Whether you’re sipping a fancy cocktail served in a goldfish bowl, sharing a pile of steamers with friends at a communal table or rocking out to a cover band, cold brew in hand, the Nautical Mile — Freeport’s summertime party destination — offers a handful of ways to bask in the joys of the season and not take yourself too seriously. No matter if it’s your first visit or 50th, consider these new and updated destinations along Woodcleft Avenue.
Prime 23 Steaks & Seafood
The Nautical Mile just got meatier, with the opening of Prime 23 Steaks & Seafood (23 Woodcleft Ave.), sharing ownership with and occupying the top floor of EB Elliot’s. Look for seafood towers and lobster sliders, while steak and chops range from the coveted porterhouse to Colorado lamb chops. The sushi menu is a new addition, with rolls served in both restaurants and on the deck. Happy hour runs weekdays from noon to 7 p.m. with plenty of drink specials and a free buffet at 4 p.m. More info: 516-378-8776, prime23steakhouse.com
Bone-in-ribeye is served at Prime 23 Steaks & Seafood on the Nautical Mile in Freeport.
Oysters Rockefeller is served at Prime 23 Steaks & Seafood on the Nautical Mile in Freeport.
Island by the Sea
Island by the Sea (300 Woodcleft Ave.) opened in October across the street from the water, with a charming mural of the sea as décor. The super-casual 60-seat restaurant has gained fans for its spicy oxtail with plenty of scotch bonnets, as well as curry lobster and red snapper. It’s a family affair, with Audrey Williams overseeing the kitchen, the mother-in-law of owner Terry Ann Wallace — both with ties to Jamaica. Wallace’s nephew is the manager and her niece is the lone server. Island by the Sea is open from noon to 11 p.m. weekdays and until 1 a.m. weekends. More info: 516-442-3632, islandbythesea.com
Jerk chicken with steamed vegetables, rice and peas is served at Island by the Sea on the Nautical Mile in Freeport.
In keeping with the restaurant's Caribbean theme, rum punch is one of the signature cocktails at Island by the Sea on the Nautical Mile in Freeport.
Nawlins Seafood Company
The French Quarter meets the Nautical Mile at Nawlins Seafood Company (301 Woodcleft Ave.), a breezy space framed by murals and wrought iron that promises a visit as rambunctious as a trip to New Orleans. Ivan Sayles and Rich Venticinque — who also own and operate Rachel’s Waterside Grill — are partners along with Sal Bisulca. Grab a seat at the bar near the entrance and order an Abita. Or head to the back of the dining room for a table with plenty of room to spread out plates of fried green tomatoes, an oyster po’boy, a muffuletta, or chicken and waffles. The back deck offers the most laid-back seating, a perfect spot for sunset or to watch the boats go by. More info: 516-206-8100 nawlinsseafood.com
The catfish po'boy is served at Nawlins Seafood Company on Freeport's Nautical Mile.
Crawfish etouffee is one of the specialties at Nawlins Seafood Company on the Nautical Mile in Freeport.
El Toro 28
If it’s tequila you’re after, make a beeline for El Toro 28 (229 Woodcleft Ave.). The restaurant — revamped for the summer 2016 season — stocks more than 100 bottles. The dining room is accented with sugar-skulls and Day of the Dead-inspired murals. The menu boasts an array of guacamole from traditional to lobster, shrimp and crab variations. Salads are among the more refreshing dishes for a hot day, such as the watermelon and tomatillo served with pumpkin seeds and baby greens. Tacos run three an order, with radish slaw, pickled red onion, queso fresco and green chili salsa. Looking for a snack to go with your margarita? There’s always Mexican street corn, served with a choice of three toppings: roasted garlic and chili, chipotle honey, or Buffalo-dipped corn with blue cheese. More info: 516-223-9600, eltoro28.com
A frozen margarita sits on the bar at El Toro 28 on the Nautical Mile in Freeport.
The walls of El Toro 28 on Freeport's Nautical Mile are painted with Mexicn-themed murals.