On Suffolk County’s North Shore sits Setauket, which encompasses the hamlets of Setauket and East Setauket. Setauket is often associated with nearby Stony Brook, as many of its businesses cater to Stony Brook University students. The land that would later become Setauket was purchased in 1655 by English migrants, and it was the first settlement in the Town of Brookhaven. Setauket took its name from the Setalcott Indians who lived on the land prior to colonization, but it was temporarily renamed Ashford by Captain John Scott. The Revolutionary War Battle of Setauket saw the British defeat the Continental Army, and the current Setauket Presbyterian Church now sits on the site of Loyalist fortifications. Setauket was also the base of the Culper Ring, a Revolutionary War spy ring led by Setauket resident Benjamin Tallmadge that alerted George Washington about British plots. Following the war, Setauket acted as a major shipbuilding center, including ships like the Wanderer which served in the Union navy as the USS Wanderer. Setauket soon after became a resort town after the LIRR was built in 1873, and with the philanthropy of philanthropist Ward Melville, the area developed even further, especially after the construction of Stony Brook University.
Setauket is known for historic sites like the Thompson House, built in 1709, and the Setauket Presbyterian Church and Burial Ground, which houses the remains of Tallmadge and fellow Culper Ring leader Abraham Woodhull. Two other sites on the NRHP include Caroline Church, originally constructed in 1729, and Bethel Christian Avenue Historic District, an African-American neighborhood built around the Bethel AME Church. The Frank Melville Park is named in honor of Ward Melville’s father and contains sites like the Satterly Barn, built in the early 1700s, and “Patriot’s rock,” once a meeting place of the Setalcott Indians. Other notable parks in Setauket include East Setauket Pond Park, Laurel Ridge Setauket Woods Nature Preserve, and California Park. Setauket is also home to the Three Village Historical Society as well as the Sherwood-Jayne House, built around 1730 in East Setauket.
Setauket offers a selection of along its Main Street and NY-25A, including SE-Port Deli, serving classic sandwiches and salads, and Ichi Sushi & Ramen, offering traditional Japanese fare like Tonkotsu ramen and classic rolls. Also along NY-25A is Bliss, a modern Italian-American eatery, known for dishes like chicken and chorizo paella and ricotta stuffed shells. Along Main Street is classic Italian restaurant Mario’s as well as Japanese and Asian Fusion restaurant Tai Show North, as well as Indian favorite The Curry Club.