Back To School And
Out To Lunch
By The Foodies/ firstname.lastname@example.org
As we gear up to get the kids back to school, we relish the
free time were going to have, but know that
the reality is that with kids in school, life is usually more
hectic and overscheduled than during the summer you
know, the time when it seemed that you couldnt get the
kids out of your hair for five minutes.
Yes, with Labor Day comes school, but it also means fitting
your days household responsibilities into a few short
hours that the kids are out of the house. When trying to figure
out how to squeeze everything you need to do into those few
child-free hours, who has time to go out to lunch?
Well, if you have 30 minutes, these places can provide a quick
bite with friends before you have to rush off and move on
to the next task.
At American Roadside Burgers (337 New York Avenue, Huntington.
631-935-0300, www.americanroadsideburgers.com), the moment
you walk in you see a short menu; burgers, maybe doubled or
even quadrupled, hot dogs, chicken, grilled cheese, onion
rings and milkshakes make up the menu. They even offer Bosco
chocolate soda at the self-serve fountain.
You want a quick bite not far from home? Order a Double Cheeseburger
($5.42) Roadside Onion Rings ($2.66) and a Vanilla Milk Shake
($2.91). Find a seat if you can, and wait for your order to
be made just two or three minutes. You will soon be
brought a tray with your burger wrapped in foil, the grease
on the onion rings glistening, the thick shake bringing back
fond memories of your own time in the back of the family station
And dont worry about the calories the extra hustle
during the school year helps you burn them off.
El Picacho Catracho (1026 New York Avenue, Huntington Station,
631-683-4224), which translates directly into Honduran Mountain,
has been open since the early spring, and this flavorful Honduran
restaurant creates new dishes that have breathed a new life
into the stretch of Huntington Station, opening its doors
to a wider audience.
On our last visit, we started with fresh Nachos con frijoles
fritos, queso mantequilla ($3); the chips were clearly homemade
with a perfectly-sized side of refried beans topped with sour
cream. Just as we finished the last of them, came the main
dish of the day Pollo frito con tajadas de Banano verde,
repollo y chimol salsa casera ($9). Essentially, the dish
is fried chicken with sliced green plantains, cabbage, a spiced
relish and the delectable house sauce that adds fruit and
a kick to the dishes it accompanies. The presentation was
The plantains, known to typically be firm and often served
fried, were softened by a sauté that brought out the
natural fruitiness and took away some of the green bananas
bitter flavor. The shredded cabbage slaw, with bits of purple
radish popping out from the green and white, had a delightful
sour tang. The chicken was meaty, with a crisp batter that
could withstand the drenching it got from the slaw below and
the sauce on top.
Add to all that the salsa, and youve got a typical Honduran
dish a wide range of flavors and textures that incorporate
protein, vegetable and starch all on one plate while having
a delightful combination of colors and dancing on different
taste buds all at once.
So stop in for some soup, some Spanish soap operas or simply
some of the most authentic Honduran food we have tasted in
some time at El Picacho and enjoy.
It may not look like much, perched near the top of the downtown
Huntington area, shielded by an otherwise bland façade,
but the Golden Dolphin (365 West Main St., Huntington, 631-351-9680)
is a true diner of old, with the massive laminated menu, the
friendly wait staff who call you Hon and Doll,
and the harried cook peeking out to see just how crowded the
For those who consider their taste buds to be too refined
for a diner, think again. Golden Dolphins pot roast
is divine, the salads are crisp and fresh with plenty to choose
from and the breakfast, burgers and sandwiches are all comfort
food done to a tee.
But dont just take it from us take it upon yourself
to try one of the paninis. The latest in diner food, paninis
are making their way to the lunch counter and booths all across
diner-land, and Golden Dolphin is no slouch in this department.
You can try the Pilgrim, with turkey, tomato, grilled onions
and Swiss cheese, or perhaps the Goodfellas, with prosciutto,
salami, roasted red peppers, tomatoes and mozzarella, or my
favorite, the All American, with roast beef, grilled onion
and your choice of American or cheddar cheese.
At $9.95 each (that includes fries, cole slaw and a pickle),
and with the massive size of the platter, these are not only
a filling lunch, but a great deal, to boot.
Despite having a pair of singing jalapenos in sombreros for
a logo and a wildly colorful interior, theres nothing
crazy about Burrito Loco (Burrito Loco, Commack, 631-462-3030).
Located in a storefront in the Meat Farms shopping center
on Commack Road, Burrito Loco is about freshly prepared Mexican
specialties served in a jiffy.
The place has become a favorite among locals for value-priced
meals that dont skimp on flavor or freshness. If theres
a drawback, its that everything is served in plastic
Burrito Locos Mexi-Chili ($4.59), a rich and tomato-ey
chili with ground beef and beans, has a spicy bite but isnt
too fiery, which is a good thing considering that on our recent
visit they left off the sour cream. Served with corn chips,
its almost enough for a light meal. The Black Bean Soup
is a flavorful mix of black beans, onions, avocado and peppers
with hints of garlic and lime.
For the main meal, portions are generous. Enchiladas ($7.99)
feature marinated steak or chicken with onions in a green
tomatillo sauce wrapped in soft flour tortillas and topped
with melted Jack cheese.
Taco Pescadero ($2.59), Locos version of the tasty fish
taco thats only a surprise if you havent tried
one before, is a flavorful one with breaded Snapper, tomato
salsa and cabbage topped with a slightly sweet dressing in
a soft corn tortilla.
All dishes are prepared before your eyes in Burrito Locos
open-air kitchen, and service is generally fast. With only
a handful of tables and a half-dozen stools at a windowfront
counter, much of the eaterys business is take out. And
judging from the traffic during our recent visits, the locals
have discovered, theres nothing crazy about value-priced,
Just a few steps off Main Street, Joannes Gourmet Pizza
(11 New Street Huntington village, 631-673-2040, www.JoannesGourmetPizza.com)
offers a whole new world of pizza creations.
The pizzeria, which opened just last September, features over
30 varieties of gourmet pizzas prepared from scratch with
the freshest ingredients of the highest quality. They deliver
even in Lloyd Neck and provide a unique experience
for everyone from the youngest pizza aficionados to the oldest
We started with a platter showcasing the Honey Dijon Chicken,
Buffalo Chicken, Margarita, Shrimp Scampi, Regular and Whole
The Honey Dijon was sweet and satisfying with large chunks
of white chicken breast marinated in Joannes famous
Dijon sauce, while the Buffalo Chicken was hot and spicy and
the large white chicken breast chunks were topped with Joannes
homemade buffalo wing sauce. The Margarita, topped with fresh
mozzarella, basil and a plum tomato sauce, was fresh and tasty,
and the Shrimp Scampi, loaded with baby shrimps and mozzarella
cheese, offered an unusual, yet pleasing, alternative. The
regular slice was just as good as the specialties, with a
thick layer of cheese and a crisp crust, while the Whole Wheat
provided a healthier option for the nutrition-conscious.
With cheese-less and vegetarian pizza options, salads, soups,
heroes, pasta dishes and entrées such as Chicken Cutlet
Parmigiana ($12.95), Joannes really offers something
for everyone. Expand your pizza horizons with Joannes
different varieties and learn to love pizza all over again
in a whole new way.