02/24/13 12:00pm
02/24/2013 12:00 PM

CARRIE MILLER PHOTO | Stephan Bogardus of North Fork Table & Inn will take his cooking game to the small screen next month on an episode of Food Network’s ‘Chopped.’

If you watch the popular Food Network contest show “Chopped,” you’ll have a local chef to root for in an episode airing next month.

Stephan Bogardus of Southold, chef de cuisine at The North Fork Table & Inn, will appear in an episode set to air at 10 p.m. March 12.

Mr. Bogardus, 25, learned his way around the kitchen working at several East End eateries. The chef, who speaks four languages, originally planned on attending law school, but was not accepted into any good schools, he said. On the advice of another chef, he attended the Culinary Institute of America, graduating in 2009.

Not long after, he made his was back to the North Fork.

Mr. Bogardus said Gerry Hayden, executive chef of The North Fork Table & Inn, recommended him to “Chopped” producers.

The show pits four chefs against each other competing for a chance to win $10,000. The challenge is to take a mystery basket of ingredients and turn them into dishes that are judged on creativity, presentation, and taste — with minimal time to plan and execute — a description of the show reads.

We sat down with Mr. Bogardus this week to discuss his career and his experience on the show:

Q. What would you say your specialty is?

A. What we have here at the North Fork Table & Inn, American cuisine and comfort food. Fresh local ingredients, they naturally display the pristine of the North Fork.

Q. Were you able to bring any North Fork flare to any of your dishes?

A. Absolutely. I like to feel being a native and a local out here, I brought a lot of personality and Long Island pride to the show for sure.

Q. One of the ingredients in the first round was beef tongue, had you ever worked with it before?

A. I make smoked beef tongue here at the restaurant. We purchased all the cows from Russell McCall at McCall Ranch this year, and so every two weeks we received a whole cow, that had the tongue in it. So I always did some kind of cure. I was quite aware of the ingredient.

Q. What was the most challenging aspect of the competition?

A. The timing is really, really hard. I had practiced a couple of times with twenty-minute increments and mystery baskets and things, it goes so much faster when you are in the studio.

It was hands down the most challenging 20 minutes of my life. Not only having to do what they ask you, to put together the best plate against these talented individuals, then there are cameras and lights and cords running across the floor you had to jump over. Something they did in the pantry, they put ingredients all over the place. It’s not all organized and together. There’s a lot of hunting and pecking that you have to do to assemble.

Q. Do you think your young age was an asset, or did it hinder your performance?

A. It was definitely a double-edged sword. It was great because I feel like a lot of the competitors underestimated me, but it was also challenging because my level of experience did not match most others. I would consider myself the least experienced of all the individuals.

Q. How did it feel to be selected as a contestant?

A. I knew I was being considered to be a contestant, but never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be selected. I’m just a 25-year-old from Southold, I never thought I’d be on TV.

It was a life-changing experience. It was truly an honor to be chosen as a competitor. There was really an acknowledgment toward years of hard work and experience, on a national level, which is pretty sweet.

cmiller@timesreview.com

02/18/13 4:00pm
02/18/2013 4:00 PM

SAMANTHA BRIX FILE PHOTO | Today is National Drink Wine Day.

Today is not only President’s Day, but National Drink Wine Day, a great reason to pick up a bottle of your favorite local wine to help celebrate the three-day weekend. The “holiday” is touted as a way “to spread the love and health benefits of wine.”

As you get cozy at your home or favorite local winery, take a minute to tell us:

What’s your favorite North Fork wine?

02/17/13 8:00am
02/17/2013 8:00 AM

CARRIE MILLER PHOTO | Mike Engle, Byron Preston and Keenan Zach of The Mike Engle Vibratrio perform at Palmer Vineyards in Riverhead Saturday afternoon.

Snow flurries fell as wine lovers and jazz musicians kicked off Winterfest’s Jazz on the Vine series Saturday afternoon. Originally scheduled to start Feb. 8, the series was postponed by last weekend’s blizzard.

Going on its sixth straight year, the Jazz on the Vine series is designed to bring visitors to the North Fork during the winter season. It will feature more than 80 concerts at local vineyards. Events are also scheduled at the newly renovated Suffolk Theater, Hotel Indigo and the Hilton Garden Inn in Riverhead.

“In the dead of winter, to see a full tasting room, it’s amazing,” said John Larsen, tasting room manager at Pellegrini Vineyards in Cutchogue. “It makes the winter go by that much quicker.”

Related: Jazz on the Vine schedule

Pellegrini Vineyards featured a Spherical Flamenco Jazz Trio, with Emma Larsson also performing.

“It’s nice to be able to sit, listen, and enjoy a glass of wine,” said Katie O’Callaghan, who traveled from Manhattan with Steve Messemer to enjoy a Valentine’s Day weekend.

“This is great, the place especially,” Ms. O’Callaghan said. “The acoustics are great, and its not all traditional jazz. It’s nice they do a different style.”

“The fact that it’s actually snowing adds to the charm,” Mr. Messemer said. “This is something we will definitely make into a yearly thing.”

The couple had never been to a Jazz on the Vine event before.

Pellegrini Vineyards will be hosting three other events throughout the series, Mr. Larsen said.

The Mike Engle Vibratrio, a three-man band led by Mike Engle, performed at Palmer Vineyards in Aquebogue Saturday. It was the band’s first time performing in the Jazz on the Vine series.

“We’re loving it,” said Keenan Zach, who plays bass. “It’s a great atmosphere. Exactly what the winter needs.”

“It’s inspiring to see so many people,” added Mike Engle, who described the trio’s music as “organic, spontaneous, but rooted in tradition.”

Mr. Engle said he would be honored to play in the series again.

“They are so nice and they sound great,” said Robin Helmer-Reich, who was cuddled up in a booth, sipping on red wine and listening close by. “Jazz on the Vine is a great program.”

This was the second year Ms. Helmer-Reich, of Center Moriches, has attended the series. “It’s a great thing to do in the dead of winter, when there aren’t too many choices of what to do.”

Blanche Pesc traveled from Rockville Center with her husband Dan and their dog to enjoy the afternoon.

“Every time we’ve come it’s been a great experience,” Ms. Pesc said. “You always end up meeting great people.”

Last year’s series brought more than 7,500 people to the North Fork, up from 6,000 in 2011. Events cost $20 at the door and include a glass of wine. You also get the chance to win a free night’s stay at an East End hotel with a gift basket of Long Island wines.

The events originally scheduled for the weekend of Feb. 8-10 have been postponed until March 22-24, extending the series another week.

Winterfest is produced by East End Arts, the Long Island Wine Council, the Long Island Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Suffolk County Office of Economic Development. For more information visit www.liwinterfest.com.

cmiller@timesreview.com

01/20/13 10:05am
01/20/2013 10:05 AM
KATHARINE SCHROEDER FILE PHOTO | Papo Vazquez Pirate Troubadors performing at Raphael during Jazz on the Vine 2012.

KATHARINE SCHROEDER FILE PHOTO | Papo Vazquez Pirate Troubadors performing at Raphael during Jazz on the Vine 2012.

The 2013 edition of the Winterfest Jazz on the Vine series kicks off February 8. Tickets to the concert events are $20.

Check out the complete schedule below:

A complete list of events for Long Island’s 2013 Jazz on the Vine Winterfest concert series

01/18/13 3:00pm
01/18/2013 3:00 PM
COURTESY PHOTO  |  Louisa and Alex Hargrave left Harvard University, where they met, 40 years ago to head to Long Island's East End.

COURTESY PHOTO | Louisa and Alex Hargrave left Harvard University, where they met, 40 years ago to head to Long Island’s East End.

The Long Island Wine Council celebrated its 40th anniversary Thursday night at Raphael Vineyards in Peconic. The North Fork wine industry began when Louisa and Alex Hargrave took a chance to try something never before done here. In the winter issue of the Long Island Wine Press, published by Times/Review, the Hargraves reflected on how it all began.

Louisa and Alex Hargrave stood under a sunny sky one unseasonably warm winter afternoon with two grape experts who had come from afar to take a gander at Long Island’s very first vineyard.

The young couple, neither of whom had any viticulture experience, were soliciting advice on growing stronger, more fruitful grapevines. The expert, who grew grapes in California, told them to keep the vines with the thickest wood and cut off the side shoots.

The Hargraves exchanged puzzled glances. Just minutes earlier, a grape expert from Cornell University’s Agricultural Experiment Station in upstate New York had given the exact opposite advice: Keep the thinnest wood and do not cut off the side shoots.

COURTESY PHOTO  |  Alex Hargrave majored in Asian studies before turning attention to wine making.

COURTESY PHOTO | Alex Hargrave majored in Asian studies before turning attention to wine making.

“We decided not to take anyone’s advice,” Louisa Hargrave recalled in a recent interview. “We had to inform ourselves. We couldn’t rely on anyone else.”

Exactly 40 years ago, the Hargraves left Harvard University, where they met, and headed for Long Island’s East End, a rural landscape covered with potato farms, cornfields and churches. There was not a single grapevine in the region, now characterized by a bustling wine industry.

The Hargraves had driven across the country to Napa Valley to visit vineyards and explore owning one but were disappointed at the time by the quality of the West Coast’s highly oxidized wines. They knew they wanted to grow vinifera grapes, which grow well in Europe, and were told by Cornell University researcher and agricultural scientist John Wickham that the climate and soils on Long Island were similar to those of France and other regions where vinifera grapes prosper.

And so, they set their sights on grape-growing on Long Island.

“We weren’t satisfied with anything else,” Hargrave said of their decision. “We were young and we thought we had nothing to lose.”

Alex Hargrave had majored in Asian studies and his wife earned degrees in teaching and government. If college taught them anything, though, it was that experts didn’t have all the answers. They couldn’t farm — neither had grown so much as a cherry tomato in a backyard garden — but they knew how do research and banked on their learning skills.

Hargraves2“We took a huge risk,” Hargrave said. “It’s the arrogance of youth — you think you can’t fail. You do what you want to do and just go for it.”

Sixty-six acres and many challenges later, the Hargraves had created a small winemaking operation, population two. The early days were fraught with challenges: diseased plants, destructive birds, natural disasters and nosy, anti-alcohol neighbors.

“There were people who would call reporters every time they saw a bug on a grape leaf and then there’d be some big story,” Hargrave recalled. On the whole, the couple were well-received by fellow farmers on the North Fork, but the “small but vocal faction” caused them their fair share of headaches.

Not having anyone to look to for advice or examples, the Hargraves made fresh decisions — and tragic mistakes.

Eric Fry, 20-year winemaker at Lenz Winery, which was founded a few years after Hargrave Vineyard, said other early vineyard managers and winemakers looked to the Hargraves to glean insight on what to do — and what not to do.

The biggest lesson the fledgling Long Island wine world learned from the Hargraves was where not to plant, Fry said. The Hargraves had planted vines in low spots, which turned out to be a vine’s arch-enemy. Lower ground is typically wet and cold — destructive conditions for a grapevine.

“They didn’t exactly know what they were doing and they made a lot of mistakes,” Fry said. “They were experimenters. Someone had to do that for us to find out.”

 

Their first wine, Hargrave admits, was a disaster. They stored a sorry Sauvignon Blanc in whiskey barrels instead of customary oak barrels.

“We didn’t know how important oak was,” she said.

The whiskey barrels stripped the wine of its color and added a heavy char flavor.

Though the early days were peppered with flops and faux pas, the Hargraves had fallen in love with the art of grape-growing and winemaking.

“I wanted to do work that was physical and meaningful and for my children to experience work effort,” Hargrave said. “I wanted our work to have results — something we could eat and drink.”

The couple’s two children did learn the hard work of farming a vineyard. Their son, Xander, remembers the endless work and spirited energy of each fall’s harvest — and his parents’ faithful devotion to their love of wine.

“They were stubbornly committed to wines they enjoyed drinking — wines that had an old world connection and quality,” said Xander Hargrave, who is now assistant winemaker at Peconic Bay Winery in Cutchogue.

He believes the local wine industry’s prosperity is rooted in a like-minded community with the same goals. “The health and success of the wine industry is linked to the health and success of the community,” he said. “Forty years of the wine industry is just the beginning.”

The Hargraves ended up selling their beloved vineyard just after harvest in 1999, leaving behind two decades of winemaking and a burgeoning wine region now dotted with dozens of vineyards.

True pioneers, the couple set the stage for scores of winemakers who would produce world-class, award-winning wines.

To this day, Louisa Hargrave wants not much more than an alluring glass of wine to relax with. Her idea of a great wine, she said, is one with subtlety, “an interesting and intricate aroma that doesn’t hit you over the head.”  She likes dynamic wines with energy, fruitiness and earthiness.

“Making wines that are very dynamic and have energy from the first taste to the last,” she said. “That’s where I think we succeeded and that’s where winemakers on Long Island today succeed.”

01/12/13 5:33pm
01/12/2013 5:33 PM

BARBARALLEN KOCH PHOTO | Blue Duck Bakery owner and master baker Keith Kouris of Aquebogue hands out tastings of sunflower rye bread with creamy dark mushroom topping which was paired with 2007 Sherwood Manor red wine blend.

Nancy and Keith Kouris had never given much thought to which wine might go best with their artisanal breads and spreads. But that was the task the Blue Duck Bakery owners were faced with for Saturday’s ‘Winter Foodie Series’ event hosted by Sherwood House Vineyards.

With notes on the wines from Sherwood co-owner Brian Sckipp, Ms. Kouris researched the spreads as her husband made the breads.

“We tried to match the notes on the wines with the spreads and breads,” Ms. Kouris said.

The result was five pairings: classic Parisian with tarragon/lemon butter spread and 2011 unoaked chardonnay; Italian Pugliese Sesamo with smoked brie and 2010 chardonnay; raisin walnut Levain with olive tapenade and 2007 Oregon Road merlot; pain Levain with roasted red peppers and 2007 cabernet franc; and the last one was German sunflower rye with dark mushroom cream sauce and 2007 Sherwood Manor blend.

“This is always my favorite,” Mr. Sckipp’s told the tasters of the final wine.

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Sherwood House Vineyards co-owner Brian Sckipp tells the tasters about the Sherwood House Manor wine, which he said was one of his favorites.

Mr. Kouris said that the final pairing was one of the easiest.

“I thought out of the box on this one,” he said. “It was rich and creamy with the earthy mushroom spread. The sunflowers adds the nuttiness to it.”

Mr. Sckipp said the duo did “an excellent job of pairing the nuances of the wine with the nuances of the bread.”

“We are truly fortunate to find wonderful local purveyors on both forks,” he said.

Sherwood House Vineyards, which has vines planted on 28 acres in Mattituck since 1996, is in its second season of their ‘Winter Foodie Series’ organized by tasting room manager Ami Davey. The tasting room is in Material Objects in Jamesport and the wine and food pairings take place once a month from November  through February in a cozy barn on the back of the property. So far this season they had tastings with Catapano goat cheese of Southold and a charcuterie platter from Lombardi Market of Holtsville.

Next month the tasting will be spaghetti and meatballs prepared by Jamesport’s Grana Wood Fired Pizza’s chef David Plath.

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Mr. Kouris hands out tastings of sunflower rye bread with creamy mushroom toppings.

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Blue Duck Bakery owners Nancy and Keith Kouris of Aquebogue talk about how they researched pairing their artisanal breads with the wines.

12/23/12 7:59am
12/23/2012 7:59 AM

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | Peconic Bay scallops seviche.

The North Fork is a beautiful peninsula of land surrounded by Peconic Bay, Long Island Sound and the Atlantic Ocean. The wetlands, varying salinity, tides and temperatures have created a seascape unique in the world. And the well-drained sandy soil and long growing season have favored agriculture for centuries. As the crush of population moves east, many of our long-developed resources have dwindled, but their traditions hang on. I have enjoyed being a professional chef on the North Fork for the past 40 years, year in, year out and year round. The foods that keep appearing over and over again are ducks, oysters, scallops, clams, finfish and myriad plant foods — including the wine.

As time moves on into the 21st century we sometimes forget that duck farming was a major industry, with production peaking at six million ducks in 1968 from over 30 producers. Greenport was once the oyster capital of the East Coast, with production peaking at about 25 million pounds of oyster meats in the 1930s. Commercial fishing has changed as aquaculture replaces the dwindling supply of wild fish. And the large crops of wholesale potatoes, cauliflower and cabbage have been gradually replaced by specialty farms that seek to compete in a changed marketplace.

But our cuisine, or the art of cookery using the foods and traditions of our area, has evolved into a distinct art form based on these wonderful ingredients. This Christmas dinner is a celebration of some of these special foods. The recipes are intended to serve eight people.

First Course

Peconic Bay Scallop Seviche

Combine in a bowl the juice of 3 limes and 1 teaspoon lime zest. Toss 1 pound of fresh bay scallops in this mixture and add 1/2 cup diced red onion, 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, 1 tablespoon minced jalapeno pepper, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, 1/2 teaspoon sea salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cover the bowl with plastic film and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours before serving.

At service time, remove the flesh from 2 avocados and cut into half-inch cubes. Lightly toss these in a bowl with the juice of 1 lime. Remove the leaves from 1 bunch of fresh watercress. Cut 1 cup of cherry tomatoes in half.

Place watercress in the bottoms of 8 martini glasses. Add the avocado next and place the scallops and tomatoes on top, pouring the sauce over all. Garnish with a little chopped cilantro.

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | A cup of oyster stew is ready to serve on a plate covered in hand painted insects.

Soup Course

Oyster Stew

Purchase 1 pint of fresh shucked oysters. Spray a sauté pan with no-stick and cook 1/4 pound of pancetta at medium heat. Remove to a paper towel, chop coarsely and set aside.

Add to the saucepan 1 tablespoon butter, 2 chopped leeks (white part), 2 minced scallions and 1 cup chopped celery. Season with 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning, 1 bay leaf, 1 teaspoon sea salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Cook covered at low heat until vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes.

Add 1 tablespoon flour and stir it into the mixture, continuing to cook another 2 minutes. Stir in 2 cups milk and 1 cup heavy cream and bring to a simmer.

Add the pint of oysters with their juices and gradually bring back to a simmer. Add the reserved pancetta and check for seasoning. Remove from the heat and stir in 1 cup crushed pilot crackers. Garnish with pilot crackers and serve.

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | Putting the garnishes on the Long Island duck.

Entrée

Brined/Steamed/Roasted Duck

Purchase a fresh 6-pound Long Island duck from a local retailer. Remove the giblets and neck from the cavity and remove the surrounding fat. Trim the wing tips, the tail and the flap of skin near the neck. Save these for another use and rinse the duck under cold water.

Prepare a brine by combining 2 cups orange juice with 2 cups water. Add 1/2 cup coarse salt, 12 bruised peppercorns, 1 bunch fresh thyme, 1 bunch fresh rosemary, 1 tablespoon minced garlic and 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger. Heat this mixture just enough to dissolve the salt. Add a cup of ice cubes to cool.

Place the duck in a glass or plastic container and pour the brine over it. Refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours.

Make a glaze by adding to a small saucepan 1/2 cup honey, 1/4 cup cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon soy sauce and 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard. Bring this mixture to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove the duck from the brine and dry with paper towels. Place it on a V-rack in a roasting pan, breast side up. With a sharp pointed knife, cut a diamond pattern of shallow cuts in the skin. Place in the cavity of the duck 1 quartered orange, 1 bunch of thyme and 1 bunch of rosemary. Tie the legs and wings close to the body with butcher’s twine.

Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil and pour it over the duck, letting the water end up in the bottom of the roasting pan. Cover the roasting pan tightly with foil and place in a 400-degree oven. Cook for 45 minutes and remove the duck from the oven.

Pour off the water and fat and replace the duck in the roasting pan on its rack. Brush the duck all over with the glaze and put it back in the oven, turning down the heat to 375. Let it cook, brushing it with glaze every half-hour, for 1 1/2 hours. If it begins to get too dark, place a loose piece of foil over the breast area. When finished, the duck should be a dark mahogany color and the legs should move easily when squeezed.

Remove duck from the oven and let it rest, covered with foil, for 20 minutes. Cut off the string and remove the herbs and orange from the cavity. Carve the duck at the table or cut it into eighths and partially debone.

Orange Sauce

Purchase 6 navel oranges and squeeze the juice from 4 of them. Remove the zest from 1 orange and set aside. Peel remaining 2 oranges and cut the sections from the membranes.

In a small saucepan, bring to a boil 1/4 cup sugar and 2 tablespoons water. Cook until it begins to caramelize and turns golden. Add the reserved orange juice, 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar, 1/4 cup minced shallots and 1 cup chicken stock. Simmer until reduced by one-third and swirl in 2 tablespoons cold butter. Add back the orange sections and the zest along with 1 tablespoon orange liqueur, such as triple sec or Grand Marnier.

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | Raspberry trifle for dessert.

Dessert

Raspberry Trifle

Begin by making a plain pound cake. Cream 1/2 pound butter with 2 cups sugar for 5 minutes, using a paddle and a mixer at medium speed. Beat in 5 large eggs, one at a time.

Place 3 cups flour, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda and 1 teaspoon salt in a bowl and combine with a whisk.

Combine 3/4 cup buttermilk and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract in a small bowl.

Turn the mixer on to slow speed and alternately add the flour mixture and buttermilk mixture, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients.

Spray 2 loaf pans with no-stick and divide the batter between them. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 55 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Remove from oven, cool slightly and turn out cakes on a rack to cool. Wrap and refrigerate.

To make the trifle, make a syrup by bringing to a boil 1/2 cup sugar, 1/4 cup water, 1/4 cup lemon juice and 2 tablespoons raspberry liqueur (Chambord, framboise). Remove syrup from heat and let cool.

In a bowl, place 1 cup raspberry jam, 2 tablespoons Chambord and 4 cups fresh raspberries. Combine them gently and set aside.

In a mixer, whip 2 cups heavy cream to stiff peaks and fold in 2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar.

Slice the chilled pound cake into 3/4-inch-thick slices. Cut the slices in half to make squares. Fill the bottom of a trifle dish with pound cake (some pieces of cake will have to be trimmed) and brush with syrup. Spread the raspberry mixture over this and then a layer of whipped cream. Repeat with two more layers. Garnish the top with 1 cup fresh raspberries and chill for 2 hours.

(The pound cake recipe was adapted from Ina Garten and the trifle was adapted from Martha Stewart.)

John Ross, a chef and author, has been an active part of the North Fork food and wine community for more than 35 years. Email: johncross@optonline.net.

 

12/08/12 4:00pm
12/08/2012 4:00 PM
Shellbration, Greenport Village, Long Island festval

GIANNA VOLPE PHOTO | Noah Schwartz, chef and co-owner of Noah’s Restaurant in Greenport, prepares one of the dishes he plans to serve this weekend.

Local winemakers and restaurateurs are poised to come together this weekend to celebrate Greenport Village and the seafood so bountiful in North Fork waters.

It’s called the Shellabration and participants can treat their taste buds to tapas-sized culinary masterpieces from 11 of Greenport’s leading chefs, several of whom will serve more than one dish. They’ll also offer wine pairings from local vineyards to accompany their dishes. All proceeds will go to charity.

This inaugural Shellabration will benefit both Greenport’s roller rink restoration project and SPAT (Southold Project in Aquaculture Training), a donation-reliant arm of Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Marine Program.

Participants must purchase a $10 wristband, available at Greenport Harbor Brewing Company, where they can enjoy a free beer and raw bar tasting and get a map of participating village restaurants. Food and wine will be served from noon to 5 p.m. on Dec. 8 and 9.

“This is a great sort of morale booster because the restaurants had to reach out and partner with a vineyard,” said Deborah Pittorino of Cuvée Wine Bar on Front Street. “It’s helping strengthen relationships between our businesses to work in a collaborative manner to get people out there to explore the village in the wintertime.”

Ms. Pittorino said another plus is the benefit will help support “two very worthy causes.”

“SPAT is really an amazing program,” she said. “For many years our shellfish were disappearing and Cornell developed this program to teach people how to cultivate their own oysters. It’s a grass roots movement teaching people how to care for all nature, land and aquatic.”

Cuvée will serve two dishes, perhaps three, that will be paired with wines from Raphael Vineyards in Peconic.

“We’re going to be serving cups of New England clam chowder with local clams paired with Raphael’s Chardeaux, a chardonnay blend, and our signature dish, oysters cuvée, flash-fried oysters on a bed of spinach with truffled beurre blanc, which will be paired with Raphael’s sauvignon blanc,” said Ms. Pittorino.

Getting creative with his dish, chef Scott Bollman at Bruce’s Cheese Emporium said his shop is literally pairing with Osprey’s Dominion. His dish, a Peconic Bay scallop salad to be served with the winery’s unwooded 2010 chardonnay, which is fermented in steel barrels, will resemble an osprey’s nest.

“The marriage of local ingredients is what makes this such a great event,” Mr. Bollman said. “Hopefully it will bring a good amount of people out to Greenport.”

Winemaker Kareem Massoud at Paumanok Vineyards said matching local seafood dishes with local wines is a “natural fit” for an aquaculture festival.

“Light crisp wines with good acidity is the perfect description for what you want to have with shellfish,” Mr. Massoud said. “I think everyone wants to see the Peconic Bay scallop return to its glory days, so we’re happy to help support that effort and if it also helps support the local economy in a slow time, it’s a win-win situation.”

Chef and co-owner Noah Schwartz of Noah’s, also on Front Street, said restaurateurs all support the restoration of the roller rink in the American Legion building on lower Third Street.

“We’re all for the skating rink getting back in action,” Mr. Schwartz said.

At presstime, other restaurants taking part in Shellabration were Biere, Butta Cakes, First and South, Frisky Oyster, Front Street Station, North Fork Oyster Company. Scrimshaw and Vines & Branches. Other wines will be provided by Castello di Borghese, Lieb, Macari, One Woman, Peconic Bay, Shinn and Sparkling Pointe.

American Legion post commander Craig Richter said the group is excited to put the incoming donations from the Shellabration to use at the rink.

“We’ve just about completed the exterior of the building and over the winter we’re going to put in all-new Americans With Disabilities Act-compliant bathrooms, a kitchen and a new floor,” Mr. Richter said. “It’s going to take us a while, but we’re getting closer all the time.”

Kim Tetrault, the aquaculture specialist who heads up the SPAT program, said the program is always thankful for donations and the event is important to reaching one of the group’s goals.

“Our organization promotes the roles that both environmental groups and aquaculture play in the bays and our local community and we want people to come on board with what’s special about the North and South forks,” Mr. Tetrault said. “The Shellabration is exactly that; it’s celebrating everyone coming together to celebrate the fare that is offered here. All of these groups coming together to celebrate, raise awareness and keep our heritage and way of life going. That’s almost more important than the donation.”

For more information, visit shellabration.li.

gvolpe@timesreview.com