Long Island is now blessed with not just one, but two, restaurant weeks. The autumn incarnation—Long Island Restaurant Week—runs from November 2nd to November 9th. (The vernal incarnation is Hamptons Restaurant Week.) Now in its 3rd year, with over 200 restaurants participating from Glen Cove to Montauk, the eight-day promotion isn’t just a chance for curious diners to try a new place in the less crowded off season. In a down economy, it’s a welcome cash flow bump to eateries, while also doubling as a great dining deal—$24.95 for a three-course prix fixe meal. (It is only offered until 7 p.m. on Saturday.)
Unlike Hamptons Restaurant Week, which includes Long Island wines by the glass, Long Island Restaurant Week doesn’t yet have such a pairing. But the greater number of participating restaurants from Nassau and western Suffolk Counties means a much wider selection of ethnic eats than what the Hamptons version affords. I haven’t tried many of the joints east of Riverhead, but I’m planning to visit Akbar Restaurant in Garden City (the tandoori-focused Indian restaurant that also has a Manhattan incarnation) and Besito in Rosylyn (one friend called it the La Fondita of Nassau County, referring to the Amagansett restaurant that serves what many consider the best Mexican food on the East End. Its chef, Matthew Lake, was formerly at Rosa Mexicana in the city.
The details and complete list of participating restaurants, go to www.longislandrestaurantweek.com.
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