Rocco DiSpirito is coming to the rescue.
On Thursday, Dec, 5 at 10 p.m., you can watch as another Long Island restaurant get a TV makeover — this time on Food Network’s “A Restaurant Divided” with culinary personality DiSpirito running the show.
As executive chef Michael Rodonis Jr. tells it, his family’s Oceanside restaurant, Michael’s Porthole, was hard hit by superstorm Sandy. DiSpirito and his crew intervened to help rebuild and re-energize the place. He tested two new concepts — Il Portello, an Italian seafood pasta house, and a Canal Grill House, a seafood restaurant centered around local fish and produce.
The winner will be revealed on the show, but it’s fair to say that, for now, both are represented on the restaurant’s signage, along with the original name. Both concepts, as well, are featured in the menu, with the dishes introduced by DiSpirito designed to raise profitability, reduce food costs and draw, as much as possible, on local fish and produce. Much of the restaurant's original menu remains, as well, under the heading of ”Michael's Porthole.”
On the new menu: meatball sliders ($8), lobster bisque ($6), chicken cacciatore ($15) and lobster Thermidor ($25).
Michael's Porthole (aka Il Portello and Canal Grill House) is at 92 New St., Oceanside, 516-608-1380, michaelsportholeli.com.