Deborah (center) with her 'A' Team
Q: The Greenporter Hotel is participating in this weekend’s Taste the North Fork, right? What are you offering?
A: We are offering a two-night stay and delicious wine dinner at American Beech, a homemade breakfast buffet in the hotel restaurant, a pop up tasting room for Raphael Vineyards, and of course, we’re an easy walk from the Greenport Southold Bus Loop.
A: Yes! People who purchased our package have wine tickets included but anyone can come by and purchase wine and nibbles.
Saturday, from 2-5 pm. Raphael Vineyards is popping up in our restaurant and will be pouring wines and we will be offering legacy appetizers by Cuvée.
Oysters Cuvée: Dusted in gluten-free coating, flash fried, served on a bed of sautéed spinach and covered in our signature champagne sauce.
We thought this would be great to offer our guests and other visitors who travel to the North Fork via Hampton Jitney or LIRR--a winery experience right in the Village! Greenport Harbor Brewery is walkable, and Kontokosta can be biked to, but a few glasses of wine along with inclement weather can make that difficult for some. So it’s special that Saturday afternoon people who come here without a car can enjoy the winery tasting room experience in walkable downtown Greenport.
And if they want to head from here to Osprey’s Dominion, or Sannino, or any of the other participating wineries, they can just stroll from here to the Greenport train station/Hampton Jitney stop and catch the shuttle.
Q: You said you’ll offer Cuvée appetizers as part of the Raphael tasting room pop up. What are those?
A: We used to run an on-site restaurant, called Cuvée, here at the Greenporter. We operated the restaurant very successfully for 15 years—we were featured in Food and Wine and Wine Spectator Magazine along with local publications and had the most special clientele. But two years ago we closed the restaurant so that I could focus on my husband's battle with cancer.
Although the restaurant is closed, The Greenporter maintains an herb garden for its breakfasts.
Although the restaurant is closed, there are so many restaurants in this foodie town. When we opened in 2000, there were no downtown restaurants except Claudio’s and some pubs. That made Cuvée really important but since then, Greenport has developed a vibrant dining scene. Nowadays we have many places to send our hotel guests. But we still offer breakfast service for our guests and also host private events like rehearsal dinners and corporate events.
Also part of the chef's garden
This weekend we will open Cuvée in conjunction with Raphael Vineyards for Taste the North Fork spring getaway. We will be serving our most popular Cuvée dishes like our crispy Oysters Cuvée, homemade duck pâté, steak au poivre and more. We will serve all of these in appetizer portions ranging from $4 to $14.
Q: Sounds like those appetizers will be a treat. How did you come to the North Fork?
A: My husband and I went to a wedding in Jamesport in late September of 1999—a college buddy—and we waited to the last minute to find a place to stay. When we couldn’t find one, we wondered; what’s going on in September that there wouldn't be a single empty room in the Fall.
My husband is originally from Massachusetts and we found the North Fork to have the same feel as thenrustic, New England fishing villages in Cape Cod; where my husband and I spent many summers.
So we started looking for a summer house, but didn’t find what we wanted. Then then in 2000 the broker, almost for a joke said, ‘I have a broken down motel I could show you’ and I said ‘sure,’ mostly just out of curiosity. But when I saw it I realized what it could be, so we bid on it.
Q: What was the Greenporter when you bought it in 2000? What have you turned it into?
A: When I bought it, the Greenporter was a 15 room motel with parking in front of your door. We bought two adjacent lots, added a swimming pool, Jacuzzi, renovated the original wing and built and restaurant and terrace.
In an effort to be an environmentally responsible business, we worked hard to use sustainable and recycled materials while building. The Greenporter Hotel has had Green Hotels certification for the last decade and we have a platinum-level Green leaders designation by Trip Advisor.
If you visit our website, you can click on "how we are green" to see all our practices. Just to mention a few--we make almost all food on site, so we use very little packaging; everything is repurposed—our 100% cotton linens become rags as opposed to paper towels, our cooking oil is recycled for bio fuel and our grounds and pool are filled with well water. All our lights are LEDs, we have an on site garden for herbs and vegetables, we make our own cleaning solution for floors and surfaces—the list goes on.
Q: Wow, you weren’t kidding when you said The Greenporter was an eco-friendly, green hotel. Do your guests care?
A: Yes, they care a lot. The real story of Greenport is that people come to the North Fork for very different reasons than their visits to the South Fork. They’re not looking to check in to the scene, they’re looking to check out of the scene and into nature.
They’re very interested in the outdoors, their food sources, farms, vineyards. They buy cheese, fruits and vegetables. They really know their food, and they’re very worried about their environment. They go fishing, clamming, biking, berry picking.
North Fork visitors want sustainability, low carbon footprint. At least 30% of our customers don’t come with a car. It’s all extremely connected.
I think that’s a very different profile for why people visit other places. Taste the North Fork is all about that.