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There is a selection of flatbreads on the happy hour menu. (Courtesy photo)

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Joseph and Tammy Aracri were hoping to bring something different to Shoreham when they opened the sophisticated, yet approachable 63-seat restaurant Eat + Drink earlier this year.

The longtime Shoreham residents frequently found themselves traveling outside their zip code when they were looking for quality food and cocktails in a casual environment at a reasonable price point. The idea for the 3,000-square-foot restaurant was born out of the Aracris desire to have good food, good drinks and good atmosphere closer to home. The simple, straight forward concept is reflected in the name: Eat + Drink.

“We live in this town and there weren’t a lot of options when we wanted to go out to eat,” Joseph said. “We thought the community would also enjoy something closer to home that wasn’t a pizza place or a traditional sports bar with fried food.”

Joseph — who previously owned Oceans 5 Seafood Market & Eatery on 25A in Shoreham — knew the time was right to make the restaurant a reality earlier this year. He closed Oceans 5 and opened Eat + Drink in the same location six weeks later after extensive renovations.

In addition to the craft cocktails, the bar also offers a select of wine and draft beers. (Courtesy photo)

Tammy was tasked with designing the space. The rustic meets modern aesthetic comes to life with warm wood accents juxtaposed with metal fixtures. The restaurant also has a non-traditional lounge space with oversized chairs, couches and a large coffee table that has been a requested gathering spot for guests looking to split Eat + Drink’s signature small plates and craft cocktails with friends.

“Quality is what we are going for,” said manager Kyle Mosley. “We keep it simple. It would be hard to come in and not find something on the menu. We have something for everyone.”

The Aracris source their ingredients locally when possible and have a selection of gluten-free and vegetarian dishes. All the sauces are made in-house too. The small plate menu includes everything from tacos to mussels to pizzettas (think: flatbreads) to the popular “barely touched tuna” with wasabi fusion and teriyaki sauces.

For someone with a hearty appetite, the menu also has several burger and seafood choices as well as steaks, salads and pastas. The staff works together to create the menu. Mosley recently created the “kitchen sink” burger, an 8 oz. angus burger topped with fried chicken tenders, applewood smoked bacon, cheddar cheese, crispy fried onions, spicy mayo and barbecue sauce on a brioche bun — it is an instant favorite, he said.

Eat is only one half of the equation.

“We pride ourselves on our craft cocktails,” Joseph said. “We only use the highest quality ingredients and we make all the syrups in-house.”

Eat + Drink is open six days a week (closed Mondays) and is located in the Shoreham Plaza at 99 Route 25A in Shoreham.

Off the Fork is a new feature on people, places and things that interest us outside of the North Fork. This week’s posts were made possible by Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center.