The Capital Grille at Roosevelt Field already is as jammed as the mall during holiday season. The economy must be improving.
This restaurant, part of a 48-branch chain, specializes in steak (very good) and seafood (often better), in a setting marked by horsey and fox-hunt paintings, deer heads, portraits that take in Charles Lindbergh for a local angle and Jackie Kennedy for style. And there's a statue of the scales of justice at the entrance to the bar.
It's all precisely calculated in an upscale, corporate way -- from the look to the pace. Everyone is polite and on-message. Weekend walk-ins should expect a wait. Some choose to eat in the bar, which itself overflows.
While on the subject of libations, you can rent a wine locker for $350 a year, but the 12 bottles must be purchased from the Grille's list. No corkage fee, however.
To go with your wine: fine lobster-and-crab cakes; a juicy, bone-in, dry-aged Kona-coffee crusted sirloin; thick and moist grilled swordfish with lemon-shallot relish; and crisp Parmesan-and-truffle oiled fries. Lots of choices. Figure $75 to $100 per person for dinner, with a drink and dessert.
Good shopping nearby, too.
The Capital Grille, 630 Old Country Rd., Garden City, at Roosevelt Field, near the movies; 516-746-1675.
Photo: Lobster-and-crab cakes at The Capital Grille.