Saltaire Oyster Bar and Fish House
Saltaire's main dining room exudes a laid-back elegance.
The less-than-two-year-old restaurant was supposed to be a little clam shack in Westchester someplace, at least that’s what owner Les Barnes was envisioning. Then, a 100-year-old historic grain warehouse came available, and what Port Chester got instead was a grand restaurant that’s seriously dedicated to seafood. Barnes, also proprietor of London Lennie’s in Queens, started following his father around Fulton Fish Market when he was 5. While he doesn’t personally go to the Fulton Market every morning anymore, he does have a representative there. The result is a regular revival of what’s fresh, plus a great number of standards.
Every day there are 12 oysters on the menu, displayed prominently behind the bar. Mussels — from a family in Maine growing them Holland-style — come served in pots four ways: with saffron and cream, lemon and leeks, galangal and lemon grass, or espagnol, with smoked chorizo. Even the pots are from Holland. There’s a live scallop crudo, and the outstanding gravlax is made in-house. Soft-shell crab are on the menu in season, and the one day they managed to snag a white sturgeon from British Columbia, it was gone within the night. There’s swordfish and snapper, seafood Bolognese with house-made shrimp and mushroom ragu, and skate wing, too.
Catch This: A new, prix-fixe three-course Saltaire Supper on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday offers the chance to sample across the seafood menu.