Lou Joe of Roslyn Heights, cited for its vibrant, distinctive cuisine on Newsday's Top 100 restaurant list, is closed.
A sign on the restaurant's door and a message on its web site say that the closure is temporary, but a visit to the site suggests it may be permanent. "We will notify you if we are open," according to the online statement. Owners of the restaurant could not be reached immediately.
Lou Joe earned a two and one-half star rating in Newsday in January. The restaurant opened in late 2017 and billed itself as specializing in "modern Japanese and Asian cuisine."
But that description hinted neither at the authentic, standout Chinese cuisine that was available on a separate 10-page menu nor the exceptional omakase, of chef's choice, dinner by chef Sato Cheuk.
Lou Joe's name was an Americanized reference to the city of Liuzhou in the Guangxi region of southern China, about 325 miles from Hong Kong, and reflected some of the owners' culinary preferences.
But a diner also could choose from familiar Japanese dishes, including sushi rolls and sushi combinations, bento boxes, tempuras, and teriyakis.
The chef's tasting menu included dishes such as seared foie gras finished with a syrupy spin on vinaigrette dressing, sea bream with pesto set on a tempura boat that mimicked caviar with pearls of tapioca, and bluefin tuna tartare topped with sturgeon caviar and enriched with squid ink in sauce and in a latticework wafer.
Lou Joe's Chinese specialties ranged from crisp-and-shredded Sichuan beef and spicy-and-sour lobster to pork dumplings wrapped in egg skin and velvety black-skinned chicken soup and jujube fruit, as well as beef tendon and duck tongue.
The restaurant was at 255 Willis Ave., which previously was the site of eateries Opera House and Tofu, as well as a Howard Johnson's.