Hold onto your sombreros taco fans. Babylon sensation Swell Taco is making its way to downtown Patchogue this spring. The joint known for its top-notch Mexican food, surf-themed aesthetics and casual vibe will be opening a second location in the space of the former Main St. Italian Bistro.
“We have been contemplating moving or opening up in other areas,” said owner Brooke Jankow. “Patchogue just felt like the perfect next step because it is an up-and-coming town with a similar community vibe to Babylon.”
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Jankow and brother Steve Zoerner, co-owners of the Babylon restaurant, are partnering with the general manager from that location, Tiffany Alvarez.
“One of the biggest motivating factors in expanding was to give our employees more opportunities. Tiffany [waitress-turned-general manager] and most of our staff actually have been with us since the very beginning. It’s awesome to be able to generate possibilities for our Swell Taco family.”
Guests can check their worries at the door because unlike the Babylon location, there will be enough space for a full bar with an extensive margarita and sangria menu. The recipes are still being finalized, but talks of infused tequilas are in the works.
“The original margarita recipe we use only has a couple of ingredients. We are trying to stay true to that by adding different flavors to them in a very fresh and organic way.”
Patchogue Swell Taco plans to keep the party going, expanding hours to adapt with the hopping nightlife. The exact times have yet to be determined but they will be more late night than the usual 9pm/10pm closings. Plus, they will be open on Sundays, another divergence from the Babylon location.
“We never really evolved that way in Babylon because we weren’t directly on Main Street. But we are adapting to the [Patchogue] scene that’s out there while still offering our relaxing vibe for people to have a good time with some good food and drinks.”
As far as food goes, diners can expect the raved-about spicy shrimp tacos, grilled chicken tacos and loaded burritos to taste the same.
But this time around they can be enjoyed in what is essentially an outdoor backyard. Compared to the outdoor patio with a few tables in Babylon, the space in Patchogue has blueprints for an area that will project surf videos onto a wall and house a fire pit once the Swell family gets settled in.
“On a regular basis we have families come in from Sayville, Bluepoint and Riverhead…Now we can be out here for the other end of our core customers.”