In the dining world, success breeds satellites. Here are four new restaurants whose older siblings have already established themselves.
Offshoot of the two-star Williston Park Persian, Miraj succeeds three short-lived Indian restaurants at the same address -- Taste of Madras, Curry Club and Aspara. The menu is identical to the original, featuring soulful Persian cuisine. Kashkeh bodemjan, a silky-smooth dip of eggplant, tomato and yogurt, and a bright chopped Shirazi salad are winning starters. Kebabs, served on platters heaped with basmati rice pilaf, are uniformly excellent.
96 N. Broadway, Hicksville, 516-597-4440, mirajhealthygrill.com
Commack now has an Argentine tapas bar to call its own since Hugo Garcia and Fabio Machado launched Café Mendoza, a smaller version of their Huntington restaurant Café Buenos Aires. The two menus are very similar -- lots of small plates inspired by the cuisines of Spain and Argentina, grilled meats and seafood specialties -- and a few of the more popular special tapas at Buenos Aires (braised pork belly with dried fruits, steak tartare) have earned a permanent place on Mendoza's menu.
169 Commack Rd., Commack, 631-486-8848, cafemendoza.com
Wantagh's new Mexican restaurant is part of a Long Island chainlet with branches in Hicksville and East Meadow. It takes over the former home of Toro Pazzo, Trattachino and Lounge Burger. On the menu: guacamole made tableside, fish tacos, enchiladas suizas with chicken or shrimp, chicken or beef tamales and chicken mole poblano.
753 Wantagh Ave., Wantagh, 516-595-7278, margaritascafe.com
Serving pizza, pasta and Parms, Spuntino isn't breaking new ground. But this St. James branch of the Dix Hills stalwart is among the more attractive of its ilk, with a spacious interior brightened by an expanse of arched windows. Friendly service adds to the overall experience. Margherita pizzette, arancini al forno, fettuccine Bolognese, chicken Parm and the New Orleans-inspired muffuletta panino are all recommended.
420 N. Country Rd. St. James, 631-686-6700, spuntinoonline.com