Dining Detour: In and around Bethpage and Plainview
B.K. Sweeney's Parkside Tavern , 356 Broadway, Beth.page; 516-935-9597. Pubby and friendly, B.K. Sweeney's lures you with chicken potpie, meat loaf with garlic-mashed potatoes, shell steaks, hamburgers, and Monte Cristo and club sandwiches.
Blue Ocean , 300 Central Ave., Bethpage; 516-822-2888. This Asian-style bistro specializes in good sushi rolls. You'll also find satisfying shrimp dumplings, Thai-accented mango chicken and a sushi "cake" that includes tuna and yellowtail.
Cugini , 1048 Old Country Rd., Plainview; 516-931-3910. Pizza is a mainstay at Cugini. But you also can dive into focaccia, fried zucchini, eggplant rollatine, chicken scarpariello and chicken Sorrentino.
Hama , 1115 Old Country Rd., Plainview; 516-938-1117. A shopping-center storefront is home to this dependable Japanese restaurant. Have fun with the house's special sushi rolls, from "Hot Texas" with soft-shell crab to "Godzilla," with spicy tuna. "TNT" detonated with wasabi mayo holds tuna and yellowtail; "Volcano," tuna and shrimp tempura.
The Orient , 623 Hicksville Rd., Bethpage; 516-822-1010. Here's one of the very good Chinese restaurants on Long Island, a spot with some imagination and flair, in a modest setting. Even the wonton and hot-and-sour soups are tasty. But you can be more adventurous.
La Piazza , 1137 Old Country Rd., Plainview; 516-938-0800. Plenty of pizza and pasta are the essentials at La Piazza. Try the pink-sauced cavatelli with vegetables, baked manicotti, ziti with eggplant; chicken piccata or pizzaiola, sole or shrimp oreganata.
Pancho's Border Grill , 4119 Hempstead Tpke., Bethpage; 516-579-5500. The local unit in this popular group, Pancho's is all right for kids and adults. Chorizo-jalapeño quesadillas, seven fajitas, skirt steak and the chicken wings sampler lead the way.
Regal Delicatessen , 1110 Old Country Rd., Plainview; 516- 938-3588. Regal has occupied this spot since 1966. Go for the generously stuffed pastrami and corned beef sandwiches, Romanian steak, flanken and potted meatballs.
Zong's Shanghai , 558-560 Stewart Ave., Bethpage; 516- 933-3888. Chef Zong Xing Tu, a veteran of Joe's Shanghai in Manhattan and Flushing, brings one of China's best regional cuisines to Long Island. Must orders: steamed juicy dumplings, lion's head casserole, roasted bamboo shoots.
For kid-friendly restaurants in the area, try these (all are within a 10-mile radius of Old Bethpage Village Restoration):
Regal Delicatessen (1110 Old Country Rd., Plainview, 516- 938-3588), a classic kosher deli. In the shopping center just across the street is the self-explanatory La Piazza Pizza and Pasta (1137 Old Country Rd., Plainview, 516-938 0800) and The Mixed Grill (1135 Old Country Rd., Plainview, 516-932-7300), which serves a Middle Eastern-Southwestern mix of gyros, souvlaki, falafel, nachos, fajitas, humus as well as burgers (meat and veggie), soups, wraps and salads. Across Manetto Hill Road are the Plainview Diner , (1094 Old Country Rd., Plainview; 516-822-0766) and, a little further down, IHOP (1076 Old Country Rd., Plainview, 516- 822-6721.
Heading North on Manetto Hill Road you'll pass the pizzeria Bella Vista (154 Manetto Hill Rd., Plainview 516-433-4464) and then, in the Fairway Shopping Center, Caruso's Pizza & Ristorante (64 Manetto Hill Rd., Plainview, 516-433-4999) and Cheeburger Cheeburger (12 Manetto Hill Rd., Plainview, 516-939-2237) an extremely kid-friendly place specializing in burgers and shakes.
In downtown Farmingdale are two modest pizzerias, Gino's (333 Main St., Farmingdale, 516-694-7250) and Two Brothers (302 Main St., Farmingdale, 516-249-4466), as well as the old-fashioned ice cream parlor and luncheonette Bollinger's (282-84 Main St., Farmingdale, 516-501-4990).