Quantcast

Long Island Press

2416 POSTS 0 COMMENTS
The Long Island Press

OpEd: The Thoroughbred Horse Industry Helped Me Achieve My Dreams

nyra
Rashed Mian/Long Island Press

By David Berrios

Interviewing in the fall of 2018 for a position in the Information Technology Department of the New York Racing Association (NYRA), I remember being struck by something I had never thought about before.

My interview that day was in an area that faces the 1½-mile dirt oval at Belmont Park, offering me a view – and a part of the track – I’d never seen or visited.

That’s because I was more accustomed to the track’s backstretch, the expansive barn area beyond the track where my parents worked with the horses – my dad as a groom and my mom as a hot walker. Although I grew up in Elmont, a stone’s throw from Belmont Park, working for NYRA on the “frontside” of the business as I do now is in a sense a long way from the part of the track that I knew.

The racetrack has been a part of my world for as long as I can remember. As kids, my older sister, Jessica, and I loved accompanying our dad to work. From watching my parents leave most days at 5 a.m., I learned to appreciate their sacrifice, especially all those mornings when our dad would cut away from the track to drive me to school. A lot of my friends are the sons and daughters of backstretch workers; and for several summers as teenagers, Jessica and I worked as white caps or ushers at historic Saratoga Race Course.

Because of the support of the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association (NYTHA) Scholarship program, I was fortunate to be provided with financial aid. In fact, my sister and I both graduated from colleges within the City University of New York (CUNY) system because of our connection with horse racing.

Some may think that horse racing is a sport for the elite or privileged few. From my experience, that depiction couldn’t be further from the truth. The heart and soul of our sport are the hard-working people on the backstretch who make racing possible throughout New York and across the country. They’re people like my mom and dad, for whom racing is a livelihood and has given my sister and me the opportunity to go to college.

These job opportunities went so far beyond my immediate circle, and in reality, the sport of horse racing provides thousands of good-paying jobs to families just like mine.

I’m living proof that thoroughbred racing is as much about the people who work in the industry to raise their families as it is about the beautiful racehorses we’re so proud to care for every single day.

David Berrios is a member of the NYRA Information Technology team.

Sign up for Long Island Press’ email newsletters here. Sign up for home delivery of Long Island Press here. Sign up for discounts by becoming a Long Island Press community partner here.

Long Island Holiday Events 2021

holiday events
Getty Images

DAVE KOZ AND FRIENDS CHRISTMAS TOUR 2021

An enchanting night of jazz as Grammy-nominated saxophonist Dave Koz embarks on his 24th annual Christmas tour. Tilles Center for the Performing Arts, 720 Northern Blvd., Brookville, tillescenter.org, $57-$92. 7 p.m. Dec. 5.

MARIE OSMOND

The renowned country pop singer performs her “A Symphonic Christmas” tour, spreading the holiday spirit in anticipation of her upcoming album “Unexpected.” NYCB Theatre at Wesbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury, thetheatreatwestbury.com, $49.50-$213.50. 8 p.m. Dec. 7.

EILEEN IVERS “JOYFUL CHRISTMAS”

The Grammy awarded fiddler combines her Irish roots with soulful song for a dazzling Christmas celebration. Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts, 71 East Main St., Patchogue, patchoguetheatre.org, $28-$58. 8 p.m. Dec. 10.

THE NUTCRACKER

Peconic Ballet Theatre’s production of the iconic holiday spectacular. Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center, 76 Main St., Westhampton Beach, whbpac.org, $25. 12 p.m. and 7 p.m. Dec. 11. 12 p.m. and 5 p.m. Dec. 12.

LATIN NIGHT CHRISTMAS CONCERT

J Alvarez, a Puerto Rican reggaeton singer, takes the stage for an explosive one night performance. The Space at Westbury Theater, 250 Post Ave., Westbury, thespaceatwestbury.com, $35-$65. 9:30 p.m. Dec. 12.

THE GATEWAY PRESENTS HOLIDAY SPECTACULAR ON ICE

The magic of the holidays is elevated with an icy night of song and dance on figure skates! Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts, 71 East Main St., Patchogue, thegateway.org, $29.50-$89. 7 p.m. Dec. 17.

COUNTESS LUANN DE LESSEPS

The Real Housewife of New York performs “A Very Countess Christmas,” a cabaret with original songs like “Money Can’t Buy You Class” and “Viva La Diva.” The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington, paramountny.com, $39.50-$118. 8 p.m. Dec. 19.

THE ROCKVILLE CENTRE GUILD FOR THE ARTS & LEGGZ LTD DANCE PRESENT: TCHAIKOVSKY’S NUTCRACKER BALLET

An array of dancers, from the New York City Ballet to Broadway, and a live orchestra bring Tchaikovsky’s timeless masterpiece to life. The Madison Theatre at Molloy College, 1000 Hempstead Ave., Rockville Centre, madisontheatreny.org, $25-$50. 7 p.m. Dec. 21-23.

For more guides about things to do on Long Island, visit longislandpress.com/category/everything-long-island.

Sign up for Long Island Press’ email newsletters here. Sign up for home delivery of Long Island Press here. Sign up for discounts by becoming a Long Island Press community partner here.

Founder of God’s Blessings Plan Left 6-figure Job to Run Nonprofit

god's blessings plan
Kiora Johnson (right) discusses where attendees should stand at a Sept. 26 toy giveaway with Janine Saulsbury, executive director of Share for Life (left) and another volunteer. (Photo courtesy Kiora Johnson)

By Aliya Schneider

Long Island resident Kiora Johnson, founder and executive director of God’s Blessings Plan, said she left her six-figure finance career to pursue community service, guided by her Christian faith.

It all started after returning to work from maternity leave in the fall of 2017. She was noticing more homeless people on her way to work, and she wasn’t sure if it was because of her break from commuting or if the homeless population suddenly skyrocketed.

“At the very least, they’re somebody’s child and we kind of walk past them,” she said.

In early November, she noticed a homeless man pulling pieces off of his sandwich, sharing them with pigeons.

“It literally stopped me in my tracks because I was going to walk across the street and I felt like God was like, he’s sharing what little he has and you can’t even look him in the eye,” she said.

She wanted to help the man, but didn’t want to give him money to support any “bad habits” he may have. She read about “blessings bags,” which are donated bags full of basic necessities, like toiletries and gift cards to get food. She planned to give out 50 bags before Thanksgiving that year, but she said God told her to give them out on Jan. 2, when there would be fewer community giveaways.

“I hand wrote in each one of them ‘to God’s child’ to let them know that they’re loved by others and by God,” she said.

In 2018, she quit her job and started God’s Blessings Plan, a non-profit.

In 2020, she also created Living Water Health, a company that sells cleaning supplies. The business both brings a source of income to her family and helps sustain her non-profit, as 10% of profits go to God’s Blessings Plan.

Johnson does not take home a salary from the 501c3 and its only paid employee is a virtual assistant.

In 2020, God’s Blessings Plan had $39,350 of revenue and $37,027 of expenses, according to information provided by the organization to Guidestar, a database of non-profit organizations. In 2018, the organization served 400 people, which rose to 2,000 in 2019 and 2,600 in 2020.

The non-profit’s first Bronx event was in March this year, which distributed food and basic necessities like toiletries. Then, in August, another event in the borough offered school supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE).

Johnson’s next events will be held this Wednesday and Thursday, the first in the Bronx and the second in Queens.

On Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving, from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Graham Triangle, a grassy area surrounded by Third and Lincoln avenues between East 137th and 138th streets, 500 people will be able to receive food, winter coats and accessories, baby supplies, toiletries, PPE and cooking supplies on a first-come, first-serve basis. On Thanksgiving, 300 people will have the same opportunity in Queens.

At both events, there will be a 17-foot truck with two 80-inch television screens, which her uncle owns, playing Christian rap, she said.

Both events will also have representatives from Hire Point Staffing Solutions, a Bronx-based staffing agency, and Ena’s Driving School, a Queens-based school that offers free CDL licenses. The goal is to help people find employment or new employment, addressing people’s long-term needs alongside the distributed necessities.

“Now all of a sudden you’re standing in a space in maybe February where you’re making $50,000, $70,000 dollars a year and a couple of months ago you needed a coat and diapers and wipes for your kids,” she said.

Johnson started the non-profit in Queens, so that’s where most of the programming has been concentrated. She moved to Long Island with her husband — who helps with both initiatives — and now four-year-old son after the pandemic hit, so her events span across New York City and Long Island.

While Johnson said her organization’s mission “is to be the answer to prayer” and to be ambassadors “of Jesus Christ on earth,” its events are open to anyone, no matter their religious background.

Reach Aliya Schneider at aschneider@schnepsmedia.com or (718) 260-4597. For more coverage, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram @bronxtimes.

This story first appeared on BxTimes.com.

Sign up for Long Island Press’ email newsletters here. Sign up for home delivery of Long Island Press here. Sign up for discounts by becoming a Long Island Press community partner here.

What is The Best American/Continental Restaurant on Long Island?

Getty Images

There are plenty of restaurants on Long Island that have American and continental menus, but when this is the kind of food you crave, what is the best American/Continental restaurant on Long Island?

Long Islanders voted City Cellar Wine Bar & Grill the Best American/Continental Restaurant on Long Island in the 2021 Bethpage Best of Long Island contest!

City Cellar Wine Bar & Grill is an upscale, modern American restaurant that offers brunch, lunch and dinner as well as a wide selection of drinks. If you are looking for a night out with your significant other or a girl’s night, this place has you covered with its relaxed and upscale environment. Both the brunch and lunch menus include individual meals as well as boards for the tables. Each of these boards feed about 2-3 people and are a great option if your group is looking to try multiple dishes at once. Pair one of these boards with a side and wine from their extensive list for a meal to remember!

City Cellar Wine Bar & Grill is located at 1080 Corporate Dr. in Westbury. It can be reached at 516-693-5400 or citycellarny.com

To find all the other 2021 Bethpage Best of Long Island contest winners, visit bestoflongisland.com Vote for your favorite businesses and people in the 2022 Bethpage Best of Long Island program through Dec. 15.

To read more Best of Long Island Spotlights, visit longislandpress.com/category/boli-spotlight

Sign up for Long Island Press’ email newsletters hereSign up for home delivery of Long Island Press here. Sign up for discounts by becoming a Long Island Press community partner here.

Spectacular Colonial on the Bay in Massapequa Park Asks $1.3M

massapequa park

A grandly spectacular and cozy colonial home on the bay is listed for sale in Massapequa Park.

Between its finished basement, spacious rooms, and tropical backyard, this is the ultimate house for entertaining guests. The basement makes a great game room and TV room. Outdoors, a large patio and pergola sit beside an inground pool with a waterfall and hot tub. The patio also boasts an outdoor kitchen and wood burning fireplace.

Built in 1970, the home’s exterior is part-brick, part-frame, aluminum, and vinyl siding. Its regal style permeates through the interior, as well. 

Inside, the house has hardwood floors, custom blinds, and a spiral staircase. The large chef’s kitchen features two ovens, a warming drawer, three dishwashers, two sinks and prep areas, a baking counter, a separate sub-zero refrigerator and freezer, and a six-burner gas stove.

There are three gas fireplaces in the house — in the main bedroom, den, and living room. The den also has a projector and drop-down screen for movie watching. All five bedrooms have their own bathrooms. Plus, the basement has a wine cellar and wet bar.

The home is located just a few blocks from the village bay front park and playground in the Massapequa School District.

The asking price is $1,300,000, not including the annual property tax of $21,270.

The real estate agent listed for the property is Barry Paley, of Keller Williams Points North, who can be reached at 516-865-1800.

For more real estate news, visit longislandpress.com/category/real-estate.

Sign up for Long Island Press’ email newsletters here. Sign up for home delivery of Long Island Press here. Sign up for discounts by becoming a Long Island Press community partner here.

OpEd: Broadband Access Is a Long Island Problem

broadband access
Getty Images

By Rebecca L. Watts, Ph.D.
Regional Vice President, Western Governors University

Much has been written about the digital divide — the lack of broadband access, specifically — in New York. Rural communities upstate are reeling from the effects. The sheer number of people without high-speed internet in New York City is a major issue.

But we don’t hear enough about the harsh realities on Long Island. The issue shouldn’t be minimized or ignored. Parts of Long Island remain disconnected.

Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s September 2021 report on broadband access found that 9.2% of households on Long Island don’t have a subscription to home broadband services. Despite having the lowest percentage of those left behind in the state, that rate represents 87,730 households — families who, without broadband, don’t have the same educational or work opportunities as their neighbors. Beyond learning and economic disparities, for these families, telehealth services aren’t an option. Legal counsel — a well-established shortage in the more sparsely populated areas of New York — remains out of reach.

The reasons for not subscribing to broadband can be situational and complicated. Often, it involves affordability. For others, it simply comes down to insufficient infrastructure. Of the 253,000 people in the state whose geographic areas are still not wired for broadband, 25% live on Long Island.

In total, 61,231 Long Islanders live in areas that don’t have wired, high-speed broadband available. While the exact locations are not detailed, the comptroller’s analysis of FCC data shows that nearly 51,700 people in Suffolk County — where 2.7% of the population live in rural areas and family-owned farmlands dominate the landscape on the east end — are missing the “last mile” of broadband infrastructure.

The timing of the report comes amid a watershed era for broadband connectivity with the need for remote engagement exacerbated by the pandemic. Without question, access is not a luxury. High-speed internet is an essential vehicle for the delivery of high quality virtual K-12 education for families with young children, and access to advanced learning and dual enrollment courses for rural high school students. Broadband is also central to enabling Long Islanders to stay safe and work remotely as the Delta variant persists.

In other words, internet service is a vital community resource that people use for essential activities contributing to quality of life. New York has made commendable strides in recent years and has attempted to address broadband affordability through legislative means. At the federal level the bipartisan infrastructure framework making its way through Congress could infuse millions of dollars into that effort.

Other elements of effective state strategy include public-private partnerships that create synergistic impact by opening access to online learning that provides pathways for residents to gain the learning, skills and qualifications employers trust.

Improving access to broadband internet for all of New York’s communities is a key factor in preparing residents for in-demand careers. We cannot afford to let insufficient local infrastructure reduce economic opportunity for Long Islanders.

The state must commit to closing the digital divide by focusing on infrastructure and by working with private industry on a viable statewide plan that will make affordable, high-speed broadband available to every resident. This is critical work that will strengthen Long Island’s communities — their businesses, their local economies, and, most importantly, their people.

Rebecca L. Watts, Ph.D., serves as a regional vice president for Western Governors University (WGU), a non-profit, accredited university focused on competency-based learning that serves more than 130,000 students, including around 3,000 in New York State and 425 on Long Island. She holds a doctorate in higher education leadership from Ohio University.

3 New Restaurant Openings on Long Island

restaurant openings
Courtesy Arcadia Retro Eats via Instagram

By Justin Mitselmakher

ARCADIA RETRO EATS

Levittown is taking it old school with the opening of Arcadia Retro Eats, a new joint combining classic American grub with timeless arcade games.

With inventions like bagel byte fries ($9) — fried everything bagel topped with cheese, sauce and pepperoni— TV’s Bar Rescue Chef Brian Duffy serves up salads, wings, brick-pressed burgers and four handheld sandwiches, like the standout Shoreham hot chicken ($12) for spice fanatics. Cheese lovers can indulge in eight different grilled cheese sandwiches, even one on a grilled glazed donut!

While the food packs the flavor, arcade games like The Simpsons, Mortal Kombat, Donkey Kong, and Ms. Pac-Man bring the fun to diners of all ages. 

2890 Hempstead Tpke., Levittown, 516-899-5309, arcadialevittown.com

FOUR

An intimate dining experience awaits in a quaint Oyster Bay Victorian cottage.

Chef Jesse Schenker, creator of 2 Spring, opens FOUR, a 10-seat chef’s counter where diners watch Schenker create a 12- to 15- course tasting menu before their eyes, lasting about two and a half hours. At this Scandinavian, minimalist-style open kitchen, the menu focuses on raw fish and shellfish. With attention to detail, tableware pieces are not repeated throughout the dinner. 

Reservations are made on Tock, at $245 per person. A wine pairing may be added for $185 per person, curated from the 500 listed wines in the underground cellar. 

4 Spring St., Oyster Bay, 516-624-6877, 4springstreet.com

ZEST

Food and art meld at Zest, a fitting name for the new restaurant specializing in small plates with a vibrant ambiance.

Zest focuses on fresh seasonal ingredients and innovative techniques, according to Chef Michael Liebman, who revamped the space where he served as head chef at the former Slice of Bay Shore. The menu features an extensive list of tapas-style appetizers, which are meant to be shared and sampled. From Mediterranean-style loaded pita chips to smoked brisket poutine, a barbecued spin on the Canadian classic, Zest dips its toes into an array of cuisines. 

Zest is also visually explosive: Guests are engulfed by colorful walls filled with pop art paintings, perfect for an Instagram-friendly experience. 

298 W. Main St., Bay Shore, 631-647-4499, zestlongisland.com

For more food and drink coverage, visit longislandpress.com/category/food-drink.

Sign up for Long Island Press’ email newsletters here. Sign up for home delivery of Long Island Press here. Sign up for discounts by becoming a Long Island Press community partner here.

Grand Victorian-era Home in Greenport Asks $1.8M

greenport

A grand-yet-quaint, mid-19th century house is listed for sale at 2345 Main Rd. in Greenport.

David Gelston Floyd, grandson of William Floyd, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, built the house in 1827, according to the listing. Famous North Fork families, such as the Floyds and the Youngs have lived at the address.

The large, charming house resembles a Victorian cottage with period architectural details embellishing both the interior and exterior, which had yellow frame siding, white window frames and features, and dark-colored shutters.

The spacious, wrap-around porch and gazebo are two stand-out features to this 1.1-acre property, which also has a long, private driveway and green outdoor space.

This 5,000-square-foot home has a total of four bedrooms, two full bathrooms, and two half bathrooms. One of the bedrooms has its own second-floor balcony. There is also a sunroom on the second floor, plus a few attic spaces with slanted ceilings in the triangle-shaped corners of the home.

The home has a formal living room and formal dining room, both with fireplaces, a library, and spacious bedrooms.

The asking price is $1,850,000, not including the annual property tax of $16,130. 

The real estate agent listed for the property is Gerald Cibulski, of Century 21 Albertson Realty, who can be reached at 631-765-3800.

For more real estate news, visit longislandpress.com/category/real-estate.

Sign up for Long Island Press’ email newsletters here. Sign up for home delivery of Long Island Press here. Sign up for discounts by becoming a Long Island Press community partner here.

Long Island Entrepreneurs Bring Handmade Products to Market

handmade
Dana Porciello, owner of retail soap shop, The Soothery, in Northport. (Photo by Bernadette Starzee)

By Bernadette Starzee

Dana Porciello began making artisan soap bars as a creative outlet. After several years of developing her soaps and other products, she opened a retail store in Northport Village called The Soothery in May 2021. 

Porciello, who worked as a ceramic artist and was the ceramic artist in residence at Stony Brook University before having children, was going through some challenges in her life and thought developing a creative business would help her deal with those challenges.

She makes her soaps with high-quality ingredients such as coconut oil and olive oil, merging colors and scents to convey a feeling, and she gives them names like “Beach Day,” “Citrus Basil” and “Pumpkin Pickin’.” She began selling them at craft fairs about four years ago and eventually on her website, TheSoothery.com. 

“The response of people to my products was so powerful,” she said. “I loved knowing how much my products made people happy.”

With an eye toward opening a retail store, Porciello expanded her product line by creating salt scrub bars, lotion bars, and lip balms, and attended trade fairs to source additional products from other artisans. 

“If it’s something that is soothing and that would have comforted me when I was going through hard times, then I include it,” she said.

The Soothery’s items include cozy bathrobes, blankets, slippers, candles, and inspirational cards.

Since the store’s opening, Porciello said, sales and local support have been strong.

“I am living my dream,” she said. 

Maddalena Harris also began hand-crafting soap as a way to deal with a difficult time. 

“My husband was getting sick, and I was looking for a creative outlet,” said Harris, who has always been drawn to the arts. After visiting several craft fairs, the Northport resident discovered an affinity for the soap-making community. 

“Soapers are so passionate about their art form, and they’re so generous,” she said. “I said, this is something I could do. My husband was on board, as he always was, and I began making soap.”

After her husband passed away, Harris continued to make decorative soap, with subtle aromas and high-quality ingredients like olive, coconut, and avocado oil and therapeutic-grade essential oils. She has made about 500 bars under the brand name Maddalena’s Soap du Jour, giving away many of them as she focused on perfecting the process. Now exploring ways to turn her hobby into a business, Harris was particularly successful selling soap at a fundraiser for a local arts group. She donated 40% of the proceeds to the organization, and she recently took a table at a local church fair. 

“Doing craft fairs is a good method for validating your ideas and seeing how your product sells. You can get great feedback and earn money at the same time,” said Brian Fried, a Melville-based serial inventor, inventor coach, and founder of the National Inventor Club, an online group that he expanded nationally from the Long Island Inventors Club, which met at Farmingdale State College before the pandemic.  

But as sales at craft fairs are limited by the number of attendees, Fried counsels entrepreneurs about the benefits of exploring online sales.  

“You can reach the whole world online and use social media to drive traffic to your website or wherever your product is sold,” he said. 

Through his company, Inventor Smart, Fried helps entrepreneurs turn their idea into reality, from securing patent or trademark protection and licensing deals to barcoding, packaging and marketing. 

“If people have one product, it’s difficult – but not impossible – to get it into a physical retail store,” Fried said. “Buyers prefer companies with product lines with multiple items, but they’re more willing to work with one product for online sales. Online retailers like QVC.com, Walmart.com, and Lowes.com are always looking for new products – that’s what keeps consumers coming back to them. They look to entrepreneurs and innovators to come out with new products to offer to their customers, and they have really opened the door for inventors to sell online.” 

National Inventor Club member Tony Pagoto is a retired information technology professional from Cutchogue whose career highlights included working on the Apollo 11 moon landing as a Grumman employee. The passionate inventor’s latest product is the Twist Lock Grommet, a device for organizing the wires behind a computer or TV. Pagoto, whose company is named JBL Products for the initials of his three daughters’ names, has a patent for the device, which can be installed without tools and locks into place.

“When you are sitting in your living room having a glass of wine with your spouse, you don’t want to look at wires running up and down the walls,” he said.

Pagoto worked on perfecting the product in his garage for several years, making hundreds of prototypes, first with cardboard, then PVC pipe and metal. He had 3D printed professional prototypes created before making the steel physical mold that would be used in the manufacturing process. “The steel mold cost about $35,000, so before going to that expense, I had to make sure it was perfect,” he said. 

Pagoto chose to market his product through Amazon about two years ago. 

“People use Amazon a lot, so I thought, ‘Let’s put it there and see what happens,’” he said. 

What happened was that sales have exceeded Pagoto’s wildest dreams, helped by dozens of 5-star customer reviews. The product was also added to Walmart.com, and Pagoto is now focused on scaling the business. 

Like Pagoto, East End resident Amanda Fennell filed for a patent for her invention, the ColorShield Art Kit. Fennell has a master’s degree in art therapy and taught art before staying home to raise her children. 

Fennell, whose company is called The Art Nanny, likened the ColorShield concept to fastening blue tape along the borders before painting a wall so the paint stays within the boundary. The art kit comes with ColorShield shapes such as a polar bear, butterfly, or lighthouse, which can be affixed to the paper and then peeled off after the child colors or paints a background. The artist can then add details to the distinct shape to create art featuring a recognizable focal item. 

From her time as a teacher, Fennell knew that oftentimes, the paintings and drawings that kids create in school wind up in a pile. 

“I wanted to offer one project from start to finish, so my product came with all the materials and a glass frame,” she said. “Kids build the ColorShield in the frame, and then take it home, where it can be hung on a wall.”

The ColorShield was a hit at local fairs and the public library in Southampton, where Fennell began giving ColorShield classes. Soon word spread and other libraries started calling.  

But then the pandemic struck and, like other entrepreneurs, Fennell had to adjust. She created art kits for the libraries to give kids to take home. The glass frames wouldn’t work, so she incorporated a black mat background instead. Libraries in Suffolk and now Nassau County have been ordering the kits, which include a QR code for logging on to her website for a tutorial.

“It’s like I got on a train and it took off,” Fennell said of her business. “And it’s not stopping.” 

For more business coverage visit longislandpress.com/category/business

Sign up for Long Island Press’ email newsletters here. Sign up for home delivery of Long Island Press here. Sign up for discounts by becoming a Long Island Press community partner here.

Who Makes The Best Veggie Burger on Long Island?

veggie burger
Getty Images

Meat lovers aren’t the only foodies that enjoy a delicious burger. Veggie burgers are the perfect substitute for anyone hungry for a burger, but who makes the best veggie burger on Long Island?

Long Islanders voted Batata Cafe the Best Veggie Burger on Long Island in the 2021 Bethpage Best of Long Island contest!

Who said healthy food isn’t tasty? If you visit Batata Cafe in Northport, you’ll be happy to find a menu full of options that aren’t just good for you, they’re also quite delicious.

Batata Cafe is considered the place for all your vegan and vegetarian needs in Suffolk. Its extensive menu of breakfast, lunch and dinner includes freshly baked muffins, hearty soups, ACAI bowls and vegan ice creams. But a fan favorites is the Veggie Burger, made with chunky vegetable patty, tomato, avocado, alfalfa sprouts and house-made chipotle mayo. The cafe prides itself on preparing meals specifically for its guests and providing many plant-based and gluten free menu items, with ingredients like free range, antibiotic free chicken and organic, soy free eggs.

Be sure to check out its website to see the full menu!

The national winner of the 2021 Bethpage Best of Long Island veggie burger category was Bareburger, which specializes in using organic, fresh ingredients in all of its dishes in order to ensure that every customer receives an absolutely delicious meal bursting with flavor.

Its produce is free of GMOs and pesticides, its breads are all-natural, and its sauces are gluten-free. One of Bareburger’s famous menu items is its veggie burger, a great option for vegetarians who still crave the taste of a traditional burger now and then, and for those who would like to try this spin on an iconic, American dish. Who knew eating healthy could be this enjoyable?!

Batata Cafe is located at 847 Fort Salonga Rd. in Northport. It can be reached at 631-754-4439 or batatacafe.com

Bareburger has multiple locations that can be found at bareburger.com

To find all the other 2021 Bethpage Best of Long Island contest winners, visit bestoflongisland.com Vote for your favorite businesses and people in the 2022 Bethpage Best of Long Island program through Dec. 15.

To read more Best of Long Island Spotlights, visit longislandpress.com/category/boli-spotlight

Sign up for Long Island Press’ email newsletters hereSign up for home delivery of Long Island Press here. Sign up for discounts by becoming a Long Island Press community partner here.