A Day of Sailing and Wine Tasting on LI









I went on a day trip this past Sunday with Dynamic Outdoors.  The itinerary included a sailing outing on Long Island and a wine tasting in the North Fork region.  How could I say no?

There were four pick up locations in different areas of the city and protocol was that you would email the hosts with your preferred pick up spot.  After everyone was rounded up, the group departed for Long Island in two separate vans and headed for Oyster Bay.  Once at the bay, we set sail on the Christeen which is the oldest oyster sloop in America and a National Historic Landmark.  Everyone on board got to participate with some of the sailing tasks if they wanted to and that was a lot of fun.  The rest of the time aboard was quite relaxing as we passed amazing houses and other impressive ships along the way.  I really enjoyed the change of scenery.  After a 2 hour sailing journey we returned to the vans so we could head to our next destination, the North Fork wineries!

Macari Vineyards was our first stop, where we each enjoyed a wine tasting flight.  There was an optional chocolate tasting available although I personally did not try it.  Following the wine tasting, our group sat outside to eat lunch, relaxed with a newly purchased bottle of wine and mingled while enjoying the scenery.  After a while, our trip leaders took a vote to see who wanted to stay for one more vineyard visit or who wanted to return to the city.  Luckily, the group split up evenly enough that one van could return and the other could take those who stayed across the street to Martha Clara Vineyards.  Since this second visit was not included in the trip cost, each person was responsible for paying for any tastings they chose to do.  We were all having so much fun, that is was hard to get back in the van to return to city life.

I would definitely go on another day trip adventure with Dynamic Outdoors.  The leaders were organized but also allowed those in the group to add to the itinerary with another vineyard visit which I really appreciated.  We had a fun mix of people on this particular day so it was great to continue the activities for a little while longer.  Dynamic Outdoors hosts a variety of trips and I look forward to going with them again.

Summer Refreshment at Its Best


Watermelon Margarita

Fatty’s Cafe in Astoria has created the ultimate summer beverage.  They already serve a wide variety of mixed drinks, have an impressive selection of beer and are known to serve one of the best mojitos around.  This weekend during one of my regular visits, they brought forth the perfect way to cool off on a hot summer day.  Mixed with real watermelon puree, I tried the new watermelon margarita and it is mouth-watering delicious!  I am not even the biggest watermelon fan, but once I tasted a sip I was instantly converted.  This beverage was only introduced this weekend and word about it is quickly spreading. 

In addition to the watermelon margarita, Fatty’s Cafe also started to offer a watermelon mimosa option during their weekend brunch hours and there is a watermelon daiquiri that can be made if that is your preference.  All I know is that you want to order this drink while you can because you certainly don’t want to be the only one who missed out!   And once you try one, you will find it hard to resist ordering another.  While cooling off at Fatty’s, be sure to indulge in their fabulous food offerings too as they serve dinner daily and weekend brunch from 11am-4pm.

A Taste of New England in NYC

lobster shack

Craving a delicious lobster roll but not able to get to New England?  Well, the tastes of New England have come to New York City by way of the Urban Lobster Shack!  With two Urban Lobster locations, one in the East Village (240 E Houston St # 2) and one in the Financial District(15 Stone St. btwn Broad St. and Broadway) you don’t have to go too far to enjoy a scrumptious lobster roll or one of the many other delicious options offered. 

I stumbled upon Urban Lobster by luck – I walked past it on the way to the train after work.  Many times, I would see the sign with the special combos being offered for lobster rolls and shrimp rolls as I headed for the train.  Sure enough, if you look carefully, hidden amidst other restaurants and a parking garage entrance, is a tiny space serving lobster rolls.  Since I was heading home when I’d pass by, I tried to make it a point to remember to come for lunch some time.   Finally, the timing was right and I tried the lobster roll special offered for window service customers.  This special included a lobster roll, soup, chips, and coleslaw.  Needless to say, I have been coming back ever since.  I recently tried their shrimp roll special and the spicy crab & sweet corn chowder (pictured above).   Every bite was delectable and my lunch was quickly devoured. 

Even though it is a very small location, especially the one in the Financial District, they have a wide variety of seafood, soups and side items on the menu in addition to the specials listed outside.  So if you are in the area of either of their two locations and love seafood, don’t pass by the Urban Lobster Shack without a visit!