A few years back, my older sister Melissa and I decided to embark on a journey that few, at the time, dared to challenge: becoming foodies. At the time, the term "foodie" was new. We always loved food, and took pictures of what we were eating, but rarely did do anything special with those pictures. In mid-2015, we created a food Instagram, The Hungry Games, and eventually she took over the account completely. Recently, though, I joined her for a tasting of a new restaurant in our area, Bucket List, and this one should definitely be at the top of yours.   

When she invited me, I really had no idea what to expect. I figured they would give us a menu, and we would order normally, but boy was I wrong. Her advice to me before we walked in was, "slow and steady wins the race." Take small bites of everything, and then go back for seconds on favorites. She said, "It was unique in that I don't know that I've ever attended a tasting where it was only me and a guest, and we were served as though we were a small army. Group tastings tend to feature lots of different dishes for everyone to share, but Bucket List made sure the two of us got to try the whole menu." 

Our meal was divided into four courses, each more extravagant than the previous. I could read the menu over and over, but nothing would prepare me for the food I was about to consume. Here are five reasons you need to try Bucket List next time you visit Long Island!

1) Putting the "freak" in Freakshakes.

Samantha Epstein

The milkshake I ordered was called "The Grand Slam." 

It was a chocolate shake in a caramel popcorn dipped glass. It was then topped with whipped cream, caramel sauce, and Reese's Pieces, and also featured a pretzel rod and an ice cream cone. It was a beautiful marriage between sweet and salty flavors. Let's just say if you were trying to bring a boy to your yard with a milkshake, this would be your best shot.

Samantha Epstein

My sister, on the other hand, went for the colorful option: "The Sweet Shoppe." This sugary delight was a vanilla shake with Fruity Pebbles around the rim, and was topped with whipped cream and Fruit Loops. It was then garnished with a swirly lollipop, rock candy pop and cotton candy. In other words, this sweet treat was a whole group of cavities waiting to happen. Though tasty, this shake was the literal definition of a sweet tooth. 

2) Bringing a new spin to the classic amusement park ride.

One of the appetizers we tried was called the "Ferris Wheel Sampler." Essentially, it was a group of five carnival eats, placed into a Ferris wheel. The five samplers included funnel cake fries, fried cornbread, fried pickles, popcorn chicken, and onion rings. These five appetizers were all so different, and as a result, paired together great. On one hand, you had sweet flavors, like the funnel cake fries, while on the other, you had sour flavors, like the fried pickles. It was the perfect medley of diverse flavors.

3) Fried chicken isn't just for Kentucky anymore.

Samantha Epstein

Our second course was probably my favorite. I've always loved fried chicken, this dish really took my love to the next-level. Prior to trying it here, I had never had chicken and waffles. Afterwards, though, I can definitely see what the hype is all about. The combination of the light and fluffy waffle with the crunchy chicken does not compare to any other food combinations. There is nothing that can top the sweet after-taste of the maple syrup.

4) Speaking of chicken...

Samantha Epstein

Just when you thought the chicken couldn't get more insane, you get to the actual menu. The mixture of the three main ingredients-- chicken, mac and cheese, and a brioche bun-- are all distinct flavors on their own, but together make a masterpiece. The chicken has a perfect crunch from the crust, while the mac and cheese is smooth and rich, all blended together with the sweet taste of the bun. Three words: per-fec-tion.

5) Dinner would be nothing without dessert.

Samantha Epstein

Last but not least, what would dinner be without dessert? In addition to the milkshakes that many will order at the beginning of the meal, one simply can't go without a sundae at the end. The "Love Ya to Pieces" sundae encompassed all things peanut butter. It had a base of chocolate ice cream and was topped with whipped cream, chocolate sauce, peanut butter sauce, chocolate sprinkles and Reese's pieces. It was even finished off with a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup. To say this sundae is a Reese's lover's dream would be an understatement.

Final Thoughts

Bucket List is a great pick for dinner for groups of all sizes and ages, whether you have a family reunion or a girls' night out, Bucket List should be your go-to spot. However, be prepared for leftovers. You'll be eating for days.