Toku Modern Asian Restaurant
(516) 627-8658, Manhasset
The Miracle Mile has made an impressive name for itself over the years. A collection of international fashion and luxury brands sweep through the North Shore’s Americana Manhasset, but only a few designated eateries call this lavish strip home. Among them is the sleek Toku Modern Asian Restaurant. Well-known restaurateurs Gillis and George Poll integrate sophisticated Asian cuisine in a simple yet modern destination; Toku’s design was created by Bentel & Bentel Architects, designers of The Modern at MoMA. Unique cocktails include the chili passion martini, a mixture of vodka, passion fruit purée and fresh ginger, orange and cranberry juices with a kick of red chili pepper seeds. Toku specializes in an authentic Asian spirit, shochu, made from a variety of grains with a crisp, light taste. Try the spicy wasabi shochu if you’re daring, or Jougo if you’re looking to sate your sweet tooth.
Tantalizing dinner options include a tremendous variety of cold and hot appetizers like octopus carpaccio and steamed sea bass rolls with cabbage, ginger and scallion oil. Creative sushi rolls are made to order with the freshest ingredients. Order the Americana roll, a creation of Maine lobster tail tempura and asparagus rolled with spicy sauce, then settle in by the bar to watch posh clientele gush over the newest fashions picked up next door.
Southampton Social Club
(631) 287-1400, Southampton
For those who gallivant in the Hamptons, the Southampton Social Club is where white linen pants, outdoor cabanas and those high priced beverages come together. The stylish space combines a garden-like atmosphere outside with a country quaint feel indoors. Music bumps in and out while the hottest DJs spin, allowing free spirits to let loose wherever they find space. One of the newer “it” lounges to hit the East End is ready when you are. Grab your friends, reserve a cabana under the stars and toast to another kick-ass summer.
Boat Basin Café
(212) 496-5542, NYC
Despite its landmarks, tourist attractions and entertainment, densely populated Manhattan lays low in the sizzling summer months. Cool off with the Hudson River breeze at the Boat Basin Café, a sprawling casual restaurant on the Upper West Side. Hidden from the bustling thoroughfares, patrons must walk beneath an arched roadway toward the water. The perfect pit stop for a clear day, this outdoor venue matches casual dining with stunning views. This laid back waterfront spot specializes in frozen drinks, refreshing beers and not-so-uptight cocktails. Boat Basin’s festive environment brings all age groups together, and even four-legged friends. Chow down on burgers and sandwiches while taking advantage of a location that’s hard to beat.
Photo of Southampton Social Club by Tom Fitzgerald