Restaurant Review : Best Local Comfort Food

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Joanna Adduci is a Northport resident, 
currently working as a Marketing & Social Media Specialist. She has a B.S. in Journalism from St. John's University and is active within her community as a writer and mentor. Joanna can be reached by email at LISAVORYEATS@gmail.com. 

    The holidays are coming, and it’s quickly becoming the best time of the year. While I am partial to the fall season, I am sure that my summer-enthusiasts will equally enjoy the approaching comfort food, cozy sweater weather and multitude of autumn activities. November is the perfect time of year to celebrate the harvest season! My personal favorite includes recipe testing: soups, stews, casseroles and pasta dishes. When I’m not recipe testing, I also enjoy seeking out the best local comfort food on Long Island. 
     One of my favorite fall meals is pot roast. It’s comforting, decadent, and always satisfying. No one does pot roast better than Main Street Café in Northport. It’s served on special, with a side of red cabbage, and potato latke. If you’re walking around Northport, and you see this is being served up, scratch your dinner plans and head inside. Another favorite is the Shed Bowl, from The Shed in Huntington. Roasted chicken, wild rice, arugula, radish, sweet potatoes, sunflower seeds, mushrooms, goat cheese, spiced honey vinaigrette. It’s harvest in a bowl! If bowls aren’t your preference, opt for the Herb Roasted Half Chicken (Free range, garden veggies, gravy) – it’s seriously delicious. Switching gears, comfort food doesn’t have to mean holiday-themed entrees. Instead, to me, it means food that fills you up – literally and soulfully. A recent trip to Little Lucharitos did just that. A quaint, quirky Mexican restaurant & tequila bar in Riverhead serving up extraordinary tacos, salsa and burritos. The BBQ Duck taco (meat is sourced from a local farm) was my favorite – slow cooked, tangy BBQ sauce – absolutely delicious. Pro Tip: make sure to order the salsa – it’s out of this world!
     You can’t write about comfort food without including some Italian recommendations. As a proud Italian, and Long Island native, there are only a handful of places I consider to be excellent. My short list includes: Robke’s, Branchinelli’s, 39 Italian Eatery and Restaurant Joanina. All provide exceptional food, a cozy, authentic atmosphere and signature elements that individually mark them as champions. At Robke’s, I opt for the specials, but I always start with the spicy shrimp. At Branchinelli’s, I stick to the classic parmigiana, and always order their house salad. At 39 Italian Eatery, my friends and family prefer the Pappardelle Bolognese and/or Cacio Pepe. Plus, the gelato is out of this world! Lastly, Restaurant Joanina – Eggplant to start, pizza, escarole and beans, linguine and clams – this place       reminds me of my childhood, spent in my grandparent’s kitchen. Everything is incredibly delicious!
     Fall is the perfect time of the year to reflect on the things we’re grateful for, and for me, that’s good food. Whether I’m with family, friends or a loved one – we’re usually chatting and spending time together in a setting that offers delicious comfort food. After all, at the end of the day, ‘food is the ingredient that binds us together.’