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Peter Gianotti

Peter M. Gianotti is Newsday's restaurant critic and wine-and-spirits columnist. He's the author of "A Guide to Long Island Wine Country," "Newsday's Guide to the Wines of Long Island," "Dining Out with Newsday" and co-author of "Newsday's Long Island Restaurant Guide" and "Eats NYC." Before reviewing restaurants, Gianotti was a Washington correspondent, economics writer, book critic and New York City reporter. Gianotti received his master's degree from Columbia University, where he also was a Bagehot Fellow; and his bachelor's degree from Fordham University, where he has taught journalism. He was born in Brooklyn, raised in Queens and lives on Long Island.

J. Michaels in Oyster Bay closed permanently

J. Michaels Tuscan Steakhouse, Northport: Ranking in the

(Credit: Barbara Alper)

Plans to reopen J. Michaels Tuscan Steakhouse in Oyster Bay have been shelved. The restaurant has closed permanently.

Former co-owner and chef Vincent P. Michaels said the expected makeover, turning the Oyster Bay spot into an Italian restaurant, won't happen. The future of the site, best remembered for the Mill River Inn, s uncertain.

The original J. Michaels Tuscan Steakhouse is open...

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All-star chef Heather West exits Schafer's in Port Jefferson

Schaefer's chef Heather West.

Heather West, one of Newsday's all-star chefs for 2014, has left Schafer's in Port Jefferson.

West cited "medical issues" for her departure from the restaurant, adding that she currently is "doing private work."

The former executive chef was the Season 2 winner in Gordon Ramsay's "Hell's Kitchen" TV-show competition.

Schafer's received a one-and-one-half star rating in Newsday...

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Day-of-the-Dead specials at Besito in Huntington, Roslyn

Besito in Huntington

(Credit: Newsday/Bill Davis)

The two Besito Mexican restaurants will celebrate the Day of the Dead with specials on the plate and special effects, too. And they'll do it for two days.

The Huntington and Roslyn spots plan to offer ceviche de jaiba, or citrus-marinated jumbo lump crab with jalapenos, garnished with tortillas and plantain chips; and enchilada de res, soft corn tortillas packed with braised short rib in chipotle-cream...

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Perfecto Mundo in Commack to close after LI Restaurant Week

Perfecto Mundo (or Perfect World) in Commack specializes

(Credit: Heather Walsh)

Perfecto Mundo, the three-star Latin-fusion restaurant in Commack, is to close  Nov. 10.

It will stay open for Long Island Restaurant Week, which starts Nov. 2.

In an email to customers last night, owner Liz Keschl said: "It is with great sadness, and much inner conflict, that I announce today  that we will be closing our doors on Monday, November 10th."

Keschl added,...

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The Arden in Port Jefferson: First bites

Duck tacos are served at The Arden in

(Credit: Newsday / Peter M. Gianotti)

You probably have attended quieter riots.

The Arden, which specializes in small plates,  "vibe dining," "ultra lounge" activities, and amped-up music, is situated above Starbucks on Main Street in Port Jefferson. If you don't spot it, come the weekend, you'll hear it.

Stylish in a carefully orchestrated way, The Arden has a downtown look, with reclaimed wood, banquettes, TVs tuned...

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Cafe Testarossa in Syosset: First bites

Meatball sliders are flavorful at Cafe Testarossa in

(Credit: Jeremy Bales)

Actually, this should be more like the 101st bite.

I first visited Cafe Testarossa in 1988. It was very good. And, over the years, the restaurant named for the great marque of Maranello has zoomed along. There have been some hints of  Emilia-Romagna, but Billy Sansone's establishment usually  revved up in its own way.

Now, it's at full throttle, with Italian and New American...

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brook23 in Lynbrook: First bites

Lobster salad sliders are served at brook23 in

(Credit: Newsday / Peter M. Gianotti)

Gastropubs are pouring it on in Nassau and Suffolk, and brook23 bar + kitchen in Lynbrook is a sudsy, sporty addition to the show.

The casual spot has enough TVs tuned to sports to keep you up to date on any scores. You may be focused more on the food and beverages, which often are very good.

The kitchen sends out tasty slider-size lobster rolls and an especially flavorful "crispy double...

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Grotta di Fuoco in Long Beach: First bites

Fettuccine carbonara is served at Grotta di Fuoco

(Credit: Newsday / Peter M. Gianotti)

Grotta di Fuoco is firing up dining out in Long Beach.

Go down the industrial metal steps and you're in a bustling, lively, sub-street space that could have been exported from Williamsburg or another hot quarter of Brooklyn. And the lively, rustic Italian food is a welcome addition to West Beech Street.

Try a wood-fired pizza capped with eggplant, fennel, pecorino cheese, arugula and...

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Chef exits Gurney's in Montauk

The refurbished dining room is a refreshing highlight

(Credit: Gordon M. Grant)

Seth Levine no longer is the executive chef at Gurney's Montauk Resort & Seawater Spa. Jennifer Oz LeRoy also has departed as food and beverage director.

They were brought in with much fanfare earlier this year as the landmark resort, formerly Gurney's Inn,  continues to undergo a major overhaul under new management. Sucessors to Levine and LeRoy have not been named.

A spokeswoman...

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Jamesport Manor Inn's $29 fixed-price dinner

The Jamesport Manor Inn is tucked away on

(Credit: Kirsten Luce)

If you're headed out to the North Fork for a festival or a wine tour, know that the Jamesport Manor Inn is offering a $29 fixed-price "fall harvest" dinner on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Appetizer choices may include a roasted beet salad with bacon, goat cheese, orange and roasted pistachios; or a mixed greens with shaved Parmesan cheese.

Main dishes...

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