Christmas came a little late for me this year, but Santa appears to have granted my perpetual wish for more New England-style seafood shacks on Long Island.
The Village Raw Bar opened on Jan. 2 in a narrow Rockville Centre storefront that used to be a Subway. But owner L.J. Sealey has erased all traces of cheap luncheon meat with a spare, chic design — walls, wainscoting and pressed ceiling are varying shades of white and cream; the tables and long bar are done in warm wood.
The concept for The Village Raw Bar is adapted from a raw bar that Sealey’s family owns in Hyannis on Cape Cod. Oysters are front and center, with one evening’s varieties coming from Massachusetts (Wellfleet and Duxbury), Long Island (Lucky 13) and Canada (Beau Soleil and Malpeque).
Other classic fare includes baked clams, New England clam chowder, lobster rolls (hot, with butter, or cold, with mayonnaise), steamed lobsters, peel-and-eat shrimp and fish and chips (with hand-cut fries). Less classic: spicy wings, jerk chicken, pan-seared salmon with honey-roasted carrots and something called “The Village Idiot”: broiled lobster topped with truffled corn, jumbo lump crab and buttered Parmesan crumbs. Appetizers, soups, salads and sandwiches range from $8 to $15, mains from $15 to $33.
There’s also an ambitious drinks menu with signature cocktails and nonalcoholic juices, craft beers (including Barrier Brewing from Oceanside and Allagash White from Portland, Maine) and an espresso bar.
The Village Raw Bar is at 88 N. Village Ave., Rockville Centre, 516-678-9888, villagerawbar.com.