“Welcome!” The host sang loudly at a certain establishment on Long Island that day, welcoming customers with open arms and great enthusiasm. It was as disgusting as another exchange with the senior whose text messages we had the audacity to interrupt, and who then rushed us to our table without a word.

The idea of ​​hospitality involved is one that many restaurants refuse to accept, so when the place is done right, you can’t help but cheer. Cheers to American Beauty, which recently opened a location in Massapequa Park, its third location, having previously established itself in Massapequa proper (2016) and Belmore (2019).

“I can tell in the first 30 seconds to three minutes whether they’re going to be a good server or not,” said Maria Pallotta, who owns all three American Beauties businesses with her husband, Michael Cassano, and Skip Kerth. “I can teach people how to use a point-of-sale system, and I can teach people what’s on my menu. I can’t teach you to have a great, great personality at the table.”

It also helps that your team’s cheerfulness is genuine, and that the Palota servers have plenty to cheer about. All Palotta restaurants excel at serving house-made ricotta with grilled peaches on crostini ($15); Plus fried shrimp stir-fried with Thai pepper, ginger, soy and ground peanuts ($18); Cauliflower “steak” with cashew glaze accompanied by roasted pepper hummus ($13); and a wonderful salad of Brussels sprouts and kale, with roasted pear, pecans and avocado ($16). The house burger is an American Beauty signature ($21).

But the evenings bring a fine dining menu and a great atmosphere — or rather, “non-pretentious fine dining,” as she puts it — to the Park location, where chef John Orfanos prepares his famous beef Wellington ($45), which on Mondays is wildly popular at the popular price point ( $30). Homemade pasta is worth seeking out too, as evidenced by fettuccine carbonara ($32), rigatoni Bolognese ($30) and more. The atmosphere of “American Beauty in the Park” is unavoidably different from the daytime brunch scene, but not quite so. In fact, the wonderful friendliness of the reception staff is on display at all times, and is as integral to the experience of the place as anything else. As Pallotta put it simply, “My husband always says good food can’t make up for bad service.”

American Beauty in the Park is located at 1026 Park Blvd. In Massapequa Park, 516-541-1075, americanbeautyrestaurants.com. Hours are 10am-3pm daily for breakfast and lunch. Dinner Monday-Thursday 4:30-10pm, Friday and Saturday 4:30-11pm and Sunday 4:30-9pm

    (tags for translation) Restaurants 

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