A charming little breakfast and lunch cafe is embedded within The Gourmet Whaler, an eclectic gift-and-food specialty shop in Cold Spring Harbor. What makes it an eating destination is the culinary expertise of co-owner Shawn Leonard, a lifelong CSH resident whose father opened the original Whaler’s Inn (where Harbor Mist is today).
Amid lots of country bric-a-brac, one certainly doesn't expect to encounter some of the best fish tacos in the area, but that’s what I found. Thick pieces of fresh-caught cod, crisply panko-crusted, were heaped onto two soft corn tacos, topped with zesty chipotle mayo and red cabbage slaw, served with a side of tropical fruit salsa ($11.95). Leonard also offers big, light and fluffy pancakes, served, properly, with pure Vermont maple syrup ($7.50).
The place is open Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m and Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Gourmet Whaler is at 111 Main St., Cold Spring Harbor, 631-692-9646.