La Marmite in Williston Park: First bites

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At La Marmite in Williston Park, baked clams

At La Marmite in Williston Park, baked clams are served on a bed of coarse salt, March 2014. Photo Credit: Newsday / Erica Marcus

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The dish on Long Island's restaurant and food scene.

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.

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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 service,  continues to be run by Manuel Gomes.

Credit chef Gregory Kearns for the successful transition. He who turns out very good baked clams and grilled octopus, buttery seared diver scallops with endive marmalade and blood orange, wild striped bass with roasted fennel, and, of course, osso buco and rack of lamb.

The house version of gateau Saint-Honore still gets your attention. And this month, La Marmite could top it with 40 candles.

La Marmite, 234 Hillside Ave., Williston Park; 516-746-1243.

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