Shelter Island, a short ferry ride from Greenport from the North or Sag Harbor from the South, this is a large island found between the North and South Forks of Long Island. Only accessible by ferries, this 12.5 sq. mile island is primarily residential with a few good restaurants and hotels along with outdoor activities and wonderful beaches. In addition there are wetlands, forests, golf courses and marinas. One-third of the island is set aside as a nature preserve. The population of around 2,400 year-round residents grows to nearly 12, 000 in the summer months.
My favorites include:
Sunset Beach: This hotel and restaurant is a great spot on Shore Road with a 20 room hotel, French Bistro and great bar. It is across from the beach. This is the perfect spot for a drink at the end of the day to watch the sunset with a cocktail.
Vine St. Cafe: At 41 S. Ferry Rd., this is a great restaurant in the middle of the island under the same ownership as Blue Canoe in Greenport. The atmosphere is comfortable, yet contemporary and food excellent. I enjoyed the prix fixe menu before 6pm with some wonderful raw clams, a great miso glazed salmon on a bed of vegetables with rice plus a coconut sorbet for dessert. It is popular so make sure to book your reservation before.
The NY Times also likes Seven, an upscale, boutique B&B.
Other recommended restaurants include restaurant and bar at The Ram’s Head Inn, Stars Cafe, a Tex-Mex cafe for coffee, breakfast and lunch, the restaurant at the Shelter Island House and the bar and restaurant at The Pridwin Hotel, a classic resort hotel from 1927 with great views. 18 Bay Restaurant is a innovative, Italian inspired restaurant in an old Victorian home.
Commander Cody’s is a fresh fish market where you can also also take out seafood and other items. You can eat inside or at outside picnic tables. SALT Waterfront Bar + Grill gets good press for its seafood, dockside location and live music. Make sure to grab a drink at the Shipwreck Bar, its 1930’s sailboat, turned bar, in the boatyard next door.
There are a number of outdoor activities as well including bike rentals from Picozi’s Bike Shop, tennis at Dering Harbor Inn, hiking at the Mashomack Preserve, kayak rentals and tours at Shelter Island Kayak plus golf at the Shelter Island Country Club a public nine-hole golf course established in 1901. It has the Flying Goat restaurant and a bar. You can also attend a classical music concert at the Perlman Music Program.