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Big food with smaller prices

Ready to take a break from those New Year’s resolution diets, but don’t want to break the bank? There are plenty of great deals to be had in Long Island for those who know how to look.

Ready to take a break from those New Year’s resolution diets, but don’t want to break the bank? There are plenty of great deals to be had in Long Island for those who know how to look.

First on the list is Tara’s Inn in Port Jefferson Station on the North Shore. It may be a bit out of the way for some, but the journey will give you a chance to work up an appropriate appetite. The dive bar doesn’t look like much from the outside — or the inside — but it boasts two full kitchens and a “stimulus menu” with a generous selection for under $2, including a fresh, flame-broiled, 1/3-pound bacon cheeseburger for $1.50.

If you come for lunch, expect a 10-minute wait for a table and a lot of noise. The crowd is friendly and familiar, with some of the regulars dating back to the ’70s. Chances are, after trying the three-for-a-dollar Buffalo wings or the $10 Porterhouse steak, you’ll be coming back, too.

Not too far from Tara’s you’ll find the SE-Port Delicatessen in East Setauket. To be fair, the sandwiches aren’t really cheap, but they are huge and great for sharing. So take a fellow foodie along for the ride and indulge in one of the deli’s specialty sandwiches, like the “Boone,” “Deathwish” or “Gasm.” Some come with your choice of ice tea or lemonade.

One thing you won’t find at either of those locations is Tex-Mex, so if you’re hankering for cumin and chipotle, consider Three Amigos in East Northport. The food is fresh and generously portioned. In addition to free chips and drink refills, Three Amigos has seven combo specials for $7.50. Try the Mexican sausage burrito or the enchiladas Suiza.

 
 
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