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Parea Restaurant & Snack Bar opens in Huntington

A veal souvlaki sandwich at Parea, which has

A veal souvlaki sandwich at Parea, which has opened in Huntington in the space where Mediterranean Snack Bar used to be. Credit: Newsday/Corin Hirsch

Those who have missed Huntington's Mediterranean Snack Bar since it closed last winter are in for some some deja vu: An homage Greek restaurant has opened in its place, with spiffed-up digs and exactly the same menu.

Parea Restaurant & Snack Bar debuted recently with nearly identical opening hours, staff and dishes as its predecessor, from veal souvlaki to saganaki (sauteed Kasseri cheese) and moussaka, the Greek casserole of eggplant, tomatoes, potato and ground beef.

John, Anna, Pamela and Niko Papavasilopoulos (father, mother, daughter and son, respectively) purchased the building from Steve Soulellis, who opened Mediterranean Snack Bar in January 1975 and retired last winter after 43 years in business. The Papavasilopoulos family has owned the Plainview Diner for more than four decades, and Niko Papavasilopoulos said his father and Soulellis were longtime friends. "I always considered him my uncle," said Papavasilopoulos of Soulellis. "I always loved the place. I didn't want to change anything."

Except, maybe, for a slightly spruced-up interior. A renovation has lent the dining room a more whitewashed look, but the menu mirrors that of the Med Snack Bar, with prices skewing both higher and lower, but only slightly. Saganaki, hummus, baked clams and spanakopita still serve as appetizers, along with Greek salads and soups such as the chicken lemon soup called avgolemono; souvlaki, ground lamb and beef gyro and falafel can come stuffed in pita with tzatziki; and large plates take in moussaka, pastitsio (Greek-style baked pasta), baked lamb shank with orzo and various types of fish served broiled or pan-fried. Appetizers ring in between $6 and $19, and sandwiches and larger plates between $9 and $30 — the latter for a casserole of shrimp wih spinach, tomatoes and feta, topped with melted mozzarella. "Steve's Combination" (named for Soulellis) of veal souvlaki, gyro and lamb sausage lives on at $23.50.

Parea opens at 11 a.m. daily (except for Sunday, when it opens at noon) and closes at 9 p.m. Sunday to Thursday and 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. A beer and wine license is pending.

Parea, 360 New York Ave., Huntington. 631-423-8982.

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