ham and roast pork, house-cured pickles, melted gruyere and a dark-rum-molasses mustard sauce on medianoche bread, similar to challah, for $14. A lobster roll also makes an appearance.
Befitting its name, Coastal Kitchen also has a 27-foot-long zinc bar and a cocktail menu that includes two daiquiris, including the version popularized by writer Ernest Hemingway — with Havana Club rum, grapefruit and lime juices, and Luxardo maraschino liqueur — as well as another made with Rhum Agricole, aloe and lime juices, “It’s super floral, earthy, funky and a little sweet,” Tartaglia said of the latter. Both daiquiris are $12. Another cocktail — a Cuba Libre with housemade cola — is $11, and a coconut-washed rum Negroni is $14.
Of a dozen draft lines, one is devoted to cold-brewed coffee and another pours a house Coastal Coconut IPA made by Bay Shore’s Destination Unknown Brewing Company. A pool table, shuffleboard, dart boards and jukebox encourage lingering. “We’re trying to be more of a bar than a restaurant,” said Tartaglia.
For now, Coastal Kitchen opens at 11:30 a.m daily, and will stay open until 11 p.m. Sunday to Thursday and “probably 12 or 1,” on Friday and Saturday, Tartaglia said. Saturday brunch will be added soon.
Coastal Kitchen & Daiquiri Bar, 12 E. Main St., Bay Shore. 631-665-3030. coastalliny.com.