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GM gem magazine lifestyle magazine for the Long Island woman

GEMs of Long Island

dining & night life

GIRL’S NIGHT OUT GEM Magazine LI hit the streets to find out what women really want to know and 85% of Long Island women surveyed said, “Where can we go and for a lively atmosphere with good food and live music?” Our “Girl’s Night Out” column shows the LI Woman exactly that--featuring the best places to meet-up with the girls, get comfortable and dine on creative food while having fun and enjoying a DJ or live music and dancing.

DINING OUT GEM Magazine LI provides a themed monthly listing of Long Island restaurants that serve a specific cuisine. Whether it is Italian, French, Steak, Seafood or simply American, GEM Magazine LI entices our readers with short promos describing mouth -watering chef specialties, weekly specials and an insight into the dining atmosphere and experience of dining out on Long Island.

GOOD EATS Is there a way you can eat out and eat healthy, too? Yes, you can, and GEM Magazine is on a mission to spread the word! We know that many restaurants offer delicious meals that are low in saturated fat and cholesterol, others that prepare a variety of gluten-free and vegetarian items as daily menu selections. This column showcases a Long Island restaurant that offers healthy eating options, “good for you” dishes, and menu substitutions for the health conscious diner.


gems of long island

good eats brasserie cassis of mussels, Jarret d’Agneau braised lamb shanks served with wild mushroom risotto, onions turnips and baby carrots, or grilled salmon over hearty green lentils for a taste of their signature dishes. The special du jour, or daily specials, such as Coq au Vin, chicken simmered in red wine reduction or Bouillabaisse, a light and lovely mixed seafood stew served over potatoes and vegetables, are classic bistro fare offered to keep the Francophiles coming back for more. The staff provides friendly service and is very knowledgeable in every aspect of food and wine selections, including French digestifs like pernod, pastis and

“French food is too rich for me”, so it has been said my many a health-conscious diner, but at Brasserie Cassis guests will experience many healthful choices as they taste the freshness and simplicity of the foods of the French countryside. The dishes are creative, lighter versions of traditional French favorites, like colorful tuna Nicoise salad, which is accompanied by greens and beans and red ripe tomatoes, mushroom-filled omelets or crepes, or roasted chicken served with tender haricots verts. You can be sure to discover “good eats” here, as the menu abounds with bright, flavorful choices. Brasserie Cassis and brings a

absinthe, an anise-flavored spirit derived from herbs. Dessert can be decadent, but oh, so worth the calories, especially the profiteroles with chocolate sauce, apple tarte tatin and crème brulee. When you come to Brasserie Cassis, savor the authentic food, delight in the wine and feel good to know that you are experiencing a bit of the joie de vivre, the joy of living that the French are truly famous for. Located at 387 S. Oyster Bay Road, Plainview, NY, 516-653-0090, brasseriecassis.com. • Joanne Kois, joanne@gemmagazineli.com

warm touch of Gallic charm and superb French food to the Plainview Center, at 387 South Oyster Bay Road. Its ambience and décor are reminders of the bistros of the Parisian Left Bank with ornate ceiling moldings and large antique mirrors. The stage is further set with stunning globe chandeliers, vintage posters, a zinc bar top, and comfortable cherry-colored leather banquets. Come in and enjoy classics like Moules Marinieres, a white wine and garlic broth over a steaming pot

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BISTRO

BISTRO

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10 UniqUe RestaURants... a single Passion FoR excellence

BRASSERIE

BISTRO BRASSERIE

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BRASSERIE

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www.reststarinc.com La P’tite La P’tite BISTRO

BISTRO

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Photo Copyright Jim Lennon as seen in Great Restaurants of Long Island Magazine

BRASSERIE

BRASSERIE

®

La P’tite 229 Columbus Ave. • New York, NY 10023 (212) 721-3009

23 Wall St. • Huntington, NY 11743 (631) 603-3600

La P’tite

BI

La P’tite BISTRO

®

BISTRO

473 Columbus Ave. New York, NY 10024 • (212) 400-9401 1362 Old Northern Blvd. Roslyn, NY 11576 • (516) 403-4400

BRA ®

BISTRO

294 Main St. • Pt. Washington, NY 11050 (516) 767-7164

La P’tite BRASSERIE

55 Stewart Ave. Huntington, NY 11743 (631) 812-0060

4 Berry Hill Rd. • Syosset, NY 11791 (516) 364-0516

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BRASSERIE

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BRASSERIE

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225 Columbus Ave. New York, NY 10023 • (212) 579-3966 55B Wall St. Huntington, NY 11743 • (631) 421-4122 387 S. Oyster Bay Rd. P’tite Plainview, NY 11803 • (516) 653-0090

www.reststarinc.com La P’tite

www.restarinc.com BISTRO

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gems of long island

home decor good eats Grasso’s

of cold spring harbor

R

estaurant dining is getting a makeover at Grasso’s in Cold Spring Harbor. While we all love the experience of dining out and tasting creatively prepared foods in a social atmosphere, what we really want are options to make healthier choices in restaurants. The hottest consumer trend is the growing demand for healthier menu options and more accurate nutritional information in restaurants. Grasso’s Restaurant, a lovely storefront in the village of Cold Spring Harbor, has a menu that is ahead of the curve, offering dishes like veal scaloppini saltimbocca with prosciutto di Parma and fresh sage or a risotto with roasted apple butternut squash and brussel sprout leaves that are specifically designated as gluten free (GF) or vegetarian. At Grasso’s, guests can choose appetizers, pastas and entrees that are freshly prepared to meet their health needs. The designations are noted right on the menu, allowing guests the freedom to make personal dietary decisions at their own discretion. The fall menu, new this month, is filled with delectable new dining choices, half of which are either gluten -free or vegetarian. This commitment to the health and well being of her guests is Gail Grasso’s signature statement to good eating here on Long Island. Grasso’s Restaurant is owned by Gail Grasso and along with her chef of seventeen years, Tony Canales, they have recreated their restaurant with the passion for pleasing their guests by offering a wide variety of culinary delights with a health-conscious point of view. The sophisticated bar is a lively place to start with specialty martinis which can be made with choice organic vodkas. Every Wednesday through Saturday night, the room transforms into a little nightclub as live jazz musicians take the stage for your entertainment. In the more romantic dining room, guests can enjoy seasonal selections and old favorites like fresh cavatelli Bolognese that will surely tempt the palate. If you want to eat on the lighter side, try grilled calamari served with baby arugula, chopped tomatoes, olive oil and balsamic vinegar, or Prince Edward Island mussels with coconut milk, red 50

gemmagazineli.com

curry paste and lemon grass for a taste of Asian flavors. Gail’s pear salad with hazelnut vinaigrette is a standout! A wide variety of pasta dishes, like fresh fusilli with lobster, can be made gluten free or with whole-wheat pasta, as per request. Enticing entrée specials include an authentically prepared whole branzino fish with olive oil and lemon, or grilled Atlantic salmon served with fresh green lentil salad and roasted beets. For those who prefer meat, grilled fillet mignon and fruit stuffed pork loin are perfectly and healthfully prepared, all served with fresh vegetables and delectable accompaniments to satisfy all your cravings. Grasso’s Restaurant in Cold Spring Harbor is the winner of the 2011 Open Tale Diners Choice Award for it’s creative New American fare. At Grasso’s, you can feel good about what you eat. It is a true “gem’ of a restaurant dining experience! 134 Main Street, Cold Spring Harbor, 631-367-6060, grassorestaurant.com. -Joanne Kois


gems of long island

Struggling with your healthy eating goals at a restaurant? Eat out sensibly. Try not to arrive at the restaurant starving because you won’t be able to keep out of the bread basket! One important component of eating healthfully is maintaining sensible and appropriate portion sizes. Try these tips –you’ll stay healthy while enjoying dining out.

• Instead of a large entrée, order an appetizer and a leafy green salad or choose two appetizers. • Share from start to finish. Order one appetizer for the whole table and then order one dessert with multiple forks. Sometimes, just a bite or two is perfect. • Share an entrée. You can ask your server to split the meal in the kitchen or divide it up yourselves at the table. • Beware of beverage calories from alcohol, juice and sodas. Consider these calories as extras. Have a glass of wine, a light beer or add club soda to your cocktail to keep control of calories.

A Whole Approach to a Heal

• Savor your meal twice as much. Eat half at the restaurant, then take the other half home to enjoy with a green salad the next day.

-Joanne Kois

Fine Dining & Jazz

live MuSiC weekly wedneSday-Saturday nigHtS jazz brunCH Sunday

dine Huntington oCt. 9tH - 16tH prix fixe Menu $24.95

631-367-6060 134 Main St., Cold Spring Harbor www.graSSoSreStaurant.CoM october 2011

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gems of long island

girls night out Black & Blue Seafood Chophouse Black & Blue on Wall Street in Huntington Village has made a name for itself as the classiest spot for Huntington night life. This little hot spot boasts live music on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturday nights. From classic rock, to reggae, and even some Hawaiian tunes, you’re sure to find one night that suits your taste. Saturday is the best night to grab your friends and dance the night away. It’s a cut loose crowd with a great vibe. Stick around after enjoying a delicious meal and sample one of their signature seasonal martinis. The Pumpkin Alexander combines brandy and pumpkin schnapps to make delicious spiced treat. The commanding wrap-around bar gets a later kick in the evenings. A mixed crowd of late 20’s to early 50’s all enjoy the genuine atmosphere and is great for singles, couples, large groups. If you are looking for sophisticated yet adventurous crowd, leave the kids bars behind and enjoy a different side of Huntington. Monday night and Sunday All Day football specials! Black & Blue Seafood Chophouse 65 Wall Street, Huntington Village 631-385-9255 blackandbluehuntington.com

Lunch Mon-Sat Noon-3pm; Dinner from 5pm Brunch Sunday 11-3pm.

Cafe Buenos Aires Cafe Buenos Aires in Huntington is the place to meet your gal pals to enjoy a wellchosen glass of Malbac wine or share a pitcher of fruity sangria. Enjoy mingling with the vibrant bar crowd or sit at the sidewalk café. Be charmed by the turn-of-the century onyx and mahogany bar while you sample a selection of mouth-watering hot or cold tapas, like beef, chicken or creamy corn empanadas, garlicky shrimp, delectable salt-cod croquettes and lush Serrano ham. The cuisine at Café evokes the tastes of Argentina and along with the ambience of this village hot spot, you feel transformed by its soul and South American spirit. Girls may choose to sit and relax in the dining room and enjoy an extensive menu from the kitchen of Argentina, accented with European influences. The specialty seafood dishes, like monkfish wrapped in prosciutto and the ever- popular, pan-seared striped bass with risotto get raves. A signature dish is the Argentinean beef, brightened with chimichurri sauce. A cheese course of manchego and Argentina reggianito with guava paste is available for sharing. Girls will love the luscious flan for dessert. Café Buenos Aires, always entertaining and social, especially on Friday nights when professional tango dancers move gracefully through the rooms enlivening the mood even more. Café Buenos Aires 23 Wall Street, Huntington Village 631-603-3600 cafebuenosaires.net • Joanne Kois, joanne@gemmagazineli.com

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Black&Blue SEAFOOD CHOPHOUSE

LIVE MUSIC

WEEKLY WEDNESDAY -SATURDAY

The “Ultimate” HAPPY HOUR Half Price Drinks & Appetizers

Monday - Friday 4pm - 7pm (bar only)

Now Booking

Holiday Parties Accommodations up to 100 people Book Now For

New Year’s Eve Featuring live music from 6 Guns 5

631-385-9255

65 WALL STREET, HUNTINGTON, NY 11743 WWW.BLACKANDBLUEHUNTINGTON.COM


gems of long island

girls night out v i ta e o f h u n t i n g t o n

W

hen the girls get together, we want to celebrate life, and the place to do that is at Vitae in Huntington. Vitae in Latin means “life”, and from the moment you enter the newly transformed restaurant you feel like you’re living the good life. The elegant restaurant feels warm upon entry with subdued lighting, metallic tones and distinctive art to entertain the eye. The onyx bar is a lively place to meet, as the welcoming staff is ready to mix you one of their specialty martinis like the Pearisian Night, with pear nectar and Chambord or the Vitae Martini made with vodka, orange liqueur, and passion fruit. Girls can get excited to try Vitae’s signature cocktails, like the Strawberry Basil Crush or PomeBellini. There is also a lovely selection of wines by the glass to enjoy while sampling offerings from the Bar Bites menu: artisanal cheeses and charcuterie and marinated olives. It is fun to indulge in the braised short rib meatball “lollipops” or some sweet Thai chili-glazed calamari and seaweed salad. The bar vibe is sexy, as is the sangria, so named, topped prettily with fresh fruit. Gals can pick on the decedent “Dirty Chips”, or white truffle frites, to get ready for the night ahead.

Every night is a good night to come by Vitae for drinks or dinner. Beginning at 7PM, ladies (and gentlemen too!) can enjoy a complimentary plate of hors d-oeuvres with the purchase of a glass of wine or cocktail. Ladies love the Happy Hour with half-price cocktails served Monday through Friday 4-7PM. Vitae’s Thursday night is Ladies Night, as select cocktails and martinis are specially priced, all night, as a deejay gets the real party started at 9PM. Sometimes girls just want to dine, and the dining room at Vitae is warmly inviting. Sit cozily on burgundy leather banquettes and enjoy a classic menu of continental cuisine starting with the pan-seared scallops with parsnip puree or mussels Vitae with a hint of saffron; then let the feast continue on with a perfectly cooked filet mignon, complimented by garlic mashed potatoes and sautéed baby spinach or asparagus risotto with exotic mushrooms. Gals will always make room for dessert—cheesecake or a luscious banana split —for sharing, of course, like life and a good night out at Vitae. Located at 54 New Street, Huntington, NY, 631-385-1919, vitaeli.com. • Joanne Kois, joanne@gemmagazineli.com Photo by Jim Lennon

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gems of long island

dining out Ta k e s o m e T i m e o u T f r o m y o u r B u s y fa l l s C h e d u l e T o m e e T u p w i T h f a m i ly a n d f r i e n d s a T o n e o f o u r f a v o r i T e n e i g h B o r h o o d r e s Ta u r a n T “ g e m s ” 516 ameriCan kiTChen Serving American comfort food at reasonable prices, this new Syosset café offers good beers on tap, bringing back favorites like Pabst Blue Ribbon as well as local specialty brews. The relaxed atmosphere offers tasty bites, like pork sliders, spicy Thai calamari, Baja fish tacos and sautéed mussels. The menu is full of creative salads, juicy burgers, big sandwiches, and dinners for every American taste.

516 American Kitchen photo by Kathy Kmonicek

Café Buenos aires Cafe Buenos Aires in Huntington is the place to meet to enjoy a well-chosen glass of Malbac wine or share a pitcher of fruity sangria. Enjoy mingling with the vibrant bar crowd or sit at the sidewalk café. The cuisine at Café evokes the tastes of Argentina. Choose from the hot or cold tapas menu and enjoy specialty seafood dishes, like monkfish wrapped in prosciutto, the ever-popular, pan-seared striped bass with risotto, the “raved-about” paella, or their signature dish Argentinean beef, brightened with chimichurri sauce. Café Buenos Aires, always entertaining and social, especially on Friday nights when professional tango dancers move gracefully through the rooms enlivening the mood even more. 23 Wall Street, Huntington Village 631-603-3600, cafebuenosaires.net

The new $5.00 drink/appetizer menu at the bar features good eats like wing baskets, popcorn shrimp and their famous soft bar pretzel. 4 Berry Hill Road, Syosset 516-364-0516, 516kitchen.com

rookies sporTs CluB For a unique experience at a sports bar, enjoy a meal while you watch your favorite sports team. Rookies’ innovative audio and visual experience allows you to watch up to 10 different games at once while and you choose the audio are your table! Kid-friendly with a menu of six different flavors of buffalo wings, a variety of thin-crust pizzas, Hall-of-Fame steak burgers and nachos. Happy Hour happens every day from 3-7 PM. Check their weekly lineup for event specials. Monday night is “wing night” so stay for football. 70 Gerard Street, Huntington Village 631-933-0424, rookiesny.com

BlaCk & Blue seafood Chophouse Black & Blue on Wall Street in Huntington Village has made a name for itself as a classy spot for nightlife. There’s music on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday nights from classic rock to reggae and even Hawaiian tunes. Sample one of their signature martinis and stay for dinner starting with the Black Angus beef and gorgonzola fondue, crispy, fiery calamari and choices highlighted from the land and sea menu. Come for appetizers at the bar and stay for football on Monday night and all-day Sunday football specials. 65 Wall Street, Huntington Village 631-385-9255, blackandbluehuntington.com

Rookies Sports Club

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gems of long island

dining out ta k e a B r e a k f r o m t h e h o l i d ay r u s h t h i s s e a s o n a n d t r e at y o u r s e l f a n d y o u r f a m i ly t o s o m e w a r m i n g C o m f o r t f o o d a t o n e o f o u r faV o r i t e n e i g h B o r h o o d “ g e m s ” . - Joanne kois Brasserie Cassis Brasserie Cassis has the warm touch of Gallic charm and comforting French-inspired food that your crave. The ambience and décor are reminders of the bistros on the Parisian Left Bank and their signature dishes are lighter versions of traditional French favorites like Coq au Vin, Bouillabaisse. Onion Soup and Steak Frites. 387 South Oyster Bay Road, Plainview 516-653-0090 brasseriecassis.com Black & Blue, Huntington

V i ta e Vitae Restaurant has the feel of the good life as you enter into the warmth of subdued lighting and the comfort of large leather banquettes. Sit at the bar and choose from the lovely selections of wine or signature martinis before you enjoy your savory meal from a classic menu of continental cuisine like Chicken Vitae, Grilled Veal Chop, Crab-Crusted Sole or house pastas and risotto. 54 New Street, Huntington 631-385-1919 vitaeli.com

BlaCk & Blue seafood Chophouse Black & Blue on Wall Street in Huntington Village has made a name for itself as a classy spot for nightlife. There’s music on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturday nights from classic rock to reggae and even Hawaiian tunes. Sample one of their signature martinis and stay for dinner starting with the Black Angus beef and gorgonzola fondue, crispy, fiery calamari and choices highlighted from the land and sea menu. 65 Wall Street, Huntington Village 631-385-9255 Blackandbluehuntington.com

grasso’s

Vitae, Huntington

Café Buenos aires Cafe Buenos Aires in Huntington is the place to meet to enjoy a wellchosen glass of Malbac wine or share a pitcher of fruity sangria. Enjoy mingling with the vibrant bar crowd or sit at the sidewalk café. The cuisine at Café evokes the tastes of Argentina. Choose from the hot or cold tapas menu and enjoy specialty seafood dishes, like monkfish wrapped in prosciutto, the ever- popular, pan-seared striped bass with risotto, the “raved-about” paella, or their signature dish Argentinean beef, brightened with chimichurri sauce. Café Buenos Aires, always entertaining and social, especially on Friday nights when professional tango dancers move gracefully through the rooms enlivening the mood even more. 23 Wall Street, Huntington Village 631-603-3600 cafebuenosaires.net

Grasso’s Restaurant in Cold Spring Harbor has a menu that is ahead of the curve, offering dishes that are specifically designated as gluten free (GF) or vegetarian. The sophisticated bar is a lively place to start with specialty martinis and choice organic vodkas. There’s music Wednesday through Saturday night, transforming the room into a little nightclub with live jazz musicians. 134 Main Street, Cold Spring Harbor 631-367-6060 grassorestauant.com

516 ameriCan kitChen Serving American comfort food at reasonable prices, this new Syosset café offers good beers on tap, bringing back favorites like Pabst Blue Ribbon as well as local specialty brews. The relaxed atmosphere offers tasty bites, like pork sliders, spicy Thai calamari, Baja fish tacos and sautéed mussels. The menu is full of creative salads, juicy burgers, big sandwiches, and dinners for every American taste. The new $5.00 drink/appetizer menu at the bar features good eats like wing baskets, popcorn shrimp and their famous soft bar pretzel. 4 Berry Hill Road, Syosset 516-364-0516 516kitchen.com

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Long Island Dining and Night Life