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North Fork Foodie Tour returns to Long Island for 15th year

Eric Sepenoski, a fourth generation farmer at Sep's

Eric Sepenoski, a fourth generation farmer at Sep's Farm, his wife Brenna and their son Henry, 5. Credit: Randee Daddona

Sunday marks the crystal anniversary of the North Fork Foodie Tour, the annual self-guided exploration of the North Fork’s agricultural and culinary treasures.

Ticket holders have access to a dozen venues, as well as the opportunity to meet farmers, artisans and chefs who turn the region's agricultural bounty into some of Long Island’s most celebrated foods.

In 2006, about 200 people embarked on the first tour organized by the North Fork Reform Synogogue in Cutchogue; that figure had almost tripled by 2019. Last year’s "tour" occurred solely online via Zoom, but still managed to draw more than 150 people to view prerecorded farm tours and live webinars.

This year’s tour is bigger and better than ever and has added two new farms to the lineup: Sep’s Farm in East Marion, owned and operated by the same family for 50 years, is a cult favorite for corn. At Naked Farm (est. 2014) in East Marion, Michael Chuisano uses old-fashioned methods to produce newfangled micro greens as well as organic vegetables.

Tour-goers can chart their own course for the afternoon, using the map as a guide to navigate special tours and demos planned for the day.

Returning participants include Goodale Farm in Riverhead, Long Island’s only full scale dairy farm, which plans to host three guided tours that cover how cheese is made. Browder’s Birds in Mattituck has expanded from chickens to ducks and sheep; Sang Lee Farms in Peconic and Satur Farms in Cutchogue, the granddaddies of North Fork organic farming. Tour-goers can meet the goats and see how cheese is made at Catapano Dairy Farm in Peconic, and head to Lavender by the Bay in East Marion for fresh and dried plants.

The tour's headquarters is at the Cutchogue Village Green (Case’s Lane and Route 25/Main Road) and there will be a full lineup of speakers there as well, including veteran beekeeper Chris Kelly of Promise Land Apiaries in Mattituck; passionate chocolatier Ursula XVII of Disset Chocolate in Cutchogue; Mimi Edelman of I & Me Farm in Orient, whose mission is to save heirloom crops that are at risk of extinction; Chris Pinto of Feisty Acres Farm in Southold, who will talk about the joys and challenges of raising specialty poultry (quail, pheasant, partridge, etc.) and Peter Stein of Peeko Oysters, which he raises in Little Peconic Bay.

The entire itinerary is outdoors and masks are required.

North Fork Foodie Tour

WHEN | WHERE 10 a.m.-4 p.m. SundaySept12 at partcipating farms and food purveyors from Riverhead to Orient

INFO 631-722-5712, northforkfoodietour.com

TICKETS $30 (free for little foodies ages 12 and younger). Advance tickets available online or in person at Mattituck Florist (95 Love Lane), Complement the Chef (53740 Main Rd., Southold) and Green Earth Natural Foods (50 E. Main St., Riverhead). The day of the tour, tickets can be purchased at all tour locations, including at the Cutchogue Village Green.

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