It may feel like the heart of spring and summer are still a long way off, but some of the chefs on the North Fork are dedicated to using local produce—even when times are lean. In April, gems like asparagus start to appear at the market, but there is more to see in the cooler months than just that green favorite. Luckily, the North Fork is full of intrepid professionals who are making the most out of the market, regardless of the season. Here’s what some of the North Fork’s best chefs and restaurants are doing when it comes to fresh produce.
Chef Stephan Bogardus, a North Fork native, has always placed a premium on local ingredients. His menus have long promoted the freshest Long Island foods in sight. Even in the middle of the coldest months, that ethos is no different. His menu boasts local vegetables as companions to proteins and even highlights KK The Farm’s tender greens, with an appetizer of Ira’s Biodynamic greens with radish, chive, and Sherry-shallot vinaigrette. thehalyardgreenport.com
Chef Noah Schwartz’s Greenport restaurant might as well be a love letter to the local producers and growers of the North Fork. His menu is constantly changing, depending on the season, but a recent cold weather dish of roasted local beets with red grapefruit, avocado, and spiced cashews highlighted the area’s produce, as did a dish of North Fork Brussels sprouts with sage, apple, and Andouille sausage. The icing on the produce-driven cake? Maybe the North Fork mushroom risotto with local pea greens. chefnoahs.com
The Frisky Oyster
Like Stephan Bogardus, chef-owner Robby Beaver is also using KK The Farm’s Biodynamic greens on his menu (they were featured in a recent dish with roasted butternut squash, pepitas, and hemp hearts). Another standout item from a recent menu, with locally grown finds, was a NoFo apple-rutabaga soup, served with a cardamom foam. The regularly changing Frisky Oyster menu is always full of local ingredients.
The North Fork Table & Inn
John Fraser’s Southold success, The North Fork Table & Inn, serves dinner on weekends. His food is locally driven (he, too, is a dedicated patron of KK the Farm, featuring the flower petals on his menu). A rotating side dish of a “farmstand sauté regularly features whatever happens to be in season at the moment, and a accompaniment to the mixed grill is simply billed as a “winter bouquet.”
When they aren’t tending to their Peconic Escargot, Katelyn and Taylor Knapp run this quietly impressive pop-up, which splits its time between the Lin Beach House and Bruce and Son. Regardless of the incarnation (the pop-up hosts a poultry series, in addition to its “original flavor” option), the tasting menu is always full of local produce-laden dishes. Recently, this meant wood-roasted apples with sesame and yogurt and a chilled tea of Concord grape and bayberry. Pop-ups are held a few times a month, with the upcoming schedule available online. pawpawpopup.com