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The dish on Long Island's restaurant and food scene

The Arden in Port Jefferson: First bites

Duck tacos are served at The Arden in

(Credit: Newsday / Peter M. Gianotti)

You probably have attended quieter riots.

The Arden, which specializes in small plates,  "vibe dining," "ultra lounge" activities, and amped-up music, is situated above Starbucks on Main Street in Port Jefferson. If you don't spot it, come the weekend, you'll hear it.

Stylish in a carefully orchestrated way, The Arden has a downtown look, with reclaimed wood, banquettes, TVs tuned...

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Post-Sandy opening in Farmingville: J&C 68

J and C 68 - reborn in Farmingville;

(Credit: Newsday / Joan Reminick)

It took almost two years,  but J&C 68 Restaurant in Farmingville has finally reopened after a fire caused by superstorm Sandy. Renovations as well as legal issues made for a long road back, according to owner Nancy Fu.

Fu added that the restaurant retains its original chef, known only as Ho, as well as mostly the same repertoire of Chinese, Japanese and Thai specialties, along with...

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Stella Blue in Huntington: First bites

Pulled pork with jalapeno cornbread and coleslaw at

(Credit: Newsday / Joan Reminick)

A larger-than-life mural of the late Jerry Garcia graces an outside brick wall of the new Stella Blue, a quirky eatery with a Woodstock vibe. Stay there longer than half an hour, and you should hear some Grateful Dead numbers being played in the background musical mix. The decor, a blend of '60s-era art and antiques, is kind of hodgepodge-lodge. Order at the counter and find some seating but be...

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Spaghettini Pizza Trattoria in Mineola: First bites

Octopus bruschetta at Spaghettini Pizza Trattoria in Mineola,

(Credit: Newsday / Joan Reminick)

Good eating prevailed at a recent dinner at the new Spaghettini Pizza Trattoria in Mineola. The attractive contemporary spot, with a pizza counter up front, is under the same family ownership as Skinny Pizza in Roslyn Heights and Roosevelt Field.

A cracker-thin crust on the restaurant’s fine Margherita pizzette ($12) held up well to its topping, a lush confluence of mozzarella, fresh basil...

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All-Star chef leaves Speonk gastropub

Executive chef Lia Fallon in the dining room

(Credit: Doug Young)

Lia Fallon, a Newsday’s 2014 All-Star chef and former chef at Amarelle in Wading River, Jedediah Hawkins Inn in Jamesport and The Riverhead Project, is no longer cooking at the 4-month-old Brewology in Speonk, whose menu she created.

According to Brewology partner Roger Bencosme, Fallon’s sous chef, Chris Zullo, has been promoted and is now running the kitchen. For now the menu is unchanged;...

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Cafe Testarossa in Syosset: First bites

Meatball sliders are flavorful at Cafe Testarossa in

(Credit: Jeremy Bales)

Actually, this should be more like the 101st bite.

I first visited Cafe Testarossa in 1988. It was very good. And, over the years, the restaurant named for the great marque of Maranello has zoomed along. There have been some hints of  Emilia-Romagna, but Billy Sansone's establishment usually  revved up in its own way.

Now, it's at full throttle, with Italian and New American...

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Two new Tex-Mex eateries debut in Wading River

Avo Mexican Grill is one of the new

(Credit: Newsday / Joan Reminick)

Two new Tex-Mex places are slinging salsa and tacos in Wading River. Let the guacamole wars begin.

There’s Avo Mexican Grill, a pretty little counter-serve eatery named for the versatile avocado, and whose interior, appropriately, is painted a lovely shade of green. The place is owned by two couples, Tara and Steve Dietz and Larissa and Joe Goller.

According to Joe Goller, the repertoire...

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Long Island Restaurants: New reviews

Swordfish on a stick is served at Grillmark

(Credit: Yvonne Albinowski)

This week, Joan Reminick reviews Grillmark in Albertson, “that rare restaurant you can feel good about frequenting more than once a week — or even once a day. Surroundings are sleek, prices moderate. The relatively healthy menu, devoted to Mediterranean-style fare, centers around clean, simple grilled “sticks” — marinated and skewered grilled poultry, seafood and meat.”

Peter M. Gianotti visits...

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Open in Oceanside: EAT Gastropub

EAT Gastropub takes over the Oceanside location that

(Credit: Newsday / Erica Marcus)

“EAT safe and use condiments!” is the motto of EAT Gastropub, which opened  this week in Oceanside.

Gastronomic safety is supposedly conferred by the restaurant’s careful sourcing of ingredients — house-ground, grass-fed Piedmontese beef in the burgers; greens and herbs grown in the on-premises greenhouse. As for condiments, the menu makes lavish use of them: sun-dried tomato aioli on...

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Closed in Huntington: The Shack

The Shack in Huntington, with a motto of

(Credit: Bruce Gilbert)

The Shack, situated on Gerard Street in downtown Huntington, has closed. The seafood-centric restaurant was the table-service offshoot of the The Shack in Centerport, a seasonal outdoor counter-serve spot for clam rolls, burgers and hot dogs.

The Huntington restaurant garnered one-and-a-half stars in a review in March of this year, with praise for such items as its briny whole baked clams...

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