Making mozzarella... Pairing rum and chocolate... more Babalu

Cheesemonger Jessica Affato will show you how to pull mozzarella in a class at Northport’s Nest on Main.

Cheesemonger Jessica Affato will show you how to pull mozzarella in a class at Northport’s Nest on Main.

NOT YOUR MOMMA’S STRING  CHEESE: Once you’ve tasted fresh made mozzarella cheese, you won’t want to go back to store-bought. There’s no comparison. You can learn how to make fresh mozzarella in your own home with Jessica Affatato of Northport’s Harbor Cheese and Provisions. Affatato will teach a class in mozzarella making at Nest on Main in Northport on Oct. 4, 6:30-8:30 p.m. The beginners course will kick off with a tasting of different "pasta filata" styles then dive in to hands-on mozzarella making,. So roll up your sleeves and get ready for a hands-on cheese-making experience. There will also be a sampling of Italian appetizers and beverages served by Nest on Main. Fee is $55 per person; payable online at

FOR CHOCOLATE LOVERS: No, rum lovers! Well, one can love both. Do so at a rum and chocolate tasting event at The Whaling Museum & Education Center in Cold Spring Harbor on Thursday, Oct. 4, 6:30-8 p.m. Prof. Jenny Anderson of Stony Brook University will take you on a tasting journey, weaving a story of personalities, rum, chocolate and the sea. Must be 21 and over. Tickets: $20 in advance, $15 for members, and $35 at the door and include chocolate and rum punch tastings. Register online at

DINNER AND A SHOW: Just like the old days… diners will enjoy a three-course dinner at Nocello’s (843 Fort Salonga Road, Northport) while being serenaded by Anita Starlite and Tommy Lynn performing a musical tribute to Barbra Streisand and Neil Diamond. Dinner and the show is $49.95 per person, tax included. It’s Friday, Sept. 28, 7 p.m. Make reservations by calling 631-262-8565.

MORE BABALU: Chef Alan Gotay, a pro-boxer turned restaurateur, learned to cook in his mama’s kitchen. After his boxing run, which included bouts at The Paramount, Gotay turned to his other love, cooking. From a tiny kitchen at 286 New York Avenue in Huntington, Gotay cooks up Cuban classics and some Mediterranean-influenced originals to an almost equally small dining room. The best seat in the house? At the bar, right next to a window on the kitchen through which Gotay literally passes those creations to wait staff. With a few years under his belt, Gotay is getting ready to expand into recently vacated space next door. That means more room for  Dominoes night on Wednesdays, Ladies Night on Thursdays, and live music and dancing Fridays. Babalu’s open Tuesday through Sunday. Check out the specials and menus at