Sometimes, you just need a little color on your plate. Never do I crave the colors of the rainbow more than in winter, when the weather outside is frightful (and, accordingly, the colors are sadly muted). Even though it may still be the season of little, the restaurants of the North Fork are still serving up plenty of incredible cuisine. Best of all, many of the dishes coming out of the Fork’s best restaurants are popping with color. And that will help you put a little pep in your step until the spring greens come in. Here are some of the Fork’s best representations when it comes to color-centric plates (please note that not all dishes are always available — but you’re bound to find the color you need in your life on any of these menus). You’ll want to dig in as soon as possible.
At Greenport’s The Halyard, chef Stephan Bogardus shows a sure hand with vegetables. His well-curated appetizer menu is also an ode to color. Take, for instance, the Thai-style sweet potato salad, in which orange potatoes are served with green cilantro, bright red chili oil, and crunchy yellow peanuts. And don’t leave without sampling the vibrant red autumn beet salad, studded with gold pear and snow-white cheese.
Robbie Beaver’s Frisky Oyster, also in Greenport, wraps you in color from the moment you arrive (the restaurant’s signature interior is deep red). The tuna tartare, on the other hand, is a deep pink, and it’s matched by a perfectly green avocado mousse that will have you digging for seconds. When available, the vibrant heirloom tomato fondue, served with grilled crostini, is also worth trying. And the restaurant itself, with its deep red interior, is the ultimate expression of color.
At Noah’s in Greenport, the persimmon and pomegranate salad, topped with Catapano Farms goat cheese, mint green frisee, and deep green watercress, is the pop of red and orange you didn’t know you needed. It doesn’t hurt that this dish is also an addictive blend of textures and flavors. Noah’s updates their menu regularly, so if this isn’t available, stop in for any manner of colorful plates.
Not to be outdone, Lucharitos, which has outposts in Aquebogue, Greenport, and Mattituck, serves bright and playful Mexican cuisine that embraces the hues of the rainbow. Tuck into the veggie grande nachos for an example of color at work: onions, peppers, tomatoes, zucchini, broccoli, beans, jalapeños, guacamole, and salsa fresca play to every color in the wheel.
Finally, with chef Matty Boudreau newly at the helm at Green Hill Kitchen in Greenport, great barbecue is on display. Not all barbecue comes in shades of red and brown, though. Chef Boudreau’s spice-rubbed salmon is deep pink, and is accented by white beans and deep green collards. On the side? A sunny yellow grilled lemon, perfect for a little more color and flavor.
No matter your craving, the restaurants of the North Fork can deliver colorful, flavorful food this season. Don’t let the season force you into a life of whites, browns, and beiges. Find your favorite dish and check these spots out. There’s no better time for eating through the color wheel, after all.