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The dish on Long Island's restaurant and food scene

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Joan Reminick

In an ongoing search to find Long Island’s best restaurant values, restaurant critic Joan Reminick has plowed through more pad thai, penne ala vodka and pulled pork than she cares to admit. Born and raised in Brooklyn, Joan grew up in a happy home whose only shortcomings were culinary. After a childhood of cooked-to-leather steaks, canned peas and Ore Ida fries, she made it a personal mission to seek out food that’s fresh, lively and carefully prepared. Married to her teen sweetheart, she received a B.A. from Brooklyn College and an M.S. from Hofstra University and taught English and Humanities in a Long Island high school for several years. When her two children were born, she embarked on a writing career and has had both fiction and nonfiction works published in national magazines. She also edited the Zagat Survey of Long Island Restaurants and wrote the book “Exploring Long Island with Newsday.” In addition to doing weekly “Cheap Eats” restaurant reviews, Joan hunts down restaurant news items and writes restaurant-related articles. These days, her motto is: making Long Island a better place to eat, one blog entry at a time.

Nick's Tuscan Grill, damaged by Sandy, reopens in Mineola

Pizza is served at Nick's Tuscan Grill in

(Credit: Nick's Tuscan Grill)

Nick's Tuscan Grill has relocated from Long Beach to Mineola.

The Long Beach restaurant was severely damaged by superstorm Sandy and never reopened. It takes over the former site of Andiamo on Mineola Boulevard.

But the menu at the new spot will appeal to devotees of the original.

Antipasti include baked clams, fried calamari, eggplant Parmigiana and a selection of cured meats...

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Dining in Port Washington: 5 picks

Rigatoni Bolognese at Pepe Rosso 24 in Port

(Credit: Newsday / Thomas A. Ferrara)

Port Washington is one of Nassau's restaurant hubs, for variety and quantity. Here are five reasons to dine there.

THE PIE AT SALVATORES, 124 Shore Rd.; 516-883-8457

The coal-fired brick-oven pizzas spur pilgrimages. Just order the pie with fresh mozzarella, crushed tomatoes and basil. You can pick toppings, but be a purist. The place also sends out good eggplant Parmigiana, and the...

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Mushroom-themed dinner at Almond in Bridgehampton

Almond's dining room features a grand tin ceiling,

(Credit: Gordon M. Grant)

Mushrooms star in a dinner on April 9 at Almond in Bridgehampton.

It's part of the restaurant's "Artists & Writers Night" series. Andrea Grover, curator of special projects at the Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill; and artist Phil Ross will be the guests.

Chef Jason Weiner's menu includes baby artichoke salad with button mushrooms and house-cured pancetta; polenta raviolini with crisp...

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La Marmite in Williston Park: First bites

At La Marmite in Williston Park, baked clams

(Credit: Newsday / Erica Marcus)

La Marmite, among the last of the "le" and "la" restaurants that long-defined fine dining on Long Island, has entered a new era.

But it's just as appealing as it has been for decades.

Under new ownership and a new chef, the polished continental has been refreshed. Fans of the original, however, shouldn't be worried. The quality is just as high. And the dining room, marked by excellent...

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Closed in New Hyde Park: Fiza Family Diner

Fiza Family Diner is a new Indian-Pakistani-Bangladeshi restaurant

(Credit: Newsday / Erica Marcus)

The Fiza Family Diner in New Hyde Park was a simply decorated spot serving up the flavors of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh at bargain prices. It opened last summer but didn’t last out the year.

The eatery received a two-star rating in November 2013. A dish that exemplified the allure of the place was the achari aloo kati roll — “warm flaky parartha bread cradling a spicy-savory potato filling...

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Fresco Creperie hits the spot in Williston Park

Dessert offerings at Fresco Creperie & Cafe in

(Credit: Newsday / Erica Marcus)

It was 8:30 on Friday night, and I’d had a long week. I was craving something sweet (like chocolate) but also something substantial enough to stand in for dinner. I headed to Hildebrandt’s on Hillside Avenue in Williston Park for an ice-cream soda at the counter, but my heart wasn’t in it: It was cold out and Hildebrandt’s has no vestibule.

Inspiration struck: Fresco Creperie & Café, just...

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E.A.T.S. Social House in East Massapequa: First bites

Pork chop with pineapple salsa is served at

(Credit: Newsday / Peter M. Gianotti)

E.A.T.S. Social House brings a casual, unpretentious style to the ex-site of Alaine's in East Massapequa.

It's an easygoing spot with friendly service. Order carefully and you'll have a good meal, too.

That means perusing the "tapas" list and picking meatballs stuffed with mozzarella: well-sauced and softball-size. The honey-barbecue chicken wings also are meaty and good. And the juicy...

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Swallow in Huntington closed during expansion

Angus beef sliders at Swallow in Huntington.(Nov. 20,

(Credit: Photo by Jesse Newman)

Swallow, the diminutive small plates restaurant on New York Avenue in Huntington, is currently closed during a major expansion and renovation. As chef-owner James Tchinnis tells it, by taking over the vacated spot next door (which used to be a dress shop), Swallow has tripled its space, transforming from a “cozy little joint” to a 3,000-square-foot restaurant with a full bar. But the small-plates...

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Brio launches new brunch menu at Walt Whitman mall

Berries and cream French toast is on the

(Credit: Brio Tuscan Grille)

A new brunch menu makes its debut on Saturday, April 5, at Brio Tuscan Grille at Walt Whitman Shops in Huntington Station.

Among options are a Tuscan omelet ($8.99) with egg whites, turkey sausage, and vegetables and an open-faced biscuit sandwich ($7.99) with egg, candied bacon, cheese and marinated tomatoes. On the sweeter side, there's berries and cream French toast  stuffed with mascarpone...

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Pasha Kebob fit for King of N. Lindenhurst

Pasha Kebob and Grill in North Lindenhurst specializes

(Credit: Newsday / Erica Marcus)

I don’t want to think about how many times I’ve driven by Pasha Kebob and Grill, located in a modest strip mall on Route 109 at the intersection of Straight Path in North Lindenhurst. It’s a tricky left turn from the northbound road, so that’s going to be my excuse.

Today I stopped into the little Turkish takeout market and ordered three platters to go: Adana kebab, chicken and gyro. The Adana...

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