The newly named Old Fields Tavern in Setauket has undergone a transformation.
Motivating the changes are an intention to cater to a broader clientele serving more standard fare. Barbecue lovers don’t be sad, their classic barbecue dishes will remain on the menu.
“We are the new neighborhood spot,” said co-owner David Tunney.
Tunney discussed the move with GreaterPortJeff, saying that between the restaurants in Old Fields restaurant in Port Jefferson and Del Fuego in Saint James, there isn’t a good tavern for families to come enjoy a meal on Route 25A.
“It’s more for everybody,” Tunney said of the rebrand.
In January 2020, Tunney and his partners opened Old Fields Barbecue at 130 Old Town Road in Setauket. They envisioned a barbecue joint like the ones they visited in Nashville and Austin, Texas, while figuring out how they do it right.
Although barbecue is still there at Old Fields Tavern, the counter service concept is gone.
The menu has some holdovers, including the burnt end brisket sandwich on a Hawaiian roll with coleslaw ($17.95), or the Texas style barbecue pulled pork ($13.95), brisket ($17.95), and baby back ribs ($19.95) served with coleslaw and a pickle. They have all the sides to choose from, and they still have their cornbread with honey butter and jam ($8.95).
Tuney explained that barbecue isn’t something that people on Long Island will necessarily go back to over and over like they do Italian, sushi or burgers, so they decided to expand the menu.
“We diversified a little bit,” Tunney said. “We reacted to the customers.”
They’ve added more American fare, such as the spinach and artichoke dip appetizer served with everything bagel chips ($13.95) and the bacon burger with house smoked bacon and onion jam and cheddar topped with bourbon sauce ($17.95). There’s also the blackened mahi sandwich with spicy mayo and coleslaw ($17.95).
The menu isn’t the only part of the restaurant that got a redo. There’s the new name and sign out front and they’ve changed the decor from the total barbecue experience. Tunney said they did a quick redo of the interior with new artwork on the walls and new wood floors.
“We’ve elevated the vibe a little bit,” he said.