Toast & Tapas Neighborhood Bistro
4 Berry Hill Rd. Syosset, NY 516-510-3855
WIth Zane Smith -- who worked and studied with both Wolfgang Puck and Gary Danko in California, also cooked at Wild Honey in Oyster Bay and Wild Harvest in Glen Cove -- as executive chef, you'll find a dinner menu strong on small plates but featuring solid entrees as well.
Toast & Tapas Neighborhood Bistro is the new incarnation of the former 516 Americana in Syosset and is now affiliated with Toast & Co. in Huntington. While the Huntington restaurant doesn’t serve dinner, the Syosset locale does. Then, on Friday and Saturday nights, it also features a tapas menu — actually, small plates, not the traditional Spanish bar snacks — as well as live music. Chef Jeff Eustler, who cooked at the now-closed Bob’s Restaurant in New Hyde Park, is using the identical breakfast menu as Toast & Co. Later in the day, though, some of the dishes are his own as are the “tapas'' on the weekends. Truly, you need a special app to figure out the hours and menu options at this place. Try to get a handle on the following; you'll be quizzed tomorrow: 1. Breakfast is served from 8 a.m. daily until closing. Except, that is, on Friday and Saturday, when it’s offered until 4 p.m. 2. An “afternoon” menu runs until 9 p.m. Monday to Thursday but only until 4 p.m. on Sunday. 3. Ready for the hard part? On Friday and Saturday, the “tapas” menu prevails from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m., in conjunction with the “afternoon” menu, minus the sandwiches. 4. Now for a look at sample menu items. The afternoon/dinner menu encompasses burgers ($9.99 to $13.99), a crabcake salad ($14.99), a chipotle chicken panino ($10.99) and, from the “comfort food” menu, a lemon and herb roasted half chicken ($16.99). Small plate, or tapas, selections include filet mignon crostini ($12.99), mini Reubens ($9.99) and crabcakes ($12.99). 5. Wondering about breakfast? I stopped by one recent morning and found the place cheerily redecorated with an orange-accented color scheme. At an upholstered booth, I had a sweet potato cake (think of a giant latke), with a creamy, savory scramble of eggs and fresh herbs topped with Canadian bacon and drizzled with chive oil. ($9.99). A hit. Toast’s “signature” chorizo skillet ($11.99) featured eggs scrambled with caramelized onion, spicy chorizo sausage and tomatoes, served up in a skillet full of crisp fried potato sticks. Hollandaise sauce was requested on the side. True, the eggs had been scrambled a bit too tightly, but, still, it was a lively dish.