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Sachem Bites Nearby: Casa Campestre

Traditional Colombian food for lunch or dinner.

Diners looking for a change of pace to their standard restaurant circuit should check out Casa Campestre, a recently-opened Colombian restaurant serving up traditional dishes featuring healthy portions and plenty of options.

Décor: Casa Campestre features a modest dining room with a number of tables and chairs capable of seating upwards of 30 different dinner parties. Off-white walls are accented by rich brown tones, and there are some interesting decorations. My table was accompanied by a stuffed rooster that was perched high above our heads. Lighting is bright but not overwhelming, and the dining room is separated into different levels, allowing for some variation in seating.

Drinks: A soda will run you $1.60, iced tea is $2.25, and specialty Colombian soda is $1.95. There are also a number of delicious juices available that you’ll have difficulty finding elsewhere, like passion fruit ($3.75), raspberry ($3.75) and sour sop ($3.75). A coffee for after dinner is $1.75, hot chocolate is $2.45 and tasty sugar cane water is $2.25. (Please note that at the time of this article’s creation, Casa Campestre did not currently possess a liquor license)

Appetizers: Start out simple with one of Casa Campestre’s many corn cake combos, like Corn Cake with Cheese ($3.95), a fluffy, cheesy corn cake that can be drizzled with the fiery house salsa, creating a strong opening to your meal, or Sausage with Corn Cake ($3.95), a spicy chorizo mixed with corn cake. You can also order up Breaded Shrimp ($8.95), assorted Meat Pies ($4.25) and the house Ceviche ($8.95).

Entrees: Begin with one of four salads offered at Casa Campestre, such as mixed Colombian salad with breaded chicken ($8.95), grilled chicken ($8.95), or shrimp ($9.95).

Meat-eaters rejoice, because Casa Campestre is sure to have something to fill your stomach. For steak and pork, you have plenty of options, such as juicy Grilled Skirt Steak ($15.95) served with salad and French fries, Breaded Steak ($13.45) served with salad, sweet plantain, rice and beans, and Grilled Pork Loin ($13.45) served with mixed vegetables and mashed potatoes.

For the poultry-centered diner, Casa Campestre offers full and half chickens ($9.95 and $4.95, respectively), a Chicken Platter ($10.95) featuring a ¼ chicken, French fries, rice, beans and chicken soup, and Grilled Chicken Breast Au Gratin ($11.95), a juicy chicken breast served with salad and French fries.

If seafood is more your speed, grab the stunning Fried Whole Red Snapper ($18.95) an epic dish served with salad, rice and fried plantain, the house Seafood Casserole ($19.95) featuring many of Casa Campestre’s best cuts of fish and shellfish served with white rice, and Shrimp in Garlic Sauce ($14.95) with rice and fried plantains.

Children’s Menu: Fried Hot Dogs and French Fries ($6.95), Chicken Fingers ($7.95), and Chicken & Rice ($7.95) are the options for younger diners.

Desserts: Ice Cream of a variety of flavors is $3.95, cheese cake is $4.75, tasty caramel flan is $3.95, three milk custard is $3.95, and figs with cheese and caramel rounds out the dessert menu at $4.45.

Signature Dish: The positively monolithic Casa Campestre Platter ($14.95) stands out among all other dishes. Served with a juicy ¼ chicken, tender grilled steak, salad, incredible sweet plantain, rice and beans, you may very well end up overwhelmed by the sheer variety on your plate. Also included is a thick cut of deep fried pork skin. If you survive this monster meal, give yourself a pat on the back and get prepped for dessert.

Service: Service was fast and friendly. Our table was consistently checked on to make sure all was well. Food was delivered is short order and the gaps between courses gave plenty of time to fit in healthy conversation.

Address: 846 Portion Road, Ronkonkoma

Telephone: 631-580-1180

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