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Closed in Merrick: Nicholas James Bistro

Nicholas James Bistro in Merrick. (July 9, 2010)

Nicholas James Bistro in Merrick. (July 9, 2010) Credit: Newsday / Thomas A. Ferrara

Nicholas James Bistro, the popular, upbeat New American restaurant in Merrick, has closed.

The closing stems from a dispute over lease renewal.

Chef Kevin Liebov of Nicholas James currently is cooking at The Savoy Tavern, also in Merrick, according to Charles Liebov, his father and a partner in the shuttered bistro. 

Kevin Liebov said the kitchen staff from Nicholas James is trasitioning to The Savoy Tavern -- in addition to being its executive chef, he will run the full-service catering operations.

Nicholas James Bistro opened in 1996. It was known for fresh, organic fare and variety. Dishes ranged from pan-seared yellowfin tuna with soba noodles to whole-wheat penne puttanesca, big salads to the Bistro burger. It also featured a popular lobster night.