Fall fun doesn't have to mean a trip out east. Farm stands, wineries, breweries and more offer the tastes and sights of the season while staying central on Long Island. Here are some spots west of Riverhead to try this fall.
SEASONAL EVENTS, THINGS TO DO
JERICHO CIDER MILL
The Jericho Cider Mill offers a taste of fall fun right off Oyster Bay Road. The venue will turn its parking lot (starting Sept. 15) into a fun spot with tents featuring free games for kids and photo opportunities in front of apples among other décor. The venue’s celebrated cider donuts will return for purchase, and will be joined by new things such as “Crumb Cookies” and a line of breads served in large tins (flavors include apple, apple blueberry, apple raspberry, apple raisin, banana, chocolate banana, cinnamon and pumpkin.
INFO 213 Jericho Oyster Bay Rd., Jericho; 516-433-3360, jerichocider.com
Look for Oktoberfest-inspired events weekends from Sept. 30 through Oct. 15, which will see German oompah bands live in its Biergarten plus authentic German dancing and a special menu and beers ($5 admission fee). Upon the end of Oktoberfest, the Nassau County Feis and Irish Festival, which celebrates Irish culture with food, music, dancing and a Catholic mass takes place on Oct. 16 ($10 cover; kids under 12 in free). Other slated gatherings include live music on Thanksgiving Eve ($5) and the venue’s traditional German "Christkindl Markt" Christmas fair (which will include a visit from Santa) is scheduled for Nov. 25-26.
INFO 1132 Hempstead Tpke., Franklin Square; 516-354-3131, parkrestaurant.com
This waterfront bar is kicking off its fall beverage program by mid-September, which will offer butter beer and hot spiked cider, as well as other warm cocktails plus Oktoberfest and pumpkin beers. Guests can also order up fall-themed deserts and everything can be enjoyed around the venue’s firepits. The annual Cooper Bluff Oktoberfest then returns Oct. 1, (starting at noon) featuring live music, Bavarian dancers and German food plus drinks like beer, cocktails and slushies. The spot will be hosting its annual IrishFest on Oct. 8, with Brooklyn Bards (2-6 p.m.), and performances from Irish step dancers during the day; corned beef sandwiches, Guinness beer on tap and other fare will be available to purchase. Oct. 15-16 marks the return of Oyster Fest to Oyster Bay, and the spot will be hosting live music plus costumed characters for meet-and-greet with kids. A Cinco de Mayo-themed gathering is slated for Oct. 23 (with Mexican foods and a live mariachi band) before closing for the year on Nov. 1.
INFO 5 Bay Ave., Oyster Bay; 516-296-8485, cooperbluff.com
A small oasis in the middle of a shopping center in Nassau County, this venue has a lush beer garden set under a lofty pergola that makes one forget that the street is footsteps away; the inside space is also available for dining and socializing (as the tavern’s name suggests). October will be a monthlong opportunity to drink German beers on tap to mark Oktoberfest.
INFO 1964 Hempstead Tpke., East Meadow; 516-750-5338, gardensocialli.com
THE NUTTY IRISHMAN
This restaurant and tavern has long been a source for nightlife, and the fall will see bands playing at 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. A Halloween pop-up event is also in the works for the last two weeks of October, as is an Oktoberfest and a Halloween-themed Bingo Brunch with trivia on Oct. 30.
INFO 323 Main St., Farmingdale; 516-293-9700, thenuttyirishman.com
FARMS AND FARM STANDS TO EXPLORE
ALBERT H. SCHMITT FAMILY FARMS
Fall at this farm will once again feature hayrides, pumpkin picking and "animal train" rides daily starting mid-September (until the start of November), plus a pumpkin patch that now has a “Pumpkin House” — a structure lined with the orange squash from which it takes its name — in which there are several Instagrammable angles; admission is free while the pumpkin patch is $5 to enter. Guests can purchase hot apple cider, homegrown roasted corn, snickerdoodle breads, fresh baked pies and the farm’s signature apple cider doughnuts — and for 2022, the farm has also added Apple Pie Moscow Mule mocktails — while planters, cornstalks, hay bales and fall décor plus flowers grown in the venue’s greenhouses will also be available.
INFO 6 Bagatelle Rd., Dix Hills; 631-549-3276, schmittsfamilyfarms.com
CROSSROADS FARM AT GROSSMAN’S
About the size of a neighborhood block, this nonprofit suburban pasture is a certified organic farm that produces flowers and seasonal fruits and veggies — such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, pumpkins, winter squash, potatoes, apples, Asian pears and more — as well as produce sourced from other local farmers and vendors. The spot also has an event calendar that includes “Farm-to-table Benefit” (Sept. 10) and its “Square Dance Fundraiser” (Oct. 22), plus a farmers market on Saturdays, its “Funday Sunday” gatherings and “Sunshine Days,” an educational program intended for kids ages 4-6. The farm will also feature a pumpkin patch come October before selling Christmas trees and other holiday décor starting after Thanksgiving.
INFO 480 Hempstead Ave., Malverne; 516-881-7900, xroadsfarmliny.com
WHITE POST FARMS
Autumn fun begins again at this animal farm with its 31st annual fall festival kicking off Sept. 24, which will then continue every weekend (and Columbus Day) until Oct. 30. This year will see the opening of the farm’s new “Giraffe Encounter Exhibit,” in addition to the full animal farm (including the bird aviary), and guests can take hayrides, play in hay, pick pumpkins, feed animals, take train rides and pony rides and check out live entertainment. The venue’s Taco Shack and BBQ Smokehouse will have food for purchase, while other edibles include roasted corn and apple cider donuts; tickets will be sold at the entrance, payable via cash or credit.
INFO 250 Old Country Rd., Melville; 631-351-9373, whitepostfarms.net
Well-known for its cheddar-buttermilk biscuits (featured in Oprah's Favorite Things holiday roundup), the facility is welcoming a pair of new sheep and six bunnies to its residential roster. Classes for guests of all ages are in the works for the fall, as are camps for kids — and customers can also look forward to a fresh collection of ice pops that come in flavors such as coconut, strawberry basil and blueberry cheesecake. Other food items to try include lobster rolls on weekends and hot apple cider when things start getting cooler, and customers can also look forward to pumpkins growing in the garden come the fall.
INFO 309 W Pulaski Rd., Huntington; 631-423-4400, kerbersfarm.com
SIP WINE AT A VINEYARD, ENJOY A BEER AT A BREWERY
This winery north of Stony Brook is set to stay open all year, and will host live music Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Look for its annual Halloween party on Oct. 29, followed by a fall music festival Nov. 5 where guests can purchase wine, hot apple cider and food including apple cider donuts; November will also see trivia nights arrive on Fridays at 8 p.m.
INFO 169 Harbor Rd., Head of the Harbor; 631-291-9900, harmonyvineyards.com
DEL VINO VINEYARDS
The fall is an excellent time to visit this family-friendly winery, as its scenic grounds change with the season. Look for a Halloween party on Oct. 30 and a new vintage to join the menu.
INFO 29 Norwood Rd., Northport; 844-335-8466, delvinovineyards.com
Tucked behind the Meadow Croft estate, this hidden winery will be busy weekends this autumn, with open hours of 1 to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Cheese boxes are a new edition to the list of things to try, and look for the release of its 2020 cabernet sauvignon come the fall, which will join its merlot, Chardonnay, Rosé, and South Bay Breeze Blush.
INFO 299 Middle Rd., Sayville; 631-589-0027, loughlinvineyardny.com
GREAT SOUTH BAY BREWERY
Salute the beginning of fall with a pumpkin brew at the Great South Bay Brewery, as its Pumpkin Ale is already brewing for the season. Check out the Friday evening free concert series that takes place on the brewery’s recently renovated back lawn plus other opportunities for live music Fridays through Sundays. Bingo takes place Wednesday nights, trivia goes down Thursdays; there’s cornhole and volleyball leagues that play Mondays and Thursdays as well. Look out Oct. 1 for a ticketed “Moonlight Market” event that will host more than 100 vendors plus food trucks and live entertainment, then come back Oct. 28 for the annual Halloween costume soiree. Those seeking a more private experience can also now rent the venue’s indoor VIP room or outdoor cabana and receive "Keg and Wine Service," a take on bottle service that instead can involve the rental of a sixtel keg or NYS-based wine.
INFO 25 Drexel Dr., Bay Shore; 631-392-8472, greatsouthbaybrewery.com
BRIGHT EYE BEER CO.
This Long Beach brewery's “Fright Eye Fest” is set to return by mid-October, a fall bash that is focused on beer releases; look for the company to put out batches of its Octoberfest beer, as well as a pumpkin offering and a “wet hop” (made with recently harvested hops) brew. The spot is also walking distance from the LIRR, should you choose to take the train.
INFO 50 W. Park Ave., Long Beach; 516-543-5736, brighteyebeerco.com
SIX HARBORS BREWING COMPANY
This Huntington Village brew spot will be rolling out its Oktoberfest Beer list by Oct. 1.; look for four styles of pumpkin beers (a porter, a lager, a black lager and a dark doppelback) and a quarter of German beers (a dark wheat beer, a doppelback, a Helles lager and “Buddy's German Kolsch”). Autumn events will include trivia nights and musical bingo plus special occasions such as an Oktoberfest celebration (Oct. 6), a jack-o'-lantern carving event (Oct. 12), its “Halloween Dog Party and Parade” (Oct. 30) and a ticketed comedy night (Nov. 3).
INFO 243 New York Ave., Huntington; 631-470-1560, sixharborsbrewingcompany.com
SOUTH SHORE CRAFT BREWERY
October will be a busy month at this beer spot with the return of its annual ticketed “Zactoberfest” Zac Brown Band tribute show ($20; eventbrite.com) on Oct. 15, plus live music every Friday and Saturday night. The fall will also see special releases including “Pumpkin Time” (a spiced imperial pumpkin ale), “ShoreToberfest” (German style-Marzen), “Lederfest” a Festbier lager and “Jack got Toasted” (a marshmallow porter). Look for four very-limited edition barrel-aged beers: Pumpkin Time in a cinnamon whisky barrel, a Russian imperial stout in a whiskey barrel, its “Gingerbread Amber Ale” in a cherry brandy barrel and a barley wine ale in a rye whiskey barrel.
INFO 3505 Hampton Rd., Oceanside; 516-388-6685, southshorecraftbrewery.com
This Port Jefferson Station spot is going to have lots of seasonal suds out for the fall, including its "Pumpkin Out" malt-forward ale (served with or without a cinnamon or sugar rim) and the "Crisp-Bee Apple Pie" (hard cider made with honey-crisp apples and cinnamon) during the first week of September and its "Jacked Up'D" coffee pumpkin spice beer come the last week of the month. Look for the return of the Po'boy costume-required Halloween bash on Oct. 29 and a Thanksgiving Eve soiree.
INFO 200 Wilson St., Port Jefferson Station; 631-828-1131, poboybrewery.com
BLUE POINT BREWING COMPANY
Guests can look forward to the continuation of free live music Thursdays through Sundays, and “Toasted Tuesdays” happen each week in the beer garden, featuring DJs, art and vendors. August will see releases such as a peach half-and-half sour imperial IPA and the return of its “Coffee Big Mother Pumpkin” brew. Look in September for an “Apple Crumb Pie Sour” offering, followed by “Tessellations” (an imperial IPA made with Chardonnay juice) by the start of October. The annual Cask Ales Festival is already set for Nov. 5 — which all leads into 2023, which will be a celebratory year as it marks the business’s 25th anniversary.
INFO 225 W. Main St., Patchogue; 631-627-8292, bluepointbrewing.com
OYSTER BAY BREWING CO.
A visit to this tap room in Historic Oyster Bay, well-known for its signature Islanders-inspired "Barn Rocker" ale, will be releasing its pumpkin ale come late August-early September, then a yearlong barrel-aged beer in November — but as 2022 is also the fiftieth anniversary of the NHL Isles, guests can look forward to the arrival of some commemorative beers starting in October and throughout the season.
INFO 36 Audrey Ave., Oyster Bay; 516-802-5546, oysterbaybrewing.com