In the coming months, as we stumble out of the woods and into the blinding daylight of mid-summer, we will all learn, as a nation, what it means to eat at restaurants again. It’s still something we’re learning, as the pandemic threatens us at every turn. What will dining look like? How will we need to reform our expectations, our wants, our needs? It will be the job of us, as consumers, to change our vision, but it will also be the job of restaurateurs to adapt what it means to run a restaurant. And that job begins now, as we are still righting the ship.
In Oakdale, View, the reincarnation of the 23-year-old Riverview Restaurant, opened on Memorial Day Weekend as a slightly different version of itself, a reminder that we are in a moment of flux and of growth. Once a more formal, sit-down restaurant, View is now View’s Lobster Shack, offering a more casual menu, as well as boat kits, curbside pickup, takeout, and delivery. Orders can be placed online at www.viewoakdale.com.
View’s Lobster Shack has a raw bar, in case you were wondering, and this summer they are serving up littleneck clams, local oysters, jumbo shrimp cocktail, yellowfin tuna tartare, and chilled Maine lobster. For hot appetizers, some menu items include Long Island baked clams with applewood-smoked bacon and lemon, oysters Rockefeller with spinach and Pernod, fried clam strips with tartar sauce, popcorn shrimp with spicy remoulade, and crispy Thai calamari with a sweet chili glaze. There is also, of course, a Manhattan clam chowder, as well as a Maine lobster bisque.
Larger plates remain summer playful: Baja fish tacos made from local cod and served with pico de gallo and guacamole; bang bang shrimp tempura with a red cabbage and cilantro slaw; grilled mahi mahi with mango salsa; Peking duck tacos with Hoisin sauce; a New England-style lobster roll served in a buttered roll; crispy fish sliders with tartar sauce; a sliced steal sandwich made from filet mignon and topped with caramelized Vidalia onions; and a shack burger, with house-made pickles, Vermont cheddar, and bacon, atop a brioche bun.
There are more formal entrees, too, like fish and chips, seared yellowfin tuna, steamed Maine lobster, filet mignon, and a lobster bake. And if your boat is nearby, you can get a boat kit to go: the Manhattan Clam Chowder Kit, Long Island Baked Clam Kit, Taco Kit, and Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail Platter are all great ways to feed your hungry passengers. But don’t forget the toast. If View’s epic Rum Punch isn’t your speed, you can opt, instead, for a refreshing class of frosé. Catch sunset on your boat, or standing outside. Summer is different, but we’ll muddle through somehow.