I love showing people around New York City, mixing food exploration with sightseeing. A recent expedition involved taking Mark, a food guy visiting from Bali, on a highly personalized journey that took into consideration preferences of his (bakeries, ice cream) and ruled out cuisines from Southeast Asia (where he lives and travels), Japan (his future home), and squeezed it into one dinner Wednesday night and half of the next day, along with homework to complete in his own time. We could have covered more places, but unlike me (probably wisely), he doesn’t eat for science – only for hunger – and our geographically disparate destinations took a toll on available eating time due to heavy New York City traffic.
Category: Queens (Page 1 of 2)
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.
Alpha Dominche Extraction Lab | Sunset Park
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.