Into every life a little rain must fall. Or onto some Memorial Day weekends. Or … something like that. While the weather this weekend may not be barbecue-friendly, rainy days have their own ambience, and call for warming the soul with a bowl of ramen, maybe, or steamers and beer while trying to peep the Bethpage Air Show across Freeport’s Woodcleft Canal. This long weekend honors those who gave their lives in service, so who can complain about a little rain? Embrace spring’s last stand with some mellow fun and know that brighter, and much hotter, days lie ahead.
Slurp Ramen (109 W. Broadway, Port Jefferson): One of the first ramen shops on Long Island is still arguably the best, and comes with a view of Port Jefferson Harbor. As was the way during COVID, this cozy, casual spot added a cute outdoor garden — but whether inside or outside, the signature bowl to try is the rich tonkotsu ramen, which starts with a milky pork broth and noodles layered with chashu pork (marinated, thin-sliced pork belly), a soft-boiled egg, fresh ginger and scallions. The "slurp smooth" pairs a chicken-based shoyu broth with crunchy Japanese-style fried chicken — and there’s a miso-based vegan option, too. $. More info: 631-509-1166 slurpusa.com
Jeremy’s Ale House (239 Woodcleft Ave., Freeport): Some think you can see the air show acrobatics from Freeport’s Nautical Mile, and while there are plenty of splashy bars to choose from, Jeremy’s harbors the Mile’s heart and soul. Order at the bar, which has its own weathered, unpretentious vibe — then decamp to the covered deck, which overlooks the canal and is a lazy place to sip pints. The seafood here is simply prepared and across-the board-excellent — warming clam chowder, fried scallops, steamers — and you can nibble with the quiet satisfaction that you’ve paid a fair price, not always the case along the Mile. $-$$. More info: 516-623-0204.
Mamajuana Café (555 E. Jericho Tpke., Huntington Station): The enormous covered patio at this new South Huntington spot is as fresh as it gets (it was completed earlier this month) and the food, drawn from across the Caribbean, central and South America and even Spain, can warm you from head to toe: Empanadas, grilled octopus with chimichurri, paella, "sushi Latino" (think chicken or shrimp tempura rolled with various cheeses) or puerquito al horno, slow-roasted pork shoulder with piquant garlic-herb mojo, arroz moro and fried plantains. I’m hungry just writing about it. The boozy punch is spiked with Jack Daniel's, the mules use Brugal Rum from the Dominican Republic and the dining room, cast in fiery tones, is as festive as it gets. $$$. More info: 631-923-3686 mamajuanacafe-huntington.com