Mermaid of Hewlett doesn't have quite the same ring as "Lawrence of Arabia" or "Clive of India." But it's putting in a heroic effort on Broadway.
The new eatery has a familiar menu, in a style that revives memories of "continental" cuisine. A little French, a little Italian, some seafood, few surprises. You've been there. But the service is very friendly and accommodating, and you'll feel very welcome.
They, in turn, should welcome a bread baker. Dreary, reheated slices make up the basket. They don't improve, even with a dip in the house's mild, pleasing pureed vegetable soup ($3).
A square of polenta capped with seafood, melted provolone, oyster mushrooms and brown sauce ($12) complicates things, but the polenta is good. Bruschetta and baked eggplant ($8 each), shrimp cocktail ($9) and mussels mariniere ($9) are alternatives. The grilled branzino ($23) leads the swimmers; a grilled rib-eye ($28), the turf list. Cheesecake ($9) comes with strawberry sauce.
Mermaid of Hewlett is at 1230 Broadway; 516-812-3920.
Ariel might approve.