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Da Gigi Trattoria & Bar loses top chef in Lynbrook 

Chef Pierluigi Sacchetti, who served up handmade capellacci

Chef Pierluigi Sacchetti, who served up handmade capellacci pasta at Da Gigi in Lynbrook, is no longer associated with the restaurant. Credit: Daniel Brennan

Da Gigi Trattoria & Bar, the Lynbrook restaurant named Newsday's top fine-dining establishment of 2017, has lost the chef who earned the praise for his refined fresh pastas and regional Italian cooking. The owners plan to add Italian-American favorites to the menu.

Pierluigi Sacchetti, the "Gigi" after whom it's named, is no longer associated with the restaurant.

Co-owner John Raia said that Da Gigi would be including dishes such as chicken and veal Parmigiana on the menu and likely would trim some that were unfamiliar and infrequently ordered. "We're looking it over and might change it a little," he said.

The new chef is William Merget, who has cooked at the Westchester Country Club and Mu Ramen in Queens. Merget said that the seasonal menu would be  "more approachable … more friendly to the people in the Nassau-Suffolk community."

Freddy Sammarone, who steered the now-closed Ciao Bella! in Hewlett, will continue to oversee the dining room.

Da Gigi earned a three-star rating because of standout specials that included cappellacci, a hat-shaped variation of ravioli, with burrata and ground pistachio, finished with a stracchino cheese sauce; and spaghetti tossed with pecorino Romano cheese, black pepper and guanciale.

Sacchetti's notable dishes also took in pastas as varied as bucatini with spicy 'nduja sausage, tomato sauce and caciocavallo cheese; saffron gnocchetti with shrimp and crab; spaghetti alla carbonara; and paccheri, similar to large rigatoni, with cherry tomato sauce, dried buffalo mozzarella and zucchini flowers.

Raia said that the restaurant would continue to be called Da Gigi.

 174 Merrick Rd., Lynbrook, 516-599-0298, ptwelvecatering.com

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