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I’ve covered Sep’s Farm, Little Creek Oysters, and Lavender by the Bay, but I couldn’t wrap up my trip to the North Fork without sharing some photos of two of my favorite North Fork wineries, Bedell Cellars and Kontokosta Winery. I’ve visited both wineries before and was excited to have them on our press trip itinerary.

bedell cellars Our first winery stop was Bedell Cellars, which had its nicely air conditioned tasting room set up for us, a nice bit of relief from the heat outside. I love the Bedell Cellars building and grounds. More photos can be found on my last blog post about the winery.

Bedell Cellars

North Fork wine country

Bedell Cellars

We were a little behind schedule so took a quick few minutes to wander around inside before tasting. I knew I loved Bedell Cellars wines and was excited to taste the latest Taste Rosé blend which was as delightful as past rosé blends. That 55% Cab Franc makes it! I love a rosé of Cab Franc so much, and the North Fork grows some fantastic Cab Franc.

Bedell Cellars

Before we left, I snuck out to the winery porch for a quick photo. How stunning is this space? I could have sat here all day, but we had more North Fork to explore!

Bedell Cellars

Later in the afternoon, we rolled into Kontokosta Winery. The last time I visited Kontokosta it was pouring rain, so arriving with gorgeous blue skies and bright sunshine made for an entirely different experience. The winery building and interior was as beautiful as I remembered, and I was excited to see General Manager Polly again. This time we were also welcomed by Michael Kontokosta, one of the owners of the winery, who was incredibly warm and hospitable.

Kontokosta WineryNorth Fork vineyardKontokosta Winery Michael tasted us through a number of Kontokosta’s wines, and the Viognier and Cab Franc ended up being my favorites. Viognier is another grape that grows beautifully on Long Island. These two grapes really reflect the North Fork terroir. When I open a bottle at home, it’s like I am right back there!’

Kontokosta Winery   Kontokosta Wine

bluff bar Kontokosta With a glass of the Cab Franc (oh so peppery, with notes of earth and dry leaves and dark berries, amazing) in hand, I raced down to the bluff to soak up some sun and snap photos while I sipped my wine. The wine at Kontokosta is outstanding; the views are unforgettable. For someone who loves the sea and wine as much as I do, this place is pretty much heaven.

Kontokosta Winery

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Thank you to Kontokosta and Bedell for hosting our group! I can’t wait for my next trip to the North Fork.

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Tags: Long Island wine, Long Island wine country, North Fork, press trip, Travel, travel blogger, wine, wine tasting, Wine Wednesday

I wish you could smell it, but for now, photos will have to do. Part of my Cross Sound Ferry trip to the North Fork of Long Island was a visit to the absolutely heavenly Lavender by the Bay. I have always dreamed of visiting a lavender farm, and this lived up to every expectation I had.

Lavender by the Bay grows both English and French lavender and allows visitors to wander along paths in their gorgeous fields. The farm is located near many great North Fork wineries, and across from Sep’s, a farm you also must visit.

Lavender by the Bay

Lavender by the Bay

Lavender by the Bay lavender North Fork of Long Island

lavender fields in Long Island lavender lavender fields lavender lavender drying lavender In addition to the outdoor beauty at Lavender by the Bay, an adorable farm store welcomes visitors and features all sorts of items including dried lavender, baking lavender, soaps, lavender honey (delicious in a gin and tonic), and more.

We were warmly welcomed by the farm’s owner and received our own lavender bunches, complete with instructions for drying, to bring home. Thanks to this excursion, I am typing this blog post surrounded by the beautiful smell of dried lavender, which reminds me completely of my nana. It’s such a good memory to have!

If you are visiting the North Fork of Long Island, definitely add a visit to Lavender by the Bay to your itinerary. Even if the lavender isn’t in bloom, all it leaves behind will still be worth visiting for.

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Tags: lavender, Long Island, Long Island wine country, North Fork, Travel, travel blog, travel blogger, Travel Tuesday

Tucked into the Greenport, NY waterfront down Bootleg Alley  is the cutest little oyster shack you’ve ever seen. Little Creek Oysters was part of the incredible itinerary on my North Fork press trip a couple of weeks ago, which started on the Cross Sound Ferry and with a trip to Sep’s Farmstand. Greenport is an adorable seaside town, perfect for  getaway, with tons of shopping and eating, in addition to plenty of lovely waterfront for wandering. You’ll want to make Little Creek Oysters part of your Greenport itinerary too.

Little Creek Oysters

The building itself has a fun history. It began as the wheelhouse of a whaling ship that was eventually cut off and brought ashore in 1880. After spending time as a gathering place for the men who worked the sea, it became a bait and tackle shop and is now home to Little Creek Oysters, who have kept the iconic bait and tackle sign.

Little Creek Oysters

The oyster shack features eclectic nautical decor in a bright, cozy little space with the influence of oysters on just about everything.

Little Creek Oysters

There’s plenty of gift shopping to be done; our group left with all sorts of new items, including oyster shucking platforms, shucking knives and gloves, and my favorite, branded little glasses, perfect for a cold beer on a hot summer day.

joy

Little Creek Oysters

Little Creek Oyster While we browsed and learned all about Little Creek Oysters from co-owner Rosalie Rung, oystermen dropped off fresh deliveries off local oysters. Josh Clauss hauled in bags of Harvest Moon oysters; it doesn’t get much fresher than that!        

Greenport oysters  

Long Island wine

Rosalie had set a beautiful table for us, complete with wine from local winery Bedell Cellars, perfectly iced on the very hot day.

oyster menu The table setting also including Holy Schmitt’s horseradish from Riverhead, NY and small batch A & B pepper sauce, which we learned, were both delicious for topping oysters.

oyster accompaniments

Cold glasses of wine were poured, and we tucked into steaming bowls of homemade clam chowder, one of the offerings on the simple menu at Little Creek Oysters.

Bedell Cellars wine  

Rich with plump local clams and in a creamy but light broth, the chowder hit the spot. Rosalie explained that, unlike the chowder we might be used to in New England, this was made without flour, so the broth is a little thinner. It was the perfect start to a sea-kissed afternoon of oyster shucking.

clam chowderConfession: I had never shucked an oyster before. My husband has done it for us a few times at home, but we mostly go out for oysters. I was a little nervous but also excited to have Rosalie’s expertise as we learned together, some of us novices and others seasoned shuckers.

oyster shucking These wooden platforms definitely helped to stabilize the oyster and to provide leverage for prying open the shell. We dug into buckets of iced oysters from Peconic Bay, donning our shucking gloves and knives for a delicious lesson.

oysters  

Little Creek Oysters Shucking oysters seems simpler than it is, at least for me. At first I had some trouble getting the knife into the hinge, but I got the hang of it and proudly opened about six oysters, which I slurped down with horseradish or hot sauce.

oysters I’m a lover of small, briny oysters, and these definitely fit the bill. They were delightfully salty, like kissing the sea, and the act of shucking made for a ton of laughs and camaraderie in the group.

oyster

shucking oysters

Empty bottles of wine and empty oyster shells soon graced the table, making for a fun contrast to the way it looked on our arrival; clearly we went to work on things!

Little Creek oyster is the perfect spot for getting together with a group of friends, a bucket of oysters, and some Long Island beer or wine for a tasty day by the sea. There’s no need to be intimidated; Rosalie and her husband Ian are happy to help you learn to shuck, a skill that is a gift that keeps on giving. Oyster and wine lovers definitely don’t want to miss out on this exceptional coastal living experience.

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Tags: coastal living, Long Island. food, North Fork, oysters, Travel, travel blog

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