The weekend means it’s time to feast. Look to our picks from Rockville Centre to East Hampton.
From critic Melissa McCart
A makeover from its former life as a pizzeria, Verde Wine Bar and Ristorante in Deer Park is serving some compelling small plates and entrees from executive chef James Ahern. For appetizers, roasted clams ($13) with smoked pork belly delivered a sweet, salty and savory bite, while veal sweetbreads ($15) were the perfect texture. Among entrees, the pastas are crowd pleasers ($23-$27), while the rabbit leg ($26), admittedly not for everyone, is as classic a preparation as it gets, with fennel and a mushroom medley in a red wine reduction. The rumor is that it’s the chef’s favorite dish on the menu.
450 Commack Rd., Deer Park; 631-242-8902, eatdrinkverde.com
If you’re looking for a new place for dinner, here’s an unlikely spot: Flour Shoppe Cafe in Rockville Centre. Starting this week, owners Samantha Caltagirone and Madison Kaer have opted to extend hours to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 p.m. Saturday.
Chef John Maher — founding chef of EAT Gastropub in Oceanside — offers dishes such as the summertime clam chowder and grilled cheese special ($13), croque madame ($8) and the Crossfit salad ($11) with optional add-ons from avocado ($2) to turkey burger ($7).
Don’t forget about dessert, from a macaron to a peanut butter Fluff tart and a cappuccino made with Stumptown beans.
486 Sunrise Hwy., Rockville Centre; 516-536-2253, theflourshoppebakery.com
From critic Peter Gianotti
Coax the summer. Harbor Bistro is open for the season at its waterside perch in East Hampton. The New American restaurant has dependably fine food and is an ideal spot to catch the sunset. Notable dishes include pistachio-crusted swordfish, tandoori-spiced halibut, chimichurri-grilled shrimp tacos, jerk pork tenderloin, a mezze platter, and local oysters.
313 Three Mile Harbor Rd., East Hampton; 631-324-7300, harborbistro.net