Monday, July 4, 2011

The View

3 Consuelo Place, Oakdale, NY 11769, 631-589-2694 www.viewoakdale.com

The View

Dinner at The View was a confusing experience, filled with conundrums. Reservations at a waterfront restaurant on Long Island on a summer holiday weekend should be hard to come by but we had no trouble despite a late decision to dine here.

The View
The photos on the web site and valet parking, not to mention the menu prices, told us to expect an elegant setting and we dressed accordingly. And, in fact, the place is as beautiful in person as in the photos. But we arrived to servers dressed in khakis, blue polo shirts and tan sneakers and other diners sporting shorts, jeans and flip-flops.

The View
It began to make sense when we were handed a large prix fixe menu that included all but the most extravagant of the a la carte dishes. In fact, we could have our appetizer, entrée and dessert for less than the cost of of most entrées on the main menu.

The View
The View does have a specialty cocktail menu (we LOVE that) and we chose the wonderful sounding Fire Islander cocktail featuring Finlandia mango fusion vodka, Bacardi rock coconut, pomegranate and pineapple juice with a splash of grenadine and served in a glass rimmed with raspberry sugar. But what we got tasted more like punch or a kiddie cocktail and $10 is a lot to pay for fruit juice.

The View
But our disappointment ended with the arrival of bread and a dish of delectable olive oil, so good that we asked for the name of the brand.










The View
Shredded Iceberg Salad
The shredded iceberg salads were chopped versions of a classic wedge and were perfectly dressed and delicious with gorgonzola cheese, applewood smoked bacon, red onion and tomato in a red wine vinaigrette.









The View
Cedar Roasted Atlantic Salmon
The cedar roasted Atlantic salmon with maiitake mushrooms, bok choy and snow pea shoots in a shiitake ginger broth was excellent if a bit over-salted.











The View
Pappardelle Bolognese
But the star of the evening was the Pappardelle Bolognese. This was a dish of expertly prepared pasta with a rich, creamy, well-balanced sauce of veal, beef and pork with plum tomatoes and pecorino romano, flecked with fresh basil and finished with dollop of fresh ricotta cheese.







The View
Wild Berry Cheesecake
For our prix fixe desserts we chose the wild berry cheesecake with a graham cracker crust and wild berry compote. Delicious.

In addition to the new American style menu, there is also a sushi option with a lone, lonely looking sushi chef off to the side. Fresh seafood on Long Island we understand but this was an odd mix of cuisines.

All of the servers were young and appeared to be on summer school break. They were efficient but could do with some instruction on smiling. Our own waiter did look a bit zoned out and his movements seemed careful and deliberate. Lines of cocaine in the back room or a doctor's prescription that left him dazed, we'll never know.

We do have one bone to pick with the management. That particular evening they were hosting two parties - a 60th birthday party and some sort of bridal rehearsal.  The high ceilings in the room amplify sound and the two large tables were very noisy. The inside dining room does have a semi private space that would have been a better choice for these groups instead of the main dining room where the din disturbed the regular diners.

Despite the lovely setting, delicious food and reasonable prices, the dining room remained half empty so we see why they are trying to lure diners with the low cost, prix fixe food. But the decor really is beautiful with a slightly nautical theme, there is a large separate bar area if you just want cocktails and revelry and the outdoor seating area is generous. Outside the grounds are well-tended with lots of flowers and it's delightful to stroll around their dock and admire the boats moored there. Although we would have preferred a more elegant dining experience, we really did enjoy the meal and, at these low prices, we'll probably return.

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