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I'm looking for a latin american place that serves pupusas. It's a Salvadoran dish - kind of like a jellydonut-sized hushpuppy filled with seasoned pork, chicken or cheese and topped with spicy cabbage. Not exactly fine dining, but scrumptuous if properly prepared.

I've been combing the latin american restaurants on menupages.com without success. I knew half a dozen places to get them in Washington, DC, but that's a bit of a trek from NYC!!!

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  1. if you go to New York Magazine's website www.nymetro.com and type in Pupusas in the search box you'll see several recommendations for locations in Queens. However, I am also remembering a brief article about an East Village (?) shop that serves this type of food exclusively... and its driving me crazy as I've compeltely forgotten what its called. I'm sure someone here will remember though...

    1 Reply
    1. re: Tumnus

      You're talking -- I think -- about the Caracas Arepa Bar nad 7th St just east of 1st Avenue. Arepas which are similar, but still very different. I've never seen pupuuas in Manhattan.

    2. IF you have a car (or just take a 45-minute train ride) go out to Freeport, LI. There are a bunch of Salvadoran places there, including some within walking distance of the train station.

      1. there's a pupuseria on graham avenue out here in williamsburg. its near the corner of scholes st. its my favorite pupusa spot. bahia restaurant on grand avenue has pupusas as does a new pizzeria close to key food on grand.

        let me know if you want a tour!


        2 Replies
        1. re: misslindsay

          I second the Pupuseria Belen (I think it's called) on Graham. Best I've had in NYC, though not as good as LA or DC. Substantially better IMO than Bahia or the "pupuseria pizzeria" on Grand.

          1. re: Jack Barber

            I like that place and they have more options, but I don't think it's "substantially" better than Bahia. I have not tried the pizzeria yet, it's pretty new isn't it? Is it *bad*, or OK for a quick fix? Wondering because it's slightly more convenient for me.

        2. La Salvadorena up near the Cloisters serves very good ones

          1. fyi: the "spicy cabbage" is called curtido.

            1. Thanks to all. I knew I could count on you hounds!

              To Chowbabe: I'm going to be up around Inwood Park soon - the place you recommended is right on the way! Great!

              To Piney, thanks for the info.

              To Lindsay, thanks for the offer, but I'm not a local hound. I'm currently in culinary exile in a small midwestern city where there isn't a knish, pupusa or anything remotely resembling dim sum to be found for at least a hundred miles. I'm going to be in New York for a week in May doing soils research and, like a typical chowhound, am planning my work itinerary around where I want to have lunch and dinner! I've been to Manhattan and the Bronx a number of times and I'm not one of the 'pigeon people', I swear. If the offer still stands and you can give me directions by subway/bus - cool.

              7 Replies
              1. re: Digger

                If your stay includes a weekend, a culinary trip to the Red Hook Ball fields in Brooklyn might be in order. Lots of soccer games attract lots of hungry fans. Local immigrant entrepreneurs from El Salvador, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Columbia, etc. set up stands on Sunday (and I think Saturday) selling homemade papusas, mango on a stick, arepas and lots of other things. Knowledge of Spanish is a plus, but my pointed finger has also worked well. If interested, ask for details on the Outer Boroughs board. Someone will know how to go via public transit (bus) if you don't have access to a car.

                1. re: Digger

                  I'm with chowbabe, it's a good place.
                  If you need more info, it's La Cabana Salvadorena on 187th & B'way, diagonally across from Key Food, 212-928-7872.

                  1. re: Alison

                    La Cabana Salvadoria also has a second store tucked in between lehman college and the grand concourse in the bronx.

                    1. re: becky

                      Three years after this post, I'm planning to make a trip to the Bronx location of La Cabana Salvadorena. It's at 3150 Villa Avenue, wich is near Lehman College and at 205th St. Villa Avenue is between Jerome and the Grand Concourse.

                      I'll report my findings. Here's hoping!

                      1. re: becky

                        I visited La Cabana Salvadorena yesterday for lunch. It is a dual level restaurant with a full bar.

                        I ordered three pupusas, two with cheese and one with revueltas (finely shredded porky goodness) for take-out. They came with a drastically huge quantity of curtido and a coffee cup full of the tomato sauce. Through the kitchen window I saw the lady slapping together the pupsas right then. I also heard the magical sound of a Central American lady clapping masa between her hands.

                        It took 15 minutes or so, but I got my pupusas. They were quite big--5 inches across anyway--and excellent. The cheese version, especially, was incredible. A giant amount of molten melting cheese oozed out of the seared masa wrapper. I liked the revueltas, too. They were well flavored and a good counterpoint to the insanely rich cheese pupusas. The curtido was full flavored and not chopped too fine.

                        All in all, a great discovery. Thanks for the tip.

                        1. re: nerdgoggles

                          In BK, 5th Ave btw about 18th and 23rd has several places that sell pupusas. Haven't tried them, because I ate a ton of them in Columbia Heights in DC and they didn't blow me away there. But there's a decent Salvadoran presence on that little strip.

                  2. More charming than La Cabana Salvadorena, just south of the GWB, is El Guanaco: http://www.eatingintranslation.com/20.... Little English is spoken, and your lunch may be accompanied by Spanish soap operas on the TV, but the loroco pupusa I tried was lovely, and my other two antojitos were even better!

                    1. Rincon Salvadoreno 92-15 149th Street, Jamaica, NY 11435.
                      Yummy pupusas and Atol Del Elote!!