Pumpernickel’s: A Tradition For Decades
By Pete & Rosie/
Dinner at Pumpernickel’s Restaurant
is a tradition for generations of residents from Northport
and surrounding areas. Standing at the crossroads of Main
Street and Route 25A, Artie Glad’s German-American restaurant
is a landmark in more ways than one.
In the simplest sense, the restaurant’s location is
at the entrance to Northport’s Main Street. It’s
both on the way, and on the way home. But it’s in another
sense that Pumpernickel’s truly enjoys landmark status.
As a tradition among generations of residents, it’s
a place where families gather to celebrate occasions like
birthdays and anniversaries; or to mark life’s important
events like graduations and new jobs. It’s the kind
of place a guy might take his girl to pop the question. In
short, it’s a warm and comfortable home away from home.
The main floor of the two-story restaurant is dominated by
the main dining room and a bar area with a handful of tables
and booths, all lit with the warm glow from stained glass
lighting fixtures. The bar area has the same peach painted
walls and blond oak accents as the main dining room, but the
proximity of the game-night bar crowds makes it more casual.
More dining rooms upstairs are used for parties and large
Waitresses in traditional German dress are friendly and many
have been with the restaurant for years. Lisa, our server
on a recent Sunday visit, is a 12-year veteran who said many
staff members have been there longer.
The food at Pumpernickel’s is German and it’s
with the traditional dishes – sauerbrauten, wurst platters,
pork chops and veal – that the kitchen excels. But it’s
not all meat and potatoes at Pumpernickels. Given the ready
availability of the finest fresh seafood, fish and shellfish
entrees feature prominently on the menu, particularly as specials.
Dinner at Pumpernickel’s opens with a bread basket that
includes tasty onion roll, and traditional German flat breads,
but go right for the pumpernickel. Not surprisingly, it’s
the best in the basket.
The wine list features nearly three dozen varietals, including
a wide selection of German wines. If you know them, order
away; otherwise ask for suggestions, or try the house Reisling.
Chef Louis Glad – Artie’s brother – and
the kitchen staff prepare an extensive menu that ranges from
hearty homemade soups, to sandwiches and German specialties.
Onion Soup ($$6.95), dripping with cheese, is a favorite,
but chowders are a specialty. Manhattan Clam Chowder ($5.95)
is thick with clams. On the night we visited, Seafood Chowder
($5.95) was recommended from the specials menu. Creamy and
flavorful with chunks of fish, clams, scallops and potato,
it was almost a meal in itself.
Appetizers include the popular Clams Casino ($8.95), Oregonata
($8.95 on the specials menu), and Stuffed Mushroom Caps ($7.95).
German traditionalists might go for the Herring in sour cream
and onions ($7.95). We were also tempted by the Berry Salad
($12.95), a mix of fresh berries and nuts with Gorgonzola
cheese over mixed greens.
Deciding on an entrée is tough. We instinctively steered
toward the chops and roasts, but the menu is extensive enough
to require more than a casual look before deciding. Roast
Loin of Pork with sauerkraut ($18.95); traditional Weiner
Schnitzel, a sautéed breaded veal cutlet ($18.95) all
beckoned. So too did the Wurst platter, a choice Knockwurst,
Bratwurst or Weisswurst (any two, $16.95).
We went with some traditional offerings. Traditional slow
roasted German Sauerbraten ($18.95) was fork tender in a rich,
dark gravy with potato dumplings and red cabbage on the side.
From the specials menu, we also ordered the Pork Chops Stuffed
with Apple Cranberry Stuffing ($19.95). Two chops were generously
stuffed with a delicious dressing and served with a generous
pile of mashed potatoes that would be worth ordering alone.
AS we said, Pumpernickel’s menu isn’t limited
to German specialties. Our Sunday visit had a half-dozen fish
specialties on the specials menu, including Idaho Rainbow
Trout ($20.95), Broiled Salmon ($20.95) and Crabmeat Stuffed
Also calling from the specials board were Veal Piccota with
artichoke hearts and capers and a white wine and lemon sauce
($20.95), and the Prime Rib ($25.95).
Portions are generous at Pumpernickel’s, but desserts
are as ably prepared as the entrees, The Apple Struedel ($5.95)
is a must. Oven warmed and topped with a scoop of vanilla
ice cream, it brought a warm experience to a flavorful end.
It was a flavor so worth repeating that not sure that we’ll
ever get around to the other desserts on the menu when we
640 Main Street
Price Range: Moderate
Lunch: Mon-Thur 11:30-3,
Fri & Sat 11:30–4
Dinner: Mon-Thur 5 – 10,
Fri & Sat 4 – 11
Sunday 1 – 9