In this economy, restaurants change identities the way Lady Gaga changes costumes. In Long Beach, the George Martin Restaurant Group is in the midst of a major switcheroo.
Just try to follow this.
1. Nick Diangelo (152 W. Park Ave.) closes on January 4.
2. Construction crews get to work, transforming it into (have you guessed yet?) George Martin’s Grillfire. If you've been keeping track of South Shore happenings, you'll know that a Grillfire opened in Merrick, where the original Nick Diangelo was. (Trivia question: where is the original Grillfire? Answer: Rockville Centre).
3. The moment George Martin's Grillfire opens (in about two weeks), another Long Beach restaurant, George Martin's Coastal Grill (40 E. Park Ave.) will close.
4. Cue the construction crews. When the doors open (maybe late February), the new place will be known as Nicks Tuscan Grill. George Martin Group prez George Korten said it will be "in the spirit of Nick Diangelo" but very different. Think a la carte menu, more moderate prices and intimate setting.
Got that? I know, it's exhausting.
Photo/George Martin's Coastal Grill in Long Beach/ Elizabeth Sagarin, 2007