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Rialto in Carle Place: still cooking

Zuccotto, almond-flavored sponge cake, at Rialto in Carle

Zuccotto, almond-flavored sponge cake, at Rialto in Carle Place. (February 2012) Credit: Newsday, 2012 / Peter M. Gianotti

Rialto, which has bridged three decades and earned as many stars in Carle Place, has a new chef and owners. And the food still is excellent.

Mario Fuentes, formerly of Cafe Testarossa in Syosset, now runs the kitchen. He and his wife, Tara, own the cozy, continental eatery.

The traditional look is pretty much the same, with dark-wood and easy-on-the-eyes artwork. It's a relaxed spot for adults, and children should enjoy the fare, too. Service also is unchanged, which is to say, exceptional.

Originally, Fuentes planned to change the name of the restaurant to Acquabella. But he reconsidered the decision and plans to keep the one that has defined the address for 27 years.

Among Fuentes' winning dishes are striped bass, with a horseradish-sparked oreganata, pan seared and finished with an orange beurre blanc; Gorgonzola-crusted filet mignon atop sauteed potatoes and mushrooms; and orecchiette  with crumbled sausage, broccoli rabe, chickpeas, crushed tomatoes and garlic and olive oil.

House-made desserts stand out. Look for the limoncello-flavored layer cake and  the variation on zuccotto, the Tuscan sponge-cake sweet, here elevated with crushed almonds.

Rialto is open Tuesday to Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.;  Saturday, 4 to 11 p.m.;  and Sunday, 3 to 9 p.m.

Rialto, 588 Westbury Ave., Carle Place; 516-997-5283.

Almond-flavored zuccotto, drizzled with chocolate, at Rialto.

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