Robert Biancavilla’s breads and pastries used to be some of Long Island’s hardest-to-score delicacies, on sale only on Saturdays at his Huntington bakery and at the Northport farmers market. But now they are three times more available: Duck Island Bread Co. is open on Wednesdays and Thursdays as well.
The scarcity of his wares has hasn't kept Biancavilla out of the limelight; he was the subject of "Law and Order: SBU (Special Baking Unit)," an episode in the second season of Newsday's Feed Me TV.
The retail area here barely accommodates customers, but while you wait, you’ll have a great view of the kitchen: the “bench” where loaves are formed, the sheeter, which helps form the layers that make croissants and Danishes, the imported Pavailler oven in front of whose glass window the baker stands, transfixed, when he’s alone, baking.
Behind the counter are pain au levain, the great French sourdough, and sesame-seeded durum wheat loaves; olive-oil-rich fougasse (an herb-topped Provençal flatbread) and shatteringly crisp baguette, pretzels as well as burnished croissants and pains au chocolat, Danishes and the Breton specialty kouign amman (QUEEN-ah-MAHN), a superrich caramelized croissant baked in a muffin tin. Also scones, cookies and brownies. Most breads range between $5 and $7.50, pastries between $3 and $4.50.
Biancavilla’s business has been growing slowly but steadily since 2012, when the Suffolk County homicide prosecutor rented a commercial kitchen and began selling at the Northport market. In 2015 he opened the bakery on Route 25A, about two miles east of Huntington Village. In December 2017 he retired from the district attorney’s office and promised customers that expanded hours were forthcoming. A little more than a year later, they have arrived: The store is open Wednesday and Thursday, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Duck Island Bread Co. is at 201 E. Main St., Huntington, 631-223-2799, duckislandbreadcompany.com.