At 6:45 p.m., spring begins – just in time for dinner. Here are four restaurants where you can enjoy the vernal equinox, plus dessert.
Arturo's in Floral Park has a signature appetizer: torta primavera, a tasty layering of crepes, vegetables, cheeses, and meats that's delectable year-round, but especially in spring. Continue with prosciutto-wrapped asparagus; penne primavera, with vegetables, in tomato sauce; chicken scarpariello; and warm zabaglione for two with vanilla ice cream and strawberries.
Cooperage Inn in Baiting Hollow is a warm, homey establishment that follows the calendar and the holidays with seasonal specials and pleasing decorations. It's fine for the whole family. Recommended: roasted rack of New Zealand lamb, "four season" meatloaf with roasted garlic-mashed potatoes, potato-and-onion crusted fluke, barbecued baby back ribs, and very good pies.
The Fifth Season has even more appeal during the warm-weather months from its perch opposite the harbor. Try the coconut, butternut squash and ginger soup; smoked Berkshire pork buns with carrot-and-cabbage slaw; the Kobe beef burger; and Meyer lemon cheesecake. (The Easter Sunday menu includes seared Colorado lamb chops and roasted spring vegetable pupusas.)
The Jolly Fisherman & Steak House has been bringing in the catch since 1957. The pondside landmark's staples include steamed lobsters, raw or fried Blue Point oysters, Dover sole meuniere, sauteed red snapper, shrimp and crabmeat cocktails, and banana cream or chocolate cream pie. In season, the restaurant offers shad and shad roe, stone crab claws, and Nantucket Bay scallops.
Arturo's 246-04 Jericho Tpke., Floral Park; 516-352-7418.
Cooperage Inn, 2218 Sound Ave., Baiting Hollow; 631-727-8994.
The Fifth Season, 34 E. Broadway, Port Jefferson; 631-477-8500.
The Jolly Fisherman & Steak House, 25 Main St., Roslyn; 516-621-0055.