In last week's New York Post, restaurant critic Steve Cuozzo panned Joanne, the new Manhattan restaurant owned by Lady Gaga's parents. In the process of taking down the "clueless" service and chef Art Smith's cooking (the worst calamari "in a lifetime of squid-mongering," "unspeakably fatty" osso bucco), Cuozzo launches a salvo at Long Island, observing that Joanne's "one-note orecchiette with shellfish recalled the flaccid pasta commonly doled out along Long Island's Jericho Turnpike -- or at 35,000 feet."

It's true that Jericho is lined with its fair share of mediocre Italian restaurants, but even the worst (and I've probably eaten there) does a better job than the airlines. But there's also a lot of good pasta to be had along Route 25. We'd direct Mr. Cuozzo to Arturo's in Floral Park, Umberto's in New Hyde Park, Piccolo's in Mineola (where they make their own pasta) and Piccolo Mondo in Huntington. -- ERICA MARCUS


The Magic Fountain, the popular ice-cream destination in Mattituck, is for sale.

Owner Choudry Ali said he plans to move to Utah, where he and his wife have a home. He added that he may open an ice cream shop there. Ali said in a telephone interview that The Magic Fountain was busy, even in February, and that his decision was based on a long-standing desire to relocate West. There are bidders for The Magic Fountain, but Ali wouldn't discuss details. He plans to keep scooping until a sale is complete.

In addition to all the familiar flavors, The Magic Fountain has offered such ice creams as coconut-avocado, coconut-jalapeño, goat cheese, red wine- strawberries, olive oil and sweet corn.

Among the current flavors of the month are chocolate-peanut butter chunk pie and Mighty Joe Young, with bananas, caramel and nuts.

The Magic Fountain, 9825 Main Rd., Mattituck; 631-298-4908 -- PETER M. GIANOTTI


The Phoenix recently hatched in the former Seaford nest of Pomodorino. Chef Ryan Augusta, who was executive chef at The Good Life in Massapequa, puts out an American menu made up of sandwiches, flatbread pizzas and salads by day, small plates at night. On the Phoenix's "core" daytime menu: a roasted pork sandwich ($13), a BBQ pulled duck pizza ($10 small, $17 large) and a West Coast salad of Napa cabbage, snow peas, fried wontons, peanuts in a sesame-ginger vinaigrette ($10).

At night, the menu is divided into Earth, or vegetable dishes, such as tempura carrots with sweet and spicy sauce and toasted peanuts ($5); Land, or meat items, such as short rib with truffle whipped potatoes ($7); and Sea, exemplified by seared scallops with rice cakes ($8).

The Phoenix is at 3915 Merrick Rd., Seaford, 516-809-9693 -- JOAN REMINICK