A lot of cafes have opened in the past few months. I didn’t make it to all of them, but these are my favorites out of the ones I did visit. This is a running series and the previous edition can be found here. Order is alphabetical.
Category: Queens (Page 1 of 2)
New specialty coffee shops continue to open in New York City at a furious rate, and I’ve given up trying to get to all of them. However, I still (eventually) make it to a lot of them and write about the ones that are special in some way, or fill a void in a previously underserved neighborhood.
The bulk of the cafes I’ve visited lately that have opened in the last few months are in Brooklyn, with a couple in Manhattan, and one in Queens. Collectively they use coffee from a striking variety of roasters, mostly local, but some further afield.
Ignoring the warnings of a Flushing food buddy that ingredient quality and preparation had taken a nosedive, I recently revisited the ungainly named but formerly reliable downtown Flushing standby, Hunan Kitchen of Grand Sichuan (HKGS), with a small group of repeat visitors for a late-night meal. Although I have at least 10 HKGS sojourns under my belt, it was my first since 2014, and I was shocked by how far it had fallen.
I recently lunched at Buttumak (부뚜막), a Northern Blvd spot in the Murray Hill section of Flushing that has replaced the same owner’s late, unlamented, strangely named Korean-Chinese restaurant, 짜장.com. Not that there was anything particularly bad about 짜장.com – they produced fine renditions of Korean Chinese standards (what Koreans call Chinese food) – but Buttumak has so much more going for it.
During a Labor Day Weekend visit to a favorite restaurant, Kung Fu Xiao Long Bao, I noticed a new spot down the street with the moniker Nan Yang Kitchen — the Chinese name 南洋餐廳 means Southeast Asian Kitchen — and a quick menu perusal turned up mainly Malaysian dishes. I’m looking forward to checking it out — hopefully this spot will raise the level of Malaysian food in New York City.
Sunset Park’s Yun Nan Flavour Garden is one of my go-to spots for affordable, high quality, flavorful Chinese food, so I was excited when a review of an unknown-to-me Yunnan restaurant, Deng Ji Noodle House (云南过桥米线), popped up in a Flushing blog a few months back, especially since there are very few places showcasing that region’s food in the New York City area.