Looking for good eats around Hauppauge in LI
I will be visiting my father and sister this coming Sat. again and will probably end up eating both lunch and dinner around Hauppauge area. One thing I dread about visiting them in Hauppauge over the past 13 years is the limited restaurant choices they know. In the recent years we seem to always end up at either Kotobuki or Takara and I'm tired of them, esp. the ridiculous long wait at Kotobuki. Their other suggestions are Olive Garden and Burger King, which I refuse to set my foot in but I don't feel like driving into Queens to get decent eats. I can't believe there aren't better restaurant choices in the area. I need help! Also, I'm looking for a good cafe that serves good coffee with a relaxing atmosphere that we can linger a while, not a Starbuck please. Please help me end this dining misery once for all. Thanks.
You mentioned Olive Garden, which is corporate-Italian. If you like that type of food, try Carrabbas, on Route 347, slightly east of Terry Road. It is much better than the OG. If you like Greek, Acropolis (Smithtown Blvd, Nesconset) is excellent. Near Acropolis is Sun Dried Tomato which is good for informal dining. It is a pizzeria in fron with tables in the back. For a good lunch, try Maureen's Kitchen on Terry Road, north of 347. For lunch , you can also do Panero's on 347 and 111. For excellent Italian dining, try La Scala on 111, just south of 495.
There are three good Italian restaurants in close proximity on Motor Parkway in Hauppage.They are Sempre Vivello(sic),San Marco and Mario.I have eaten in each and can vouch for their quality.
For casual, tasty Italian, Branchinelli's, on Rte. 111 just behind the shopping center where Kotobuki is located, is very good and reasonable. In the Takara shopping center, Thai Angel is also delicious for your typical thai fare. Siempre Vivolo is high end, classic italian. The veal chop stuffed with prosciutto and fontina is devastating.
La Scala on RT 111 (near the LIE) is supposed to be very good. Also on Motor Parkway look for Pomodorino for very reasonable, basic pasta and pizzas. Alas, there aren't any nice cafes besides the Starbucks on 111. You have to go all the way north to Smithtown to find anything non-Starbucks.
Thai House and Casa Rustica, both in Smithtown, are very good. Mirabelle in St. James is always lovely, though pricey. I also like Maureen's Kitchen, but for breakfast, not lunch. But it is usually so crowded, especially on weekends, that it is not conducive to lingering.
Almost forgot Kitchen a Bistro, in St. James. Wonderful food in a tiny, fun room. Reservations a must.