Feed Me

The dish on Long Island's restaurant and food scene.

Giulio Cesare outlasted Roosevelt Raceway and a lot of other local landmarks to become one. This traditional Italian restaurant, festooned with celebrity autographs and populated by equally well-known business and political types from the county, continues to draw a sizable crowd, even on a weekday night.

It remains a very hands-on operation, Giulio himself presiding. And the food has resisted every trend del giorno. Order mozzarella in carrozza and top it with anchovy sauce. Sample paglia e fieno, finished with peas, prosciutto and Parmesan cheese. Find a first-class steak alla pizzaiola and an ideal red snapper Livornese. Consider osso buco and halibut oreganata. Conclude with cannoli or ricotta cheesecake, spumoni or tortoni.

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Long Island has plenty of time-capsule eateries. Giulio Cesare lets you know why they last. It's worth returning to this place, with its centurion imagery and decor that's untouched by the decades, for a basic reason: the food is very good.

Giulio Cesare is at 18 Ellison Ave., Westbury, off Old Country Road; 516-334-2982.

Osso buco at Giulio Cesare / Photo by Danielle Finkelstein