When the new Nassau Coliseum debuts in Uniondale on April 5, Billy Joel won’t be the only beloved LI native featured. In fact, you may want to arrive early — and hungry — to fully partake of the range of local foods available at the arena.
Umberto’s of New Hyde Park will be baking personal Margherita pizzas, Roast Sandwich House (Melville and Hicksville) will be making its signature Buffalo-roasted chicken-Gorgonzola sandwiches, and Smokin’ Al’s Famous BBQ Joint (Massapequa Park) will be serving pulled pork and brisket.
These are among the eight local establishments chosen by Levy Restaurants, the arena’s operator, for its Long Island Taste program.
In September, Levy hosted an open house at the Long Island Marriott in Uniondale to sample the wares of more than 100 vendors from Nassau and Suffolk.
“I was blown away by how much great food product is available on the Island,” said Marco Fabozzi, Levy’s vice president of hospitality strategy and a Massapequa resident. “And apart from the Uniondale event, we’ve been going all over the Island visiting delis, restaurants and purveyors.”
The other chosen vendors are GreeKrave, the Deer Park Greek eatery, Cabo: A Taste of Mexico in Rockville Centre and Vincent’s Clam Bar, the Carle Place descendant of the classic Little Italy trattoria. Dogs and fries will be provided by Nathan’s, headquartered in Jericho, and Prime Food Distributor, a leading metropolitan area meat wholesaler based in Port Washington, will make the scene with its Coliseum Burger, a blend of chuck and brisket, topped with cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato and “24 sauce,” the first condiment ever named for Hempstead Turnpike.
Most of the vendors will be spread out on the main concourse and each one will offer four to five items. There will also be three additional concessions that will use local ingredients — bagels, condiments, pickles, etc. — in their dishes.
For the most part, the concessions will be takeout only, but Umberto’s will take up residence in an open-plan beer garden where a half-dozen local beers will be available on tap.