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New to Sunnyside. Need info about EVERYTHING.

So I just moved to Sunnyside and haven't had a chance to explore all that much but was wondering if people have advice on where I can get some good food. Importantly I'm looking for good pizza, good Italian (both delivery and dining), bagels (bacon, egg & cheese), mexican delivery... and just about anything else you can think of. Thanks!

P.S. To pass along some info of my own, don't eat at the Cheesesteak Factory unless your idea of a good time is spending an afternoon on the toilet.

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  1. De Mole for mexican, 45th St and 48th Ave. Excellent tacos and desserts. Get any specials they are serving.

    5 Replies
    1. re: kenito799

      And of course, on Queens Blvd at 43rd Street, there's always Chateau Blanc, a/k/a Castillo Blanco. Nice.

          1. re: ceeceee

            haha...I actually like that gut-bomb of a breakfast sandwich with the hashbrown in it.

            1. re: SunnysideUp

              ooh breakfast au chateau...i usually get a late night/ early morning (4am) crave...at that hour, only belly bombers, chicken rings and cheese sauce will do.

    2. Welcome to one of the best eating neighborhoods in the city! De Mole (formerly El Jarro)is great for delivery or eat in. Don't miss the Tinga de Puebla, a yummy beef brisket stew.

      I like the pizza at Marabella 41st St & Greenpoint(thin crust)and love the foccacia chicken sandwiches. Some of my friends prefer the thick crust at Gabriella's 44th St & Greenpoint where you have a choice of counter or tablecloth service next door. Though I haven't tried it yet, I'm intrigued by the selections at Donato's 50th St & 39th Ave and they have nice outdoor seating.

      For Turkish, a lot of posters have praised Hemsin 39th Pl & Queens Blvd. on the least desirable real estate for restaurants in the hood. I've enjoyed some breakfasts there and really like their lahmacuns. But if you're taking kabobs and dips home for dinner, I'd choose Mangal 47th & Queens Blvd which doesn't look like it cranks out super food but they do. For sit down I'd go to Turkish Grill at 42nd & queens blvd.

      There are a couple of places on the south side of Q Blvd between 43rd and 46th St that have passable bagels. But why not cross the blvd and have an Irish Breakfast at Rose Restaurant? Or wander down the north side of the blvd and try Post Cafe at 40th Street.

      I hope you have strolled through Sunnyside Gardens (I assume if you moved there you would have said so). On Skillman between 46th and 47th Street you will find very decent dining at Bliss Restaurant and Quaint. Posts about these two have been varied on this board but make up your own mind. The people running both establishments are good folk and they are working very hard to bring our community something we don't have. They deserve our support and patience.

      And now for something not quite completely different but interesting. If you want to try Chinese food prepared as if the Chinese restaurant is located in New Delhi, then get over to Tangra Asian Fusion. Order the lollipop chicken first while you navigate the menu and take in a wonderfully garish room. Or try our two, yes two Japanese/Nepalise joints. Yamakaze in that dreaded block between 39th St and 39th pl on Q blvd. Or the newer Yeti at 44th & Q blvd south side.

      I'm tired of typing. Can another hound take over and describe Sidetracks, Horgan's, Aubergine Cafe, Arioshi, Thai Malay Cafe, Chips, Pio Pio Riko ande La Flor?

      I hope you enjoy eating your way through our humble hood.

      4 Replies
      1. re: timmernyc

        I just came back from Mangal. Despite Ramadan, there were quite a few diners, and everyone was speaking Turkish. There were families, with little kids running around grabbing plates and bawling when the waiters tried to take them back. There was a Turkish soap opera on the big TV, and at crucial moments, all the waiters stopped what they were doing to watch how it turned out.

        I got a lamb adana kebab. Two excellent spicy juicy kebabs, rice, salad, and a heap of sesame-studded homemade bread big enough to feed both Cheech and Chong when they have the munchies. And all for $10, tax included.

        1. re: Brian S

          If anyone goes to Mangal be sure to ask for your sandwiches on the homemade Turkish bread (instead of pita). It's a buck or 2 more, but well worth it. And the chicken doner (gyro), and the eggplant salad, and the kababs, wow...

          1. re: Woodside Al

            That bread makes for an enormous sandwich too. No joke.

            1. re: LoDega

              Or just get the platter. You can get a single-kebab platter for only $6.50, and that includes rice and salad as well as homemade bread. An extra kebab is only $3.50 more.

      2. Welcome to the neighborhood! Timmernyc did a great job. I haven't been to all the places he listed on the bottom, but Aubergine Cafe on 50th and Skillman is a cute coffee shop with good sandwiches and decent desserts. A little bit further (I think maybe 51st or 52nd) is La Marjolaine, which is known for its almond croissants and other pastries.

        I also wanted to add the Butcher's Block, on 41st St. just north of Queens Blvd., which is a grocery store/butchers with great dinners - meat and 2 sides for $7.50.

        And I agree with the other posters - run to De Mole, it's our favorite place in Sunnyside.

        Oh, and not a decent bagel to be found in Sunnyside, unfortunately.

        1 Reply
        1. re: emilie01

          I second the Butcher's Block. Small Irish grocery. If you, like me, love candy, tea, coffee and various other sundry items from Ireland and/or the UK, you can get it there. Haven't gotten any yet, but the irish sausage looks great.

        2. El Shatar on 43rd & 43rd is a great little arabic market and food counter.

          1. I second the recommendation for El Shater. I love the little savory pies they sell at the front counter, especially the chicken and the spinach. But I mostly go there to buy boxes of the amazing maamoul cookies - butter cookies filled with various fruit and nut fillings.

            I agree as well that timmernyc did a great job going over many of the neighborhood's highlights, but based on my one visit to Mangal, I have to repectfully disagree about the quality of the kebabs - I don't think they're nearly as good as those at Hemsin or Turkish Grill. Also, Hemsin will make a kebab sandwich on homemade bread for five bucks. Mangal charges an extra buck for homemade bread, bringing the price up to $6.50 - and, as I said, judging from my experience, the ingredients inside will not be as good. (On my visit I did have a very delicious eggplant salad, however.) Also, for a few years, Turkish Grill has had the best baklava I've ever eaten. It was not as good on my last visit, and I'm hoping this is not a trend. They also have fabulous tea.

            By the way, you may have noticed there are a million takeout Chinese places in the neighborhood. Most are pretty bad, but I think Wah Yeung (43rd Ave., between 43rd and 44th Sts.) is decent. Very good hot and sour soup, greaseless eggrolls.

            4 Replies
            1. re: lvecch

              sometimes the proprietor of mangal ignores me when i go in, which irritates me, but i have to say that the roast eggplant salad is the best i have ever eaten, and that is a dish i have had all over the world. i brought it to a party at the dakota in manhattan and people swooned. their homemade bread is good, too. i like the lamb kebobs. skip the brown top custard dessert. as fast food, you can't beat it. not much in the atmosphere department.

              1. re: NickAlex

                I went for the first time today, coincedently, and got some pretty dry lamb and chicken kabobs. Is it my fault for not ordering cucumber & yogurt or hummus or something?

                1. re: Widmark

                  what time did you go? the best time is to go Saturday late morning - noonish. They usually have some sort of special that day. Never had their kebabs, but their doner kebab (aka shwarma/gyro) is the best you can get in NYC, imo. You have to go early for that stuff though, they run out of doner pretty fast. And agree with NickAlex, their meze are amazing. Try their mixed meze plate.
                  The guys who run it are actually pretty nice, you just need to show some curiosity about their food - ask them about their soup of the day, ask about unfamiliar foods you see, get a cold airan from the cold case (turkish yogurt drink), talk soccer (soccer talk works in most non-american restaurants btw) and maybe next time you won't end up with dry kebabs!

                  1. re: welle

                    def. went too late...wanted schwarma but they were already out. I'll give it another shot.

            2. - Have never had the kebabs at Mangal, but all the salads they have up front are delicious and a steal at (i believe 3 or 4 bucks). I especially like the white bean salad (can't remember the name), which is perfect when mixed in a pita with their hummus.

              - For an egg and cheese sandwich, I like the 24 hour bagel place on the South side of QB. Can't remember the exact location, but I think it's next to the Avon store.

              - To sound like a broken record, De Mole is the best Mexican here and my favorite restaurant in the hood. Even though I live on the North side of QB, I rarely hesitate to make the 15 minute walk over (though they deliver, too. and even the delivery guy is so nice!)

              - Tofu and Noodles on QB is great for Soon du bu and in my weekly rotation once the weather turns cooler

              - Aubergine is a cute-ish spot, though I find myself less in love than when they first opened. I think their food has gone downhill somewhat. I don't think turn the food fast enough to keep it fresh. Even their salads have been a letdown on recent visits. It's def my favorite place for coffee and a chocolate macaroon.

              - La Flor is also a favorite. There have been some dissenting opinions lately, but I have been enjoying their food for the past 5 years. Especially love their chocolate chocolate cookie, their bread basket, shrimp tacos, salads, stuffed acorn squash, fish specials, etc.

              - We also like the Chinese place lvecch posted about. Their Cantonese wonton soups are pretty darn good, too. I always get with spinach (though maybe not these days) and soft tofu.

              Enjoy the neighborhood!

              4 Replies
              1. re: tracyk

                Thanks. This will be a huge help. I'm definitely looking forward to checking out the Turkish places near me. The one thing I haven't seen in this post (or others) is a decent place for Italian food. I know of Sapori D'Ischia, but I'm looking for some decent Pasta to order in as the weather turns south. Has anyone been to Dazie's? And do they deliver?

                1. re: Snarls

                  Sadly, Sunnyside is not strong on Italian. I've never been to Dazie's - looks old school red sauce Italian to me. I think you'd probably be better off opening a jar of Rao's sauce (they carry it at Met - 43rd Ave., between 44th and 45th Sts.) and boiling up some Barilla.

                  1. re: Snarls

                    Sapori is great.... Well worth the money!!!! The restaurant is set in an italian store, so dont e surprised if u can do your gorcery shopping while eating!!!

                    Dazies should be burned to the ground...Probably the worst service, and the food is not worthy of the $$$

                    1. re: Snarls

                      Sapori D'Ischia is good, but pricey IMO. They do things like not offer any tap water, so you are forced to buy bottled water. Wines are somewhat pricey.

                      A great place to go on an expense account, but I'd rather go to a good Italian rest in the city for the prices they charge here.

                  2. we love donato's on 39th ave and 50th or 51st street. great old school italian. think lady and the tramp.
                    so cute and really good.
                    dazie's is overpriced and i could swear that two times i've had dishes that had been micorwaved in there!

                    1. i really am a fan of quaint on skillman btwn 46th and 47th. really nice atmosphere and great food.

                      1. Welcome to the neighborhood. You'll love living here -

                        By the Movie Theater On Queens Boulevard, you can select from Chips and Horgans.
                        (1) My favorite Mexican is Chips on Queens Boulevard. Everything is tasty.
                        (2) For the absolute best fish and chips, go to Horgans.

                        I think Arioshi is the best Japanese in the neighborhood and is often frequented by Japanese speaking people. The Miso Mackerel is delicious. I have not tried the Nepalese sushi restaurantyet.

                        I think Daizies is better than Donato (Pizzaria and Restaurant). If I want to eat in an Italian restaurant, I don't want it to be a two-in-one restaurant-pizzaria. I'm sorry but when I want pasta with broccoli, I expect Broccoli Rabe not regular Broccoli. There were so many flies in Donato and the Caesar Dressing was made out of Hellman's mayonaise-- just terrible. Mario's at 43-04 47th Ave is a decent Italian restaurant.

                        Tasty Thai and Gray Point, south of Queens Boulevard, are good Thai restaurants.

                        Natural Tofu on the southside of Queens Boulevard is good for Korean tofu dishes.

                        Quaint and Bliss are decent choices. Service is spotty and selection is limited. But the outdoor dining options at both are nice.

                        For the tried and true, Starbuck's just opened on Queens Boulevard between 46 and 47 Street on the Northside of the Boulevard.

                        There is no good Chinese restaurant in Sunnyside and I know what I'm talking aobut. It's just terrible takeout food. If I had to choose one, it's Wah Yeung.

                        Wishing you good eating...

                        1. Echoing, dissenting, adding:

                          -We moved from Astoria to Sunnyside Gardens 5 years ago and tried Dazie's the first week and thought it paled in comparison to the better Italian spots in Astoria. We haven't been back. I can't honestly recommend order-in Italian from anywhere in Sunnyside, either. We've tried them all... Ariel's was probably the best but they closed.

                          -Local pizza is pretty blah; we're a block from Donato's and would not recommend it. Rosa's in Maspeth (a quick drive but otherwise tough to get to) for the grandma pie or go to LIC for either Bella Via or Manetta's? Much better pizzas but they're not in Sunnyside... I just don't have a fave pizza in Sunnyside.

                          -Looking forward to checking out the Chinese place recommended, as we've settled on Mr. Wonton on Q Blvd for our Chinese deliveries. Mr. Wonton is serviceable, nothing more.

                          -La Margoline does some nice work. I don't know that I've ever had bad bread there, and all of the fruit tarts (there's a couple different types) they do are spot-on... Nice brioche... Just a very reliable bakery, other than maybe some of the cheesecakes or more elaborate frosted cakes, which are fine but not as good as everything else in the place. A neighborhood highlight, for sure.

                          -Aubergine: Welcome addition, decent sweets and muffins, decent coffee, but I've never been a fan of their sandwiches.

                          -Is the 24 hour bagel place on Queens Blvd called "H and D Bagels?" Not sure, it's only ok, but I had just from the oven bialys there a few weekends ago that were a knockout. I'll go back soon to see if that's a regular feature.

                          -What's the deal with Alpha Donuts? The first time I went they were fresh from the oven and mindblowing, but since then I've been back ten times and they never have been as fresh (not stale, but not mindboggling, either). Is there a right time of day to score the fresh donuts?

                          -Turkish Grill has changed owners (and names) at least a couple times, no? Saw bugs in the dining room there once, but it was previous ownership. Hemsin's lahmacuns are excellent, yes--best "pizza" in Sunnyside.

                          -Bliss and Quaint. The former was somewhat more ambitious culinarily than it is now, though it's still a pretty artful place, food-wise. I guess I would describe it as "New American" and I think my only knock with Bliss is the atmosphere. Service has been erratic at times, the room seems to lack any vibe at all, despite Dorothy's friendliness... I think I accept this more at cheaper joints but given Bliss's culinary efforts, it would be nice if the atmosphere matched up to them. Quaint is a bit smarter, I think. More of a "bar and grill" feel, a somewhat more limited menu, a bit cheaper--accordingly you forgive them the service mishaps and the acoustic issues pertaining to the dishwasher and kitchen being around 3 ft. away from the dining room, with very little sound insulation... Both Bliss and Quaint have new backyards dining set-ups that are pleasant, too. And both have good burgers, though I'm not sure Quaint still has theirs on the menu? Also, the mac and cheese app at Quaint is excellent and definitely an entree portion for most people...

                          -Arioshi is fine but it just makes me want better. Watawah in Astoria is the only sushi within a 20-minute drive that demands repeat business, I think.

                          -Chips (Mexican) is fine. Definitely aiming at the gringos. It's tolerable but nothing special.

                          -Butcher's Block: Sunday, go for the baked ham, which is on special that day and spectacular. I'd argue a hero with BB's frshly carved baked ham is one of the five best items to eat in all of Sunnyside.

                          -Lowery Liquor and Wine on Q Blvd has plenty of nice deals on interesting wines and they're basically across the street from Hemsin; if memory serves the are BYOB... Lowery is really the only good liquor store in the neighborhood...

                          -Copper Kettle on Skillman is a decent Irish pub/grill. The help is friendly, the room is spacious, it'll do.

                          -There's a new ice cream joint just north of the 52nd St. subway stop; it's unimpressive.

                          -La Flor is in Woodside, not Sunnyside, right?

                          -Grass is always greener: The best 3 or 4 restaurants in Woodside, Astoria, and LIC are ALL better than anything Sunnyside has to offer, other than De Mole? Is that too harsh from me? It's certainly still a good neighborhood to eat in, but I have to admit for me a big part of the appeal of Sunnyside is the proximity to those other neighborhoods. Sripraphai and Spicy Mina are within walking distance. Sapori D'ischia, too. The best of Astoria and LIC, under a 10 minute drive.

                          -Question for the group--what's the best delivery option in Sunnyside, other than De Mole? If you had to have one meal delivered to you in Sunnyside, what would it be?

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: MarcInSunnysideGardens

                            i order from ariyoshi a bit. the sunnyside roll with mayo...oh yummy!

                            1. re: MarcInSunnysideGardens

                              I forgot Alpha Donuts, good suggestion. I think they usually put out a fresh batch sometime after 4:00 pm - I usually hit it around 6:00 pm, and the racks are always full.

                              With all due respect to the other posters, I agree about Ariyoshi leaving one wanting more. I do, however, like the bagel place. As for delivery, for me it's usually Wah Yeung.

                            2. Graypoint is a little sketchy. I ordered takeout from them and in one of the containers there was a strange looking rainforest dwelling insect. They were very nice about redelivering a bug-free version, but by that point, I was pretty turned off. Can't recommend any Chinese in the nabe, but for Japanese, I second the Ariyoshi recommendation.
                              I really like Donato's food. Their salads are quite good, as is the alfredo and penne vodka pasta dishes. Good tiramisu. Sapori D'ischia is a standout as well. More authentic Italian cuisine, interesting atmosphere, good wine. I feel that Dazie's is a ripoff. Food is expensive, lots of waiters attend to you, but it's all a facade. Too much fluff, not enough substance. Mario's is a nice unassuming Italian place as well. Their pasta carobanara stands out in my mind.

                              1. I really love the burger at P.J. Horgan's. Even though it doesn't show up on any "Best of" lists, it's my favorite in the city.

                                Other good points about the aforementioned Butcher Block is that it carries a lot of Irish and British sweets and grocery items.

                                The mini-chain Mama's Empanadas on Greenpoint between 42nd and 43rd streets is great. Delivery is fast and friendly and they have 35 kinds. Some new ones I've enjoyed are the very non-traditional Polish, with kielbasa and sauerkraut and the Italian Sausage, with peppers and onions. Try the creamy pink dipping sauce. They also have a fiery green one and mild, thin red salsa. There are a few stools for dining.

                                And don't forget the boys from Puebla and their taco truck most late nights in front of the Courtyard Pub and the Northfork/Greenpoint bank on the southwest side on QB and 41st Street.

                                It's been mentioned before, but the Natural Tofu place on QB and 40th (SE) is great for bubbling iron pots of tofu and even prepared bbq, like kalbi, for those who don't want to go through the trouble of doing it yourself.

                                Pizza in Sunnyside is plentiful and mostly disappointing. If you do find something good, it probably won't be the next time you order it. I'm amazed at the inconsisitency. I'm keeping my fingers crossed, but a menu was slipped under my door from Mamakina on 46-19 48th Ave in Woodside. So far, it's the best pizza delivered in Sunnyside, in my opinion. Consistently good with a nice thin crust that actually has a rounded, yeasty, charred flavor and the rest of the ingredients are of better quality than the other local joints.The closest thing I've come to from my Northern New Jersey days. (For those of you not from there, trust me....the pizza made by transplanted Bruculinos to the suburbs is superior -- another discussion, perhaps).

                                For all the Romanian places in the neighborhood, I still haven't gone to Harmony 2, which is right next door to me. I know it's just my perception, but it doesn't feel welcoming to non-Balkans. I woulds appreciate a report if anyone has eaten there.

                                Sitting at a stool for breakfast and watching the short-order choreography at New Post on 40th and QB (NE) is a lot of fun. Good, honest coffee shop food and some great Mexican additions like chilequiles. Forget about bacon, egg and cheese on a bad bagel elsewhere and get it on a hard roll here. These guys work really hard. Just don't order any cake. It's typical outsourced diner stuff and is sometimes not fresh. So difficult getting good desserts in Sunnyside!

                                As for sit-down Italian, you've seen the other posts. Not very promising. However, Mario's on 47th Ave and 42nd Street (SE) is a nice, cozy evening out for Italian/American food. It beats the empty pretension and the cheap cynicism of some of the other neighborhood places. That said, the usual suspect chicken entrees (francese, marsala) at Donatos are good.

                                If you haven't been to the earlier incarnations of the space that now houses Tangra Asian Fusion (Bombay-style Chinese), then you have to go and bring friends. It's garishly spectacular. The food is good too. Order a lassi because it can be very spicy. They will alter it for you. Lollipop chicken is a must.

                                El Comelon on Greenpoint between 41st and 42nd just underwent a renovation and is very nice inside for dining. The have a large take-out menu for huge portions of Colombian and other Latin American dishes.

                                A walk up Greenpoint Avenue from 41st to 48th Street is a fun exploration of Mexican, Central and South American groceries, bakeries, taquerias and snack stands.

                                Some of the Korean fresh fish markets also do great fish and chips (believe it or not) with their catches of the day.

                                Here's a Chowhound discussion on rotisserie chicken in Sunnyside: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

                                I'm looking forward to trying the new bakery cafe on Skillman between 46th and 47th across from Quaint. Not sure if it's finished yet. It had been an okay Romanian-owned bakery.

                                While I haven't experienced the lower GI distress you had, I would stay away from most of the menu at Cheesesteak Factory. However, they make a pretty authentic steak with whiz and onions. As passable as any of the recently touted Philadelphia-style cheesesteak places in Manhattan.

                                Can't wait to try De Mole because I always liked El Jarro. It's really a very cool looking place on a very nondescript strip.

                                With the excitement over the area's first Starbucks, I must mention a pleasant little coffee bar/lounge called Daily Grind on QB and 30th Place (SE). It's very comfortable with ample seating, couches, internet terminals and a back room with a fireplace. It serves breakfast, sweets and light food such as crepes and sandwiches along with a large selection of coffees, teas and coffee drinks. It's a nice addition to the south side of the Boulevard for those of us who don't live in Sunnyside Gardens.

                                You can't mention coffee in Sunnyside without citing the venerable Baruir's.

                                Thanks to this discussion, I will try Wah Yeung for delivery. But if you haven't, hop on the 7 and take it to the last stop on Main Street and explore Flushing for food that will transport you to everywhere Chinese cooking has influenced: the mainland, Hong Kong, Taiwan, the territories, Malaysia...it goes on. Check for Chowhound discussions on that. You are lucky enough to live in Sunnyside. Take advantage of the convenience of the 7 train and you will be rewarded. That's what makes living here so great. Save room so you can stop at the taco truck on your way home.

                                Sunnyside Taco Truck article:

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: SunnysideUp

                                  CORRECTION: Daily Grind is on Queens Blvd. and 39th Place (SE), not 30th. Sorry for the typo.

                                  Also, forgot to mention Arsi's Pateseria on 47th Ave between 39th Place and 40th Street. It's a tiny place run by a husband and wife (Anatolian Turkish, I believe) and they sell great homemade treats such as a variety of burek (borek) or phyllo pies with meat, cheese and mushrooms, as well as salads and deli items. They also have sweets, pastries, cookies and baklava. I also saw a sign the other day for cannoli (?). I love my diverse neighborhood!

                                  1. re: SunnysideUp

                                    ANOTHER CORRECTION: I keep calling it Daily Grind when it is actually, THE GRIND.

                                  2. It's been 3 years since I moved out of Sunnyside, but I remember the freshly baked empanadas at El Buen Sabor on 46th and Queens Blvd were really good. I didn't really realize quite HOW good they were until I moved to Jackson Heights where there are far too many of those stale yellow reheated things...

                                    Starbucks moved in?! Wah! Please please patronize Baruir's on 40th and Blvd -- Maybe they won't need help managing the competition from Starbucks, but then again, maybe they do. Starbucks is the kind of place that if I need a coffee and they're right there, then sure, I'll go. But Baruir's is the kind of place that I'll hop on a train and travel half an hour to get to.

                                    Also, I kind of think that the cheesesteaks at the counter outside of Home Depot on Northern Blvd. are pretty tasty. They practically make it worth it to go to Home Depot.

                                    5 Replies
                                    1. re: annamatic

                                      Rocco's is the name of the sausage/cheesesteak place. Baruir's drip coffee is just not that good. They use a drip pot that they clearly don't clean that often, and it's of variable strength. I buy my beans from Baruir, and a couple Armenian products, but I never really liked their brewed coffee.

                                      No one's yet mentioned the two Nepalese/Japanese places, Yamakaze and Yeti, both solid choices.

                                      No one's yet mentioned Tangra, which is a nice place (if not the best way) to enjoy Hakanese-Indian.

                                      And no one's mentioned Rose for breakfast, *the* Irish diner to go to. Owned by the brother of the guy who owns Butcher Block.

                                      1. re: Monkey Man Jake

                                        Yamakaze, Yeti, Rose and Tangra were all mentioned by timmernyc on the second reply to this discussion. Yamakaze, Yeti and Tangra were also mentioned in subsequent replies, but they all deserve repeated postings. I'm interested in reading up on the Nepal/Japan connection since they are not geographically linked.

                                        1. re: SunnysideUp

                                          Of course by "no one" I mean "lots of people." I don't understand what the confusion was.

                                      2. re: annamatic

                                        Yeah, I was not too happy to see Starbucks moving in. When in the city, it's sometimes inevitable to cave in, but in Sunnyside, it's just not the right fit. The coffee from the Grind is decent and it's a nice, friendly place. Also, the iced coffee from the corner market on 46th and Skillman is delicious.

                                        1. re: wallywalnuts

                                          Count me among the happy. I need nice clean places to sit in the neighborhood that are not pubs. And there's only so often I can walk out of my way to Aubergine (which I do regularly). It's not a chain I disdain.

                                      3. With all the discussion of Dazie's, I think it's worth mentioning that it may be the only place to get a good cocktail in Sunnyside. And, a couple of nights a week, there is a piano player. The food's not bad but I agree it is expensive. Usually we'll have a quick one at Dazie's and then move on somewhere else, like the Japanese down the block.

                                        Agreed on the excellence of De Mole, Butcher's Block, Hemsin, El Buen Sabor, Natural Tofu, El Shater, Alpha Donuts,....

                                        The two Thai restaurants didn't excite me, and I'm over Ariyoshi. It's okay for a neighborhood night but leaves me wanting. I am fond of Horgan's even though the food isn't much (I'm not a hamburger gal). For Mexican, I also like Azteca, on Greenpoint & 47th (bring your earplugs) and the taco wagons -- the one on QB& 41st definitely whomps those at 46th. I also like the Colombian restaurant (forgot the name) on Greenpoint next to Klein's florist, usually for takout soup combos. It's one of the only quick takeout options in the neighborhood, too.

                                        And FYI Harmony II Romanian was very nice to us non-Romanians.

                                        10 Replies
                                        1. re: Up With Olives

                                          Thanks. Good to know about Harmony ll. Now I'll have to go.

                                          1. re: SunnysideUp

                                            Thanks again everyone. I have my first free non-unpacking weekend coming up and I look forward to trying everything out.

                                            1. re: Snarls

                                              Now that you have been here a couple of weeks, anything to report?

                                              1. re: SunnysideUp

                                                One month down and here's what I have...

                                                De Mole (formerly El Jarro) is probably the best Mexican food I've had in the city. Unbelievable takeout and they are more than willing to mix some ingredients up upon request. Great Guacamole and the best quesadillas I've had. Everything comes with pico de gallo (as the lord intended) and I just don't have a bad thing to say. I'm looking forward to heating up a Burrito when i get home tonight in fact.

                                                Butcher's Block is great. Their "pre-prepared" food is perfect for my schedule and I've enjoyed cooking and eating everything from the gaelic chicken to the stuffed pork chops. Freshest food I've seen in the city.

                                                Haven't really found a great pizza place yet, though if I had to pick one I'd say that Skillman's Famous is probably the best I've had. Still, there were 4 places within spitting distance of my manhattan apt that were better.

                                                Bagels have been a disappointment but Alpha Donuts has a decent breakfast sandwich and the Rose Restaurant and the Diner on the 40th and QB have delicious breakfast food.

                                                Baruir is a nice change of pace from the deli and DD coffee I'd become used to.

                                                Not real impressed with NY Style Eats but the convenience of having that menu available is great.

                                                Haven't ventured out to Quaint, Bliss or Sapori D'Ischia but I do plan on it. I've actually had decent success with Chinese though I must admit that I'm not all that picky and could live on Sweet & Sour Chicken alone.

                                                That's all I have for now but i'll report back soon. I'm heading to PJ Horgan's for a burger this weekend. Hope it lives up to the hype!

                                                1. re: Snarls

                                                  I tried nachos at De Mole on Sunday and they were pretty fabulous... The key with everything I've had there is the lightness, relative to other Mexican food in NYC... Not nearly as gutbusting as what I'm used to...

                                                  1. re: Snarls

                                                    My big problem with this neighborhood is that it does poorly what other nabes do well: pizza and chinese food!

                                                    1. re: Monkey Man Jake

                                                      True, but you are a reasonably short subway ride away from the best Chinese food in the city in Flushing. And if you have a car only a couple of minutes away from very good Chinese (and Vietnamese and Indonesian) food in Elmhurst.

                                                      The pizza I can't help you with. The nearest decent ones seem to be up in Astoria or out in Forest Hills.

                                              2. re: SunnysideUp

                                                Has anyone been to Transilvania? That sign "Home of Dracula!!" always gets me. The decor, imitation Transylvanian inn, looks quite spiffy. There are some ambitious high prices entrees, but you can get something made with sausage and cabbage for $10. I didn't eat there (just looked in) but I would go there if it's good.

                                                1. re: Brian S

                                                  Brian, I've never been to Transilvania but I know people who did and they say the food is only decent. Apparently people go there mainly for the entertainment.
                                                  If you try it, please report back.
                                                  Right now my fav romanian place is Acasa, I wrote about it a couple of weeks back.

                                                  1. re: RedVelvet

                                                    I went yesterday and Acasa is wonderful! Can't wait to go back.


                                            2. Wow--I must try De Mole this weekend. I never went when it was El Jarro, but it sounds as good, if not better, with the new name.

                                              As for PJ Horgan's, I do recommend their burgers, but the chicken pot pie is also amazing--delicious flaky crust on top--if you go in for that sort of thing.

                                              I agree about the disappointing burgers and Chinese. I know Flushing is nearby but part of the awesomeness of NYC is having fantastic food just steps (or a delivery guy) away from your door. Wah Yeung's egg rolls are great, but I find their dumplings--one of my staples--lacking.

                                              As for coffee, I know it's a chain, but I must put a plug in for the DD on QB and 46th. The counter is always clean, the staff ready to please, the line humming even at rush hour. And you really can't beat DD's iced coffee. (Though Irving Farm at Aubergine and that new market on 46th and Skillman are certainly good--gotta try Barouir...)

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: janbrady

                                                "I must try De Mole this weekend. I never went when it was El Jarro, but it sounds as good, if not better, with the new name."
                                                -- It's exactly the same. The name was changed due to a trademark dispute.

                                                "As for coffee, I know it's a chain, but I must put a plug in for the DD on QB and 46th. "
                                                Oh, absolutely. The gals there are amazing during rush hour. I commend them.

                                                And a word on the service at Starbucks, well two: very friendly. I wonder if these are imports from Seattle right now, but these guys are efficient, friendly and sound like they have English degrees.

                                              2. FOR MANHATTANITES (like me)

                                                Over the past few days I've been visiting some of the places on this list. One thing I didn't realize from these posts is how close all these places are to the subway! Usually the 46 St stop of the 7 train. Queens Boulevard is like 45 Avenue, there is no 44 or 46, so 48, and De Mole, is just two short blocks away. Skillman, a delightful treelined avenue that has a definite small-town feel, is also two blocks away, in the other direction (north), so you can get to places like Bliss and Quaint, both aptly named in light of Skillman's charm, within five minutes leisurely stroll. And if you want a long but pleasant hike, you can follow either Skillman or the train tracks to the 74-Roosevelt superstation and catch the E, F, V, G, R or 7 train.

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: Brian S

                                                  Apologies in advance if this comes off a little, or more than a little, cranky. If you're a Manhattanite, and you come to Sunnyside, I recommend against going to Bliss or Quaint. There are countless places in Manhattan that try to do what Bliss and Quaint do, and, let's face it, many do it better. This is similar to the recent "top 5 in Astoria" discussion that briefly mentioned JJ's (and I countered with Watawa). While they may be the two best sushi joints in Astoria, if you're visiting Astoria to eat a meal, neither of those two perfectly fine restaurants are amongst Astoria's top 5, and neither are particularly delicious when compared to the best of their kind in either Manhattan, Brooklyn, or a lot of other places.

                                                  1. re: MarcInSunnysideGardens

                                                    It doesn't come off cranky at all. Something I've noticed that you won't find in Manhattan... Sunnyside has a lot of Irish places, mostly bars, that seem to be real Irish family bars, not the imitation ones you'll find in Manhattan. McGuinness on QB seems to get the crowds; I had a drink there years ago and found it was indeed packed with amiable families.

                                                2. Un "slider" avec les pommes frites.
                                                  Avec le Coca-Cola.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: dw438

                                                    none of that americanized catsup for you... Only the finest sweet mayonnaise will do..eh?

                                                  2. Hi Snarls.

                                                    The other place that people rave about (with justification) is Sripraphai (thai) in Woodside. It's only a couple minutes on the 7 & what a delight.

                                                    1. I am surprised no one mentioned Oki on QB & 46th Street. Granted the quality of the fish has not been consistent for the past couple of weeks.. much to my dietary dismay.. but when Oki is on.. they are on.. I mean I can't imagine living these past two years without a Happy Roll or a Spicy Salmon Hand roll.. Ariyoshi has the cute menu but Oki has the potential to be great. Go to Yamakaze for soups and noodles..

                                                      I second everything on De Mole.. formerly El Jarro. The menu is exactly the same as is the quality.. they just changed the name. Enchildas Verdes con Pollo always delivers.. and the Tres Leches is a heavenly dessert... my boyfriend pops a lactaid or two just so he can indulge in the awesomeness. Chips (next to the movie theatre) is also a good option... their black bean puree.. which must be cut with sour cream is quite good.. Oh yes... and The HAAB! This place is so unassuming I missed it for quite some time.. Its this little Mexican cafe on the corner of 47th Ave and 48th Street. Great for breakfast or lunch/early dinner. People are so nice! They do not get as much business as they should!! Its not very big.. but I suggest the Haab Omelette.. complete with chorizo and beans.. early in the morning.. so so good!

                                                      As for Chinese.. it sure is lacking.. I will have to try Wah Yeung but I would also suggest New China Taste on 46th Street at 47th Ave. Not greasy at all.. and overall a tasty chinese option.

                                                      And I love Rose's Restaurant! (QB & 45th next to the OTB) Especially for breakfast.. Love me some Farmer's Breakfast or the Irish Omelette. Always friendly.. always delish.

                                                      The only thing I wish the hood had is vietnamese because I am obsessed.. but just as other folks said.. when the feeling comes upon me for banh mi or other viet treats... I just hop in the car or on the train!

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: majorkong79

                                                        I'll keep making this point even though I may be getting tiresome. I think it's easy to read the above and think that Oki is in the same league as De Mole. They're not. How many better Japanese restaurants in New York are there than Oki? 200? More? Probably more. How many better Mexican restaurants are there than De Mole? 10? Less? Probably less. Oki may be one of the top two places in Sunnyside for sushi, but that only speaks to just how weak Sunnyside is for sushi...

                                                      2. Snarls...welcome to the neighborhood!!!

                                                        Here's my quick rundown...

                                                        BLISS on 46st & skillman..(American food..New chef, nice garden, one of a handful of decent sitdown restaurants for the area..Give it a shot. Dorothy, the owner is nice)
                                                        QUAINT on skillman btwn 46 & 47...(American Bistro fare.. This restaurant is run much better. Tom the restaurant owner has many years of experience in the bizness, so his wine list, food and overall vibe of the place is better)
                                                        MEDITERRANEO on QB btwn 46 & 47 is decent for pizza and Italian takeout( No frutti del mare, just your usual italian pizza joint fare)
                                                        ARRIYOSHI on QB near 41st(?) is better Japanese than OKI. (Also cleaner)
                                                        CHIPS might be good mexican. (Their food was great when they opened, then declined in quality over time; not sure now)
                                                        LA FLOR on roosevelt & 51(?) is a much better choice. (Nouveau Mexican, but the food is great, the wine is decent for the $$ and VIKO the owner is a fantastic guy... If he is there tell him "CHINO" sent you!)

                                                        TEN FULL (39st & 47th ave?) has decent chinese considering we r not in chinatown..


                                                        A much better alternative (especially for breakfast or lunch) is a diner on Northern Blvd..Cant remember the name, but it is right next door to the SUNOCO gas station, and across the street from Home Depot. OUTSTANDING!!! Its simply a diner that has been there for 40+ years.

                                                        Hope this helps! Email me if u have questions... Hope to see u in the neighborhood!

                                                        1. Oh one other thing...

                                                          this sounds crazy but... If you take the Q60 or Q32 on a weekend morning into manhattan, go down 2nd avenue to 56 or 55 th street, u will find a 24 hour bagel place on the east side of the avenue.

                                                          they have some of the best bagels in NYC (Forget H+H) and it takes maybe 20 minutes at most on a saturday or sunday morning..Something to ponder...

                                                          P.S. Donovan's Pub on 57th(?) & Roosevelt...Best burger in NYC..1/2 price beer and burgers on monday night... (go check it out..trust me.)

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: yorkchu

                                                            Donovans... we keep talking about it, but they keep surprising me in warmth. We hadn't been out in while - my baby is of "that age" where taking the kid out's tough. We took him to Donovan's and right away, the waitress brought him (without our asking) a small monkey dish of mashed potato ("just to keep him occupied, love.") I don't know the town they import the irish waitresses from, but I'm going to visit. That must be the friendliest town on the planet.

                                                            1. re: Monkey Man Jake

                                                              Glad u enjoyed it!!!!! Feel free to send me ann email if u have questions and again welcome to the neighborhood... I have been here 8 yrs and am still getting used to it...

                                                          2. Sunnyside is great if only for the convenience of my beloved but sickening White Castles. If you do get the burgers, make sure you get EXTRA pickles and ketchup to compensate for the almost invisible piece of meat. And yes, having the convenience of eating them at 4am is a true blessing.

                                                            And please do not forget Wendy's...another hot spot of mine.

                                                            But really, Horgans does the best burgers in Sunnyside. Hope you had a chance to get there.

                                                            1. Also, the new pastry/coffee shop Daco Romano (on 46th and Skillman) has a lot of potential... although I know the place that was there before has some loyal followers, they're just starting out and the coffee is good- and cheaper than Starbucks! I like that they stay open until 8:30 or 9, so you can grab a drink and a pastry after dinner... and I've noticed that they'll stay open later if there are people who want to linger. If they make it until the spring, they're thinking of putting a few tables outside, which would be really nice...

                                                              1. Just went to Daco Romano....! And their coffee is terrific! They use Esse beans, from the Segafredo guy. It's a great bean. And it's a pleasant place to sit - hard to find in this nabe, for people who don't drink.

                                                                The Sunnyside NY Yahoo Group:

                                                                1. That's great to hear. I've been meaning to check it out.
                                                                  I was not a big fan of the previous establishment-Zoita.
                                                                  She wasn't very pleasant.

                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                  1. re: wallywalnuts

                                                                    She was always okay, but the place itself -- not very inviting to hang out and have a cuppa joe.

                                                                    1. re: Monkey Man Jake

                                                                      The problem with both, Zoita and Daco Romano, is/was that they're not open early enough. 7am and their metal grid door is still on and locked - that's pretty late by NYC standards especially for a bakery/coffee shop type of place.

                                                                  2. Daco Romano has great Turkish Coffee with plenty of sand on the bottom.

                                                                    Anybody been to TJ's Asian Bistro (on Skillman and 51st)? They don't have a liquor license yet, but the food is top quality and dirt cheap. You can get full lunches for $5-7 and dinners for $10-12. Big portions and fresh fish, plus the place is very clean and the staff is accomodating. Some of the items I tried ordering weren't available, but the 2 lunches and 1 dinner I've had so far have been very good. They deliver too.

                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Jpogrady

                                                                      TJ's is great! I'm so glad it's here!

                                                                      1. re: LoDega

                                                                        Just had it for the first time tonight. The delivery took awhile because their computers crashed. The food was great.

                                                                        Alpha donuts has the best Irish breakfast, with New Post Coffee Shop a close second. The Rose doesn't even compare. Will have to check out quaint. They have $14 mussels and french fries on Mondays.

                                                                    2. A bit more on TJ Asian Bistro.

                                                                      1) This is pretty much a neighborhood place. Meaning, if you don't live in Sunnyside or Woodside, it's not a destination worth a special trip.
                                                                      2) That said, I believe it's the best sushi in Sunnyside or Woodside. A cut above the joints on Queens Blvd that I believe to be overrated at times here.
                                                                      3) Business is "so-so" according to the hostess who I chatted with last night (the place was nearly empty, but it was early, and people were fearing this annoying storm, I imagine). They opened at a tough time of year AND they don't have that liquor license, she acknowledged. Liquor license "soon." How soon? She wasn't sure, but supposedly "soon."
                                                                      4) I like the clever/stylized sushi, and they do a decent job with it. A generous yellowtail jalapeno appetizer, for example. Some of the special rolls work. I realize now that my only beef with the new school sushi is those tempura flakes that keep getting thrown into/onto special rolls. They're just real cloying and Americanized and they really just need to be phased out. A bad sushi trend.

                                                                      Give 'em a shot, instead of those Queens Blvd places, the next time you crave local sushi. And since I have to walk by the place every night on my way home, I'll post as soon as they add the sake and beer to the menu...

                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                      1. re: MarcInSunnysideGardens

                                                                        do they still not let BYO, even without the liquor license? TIA

                                                                      2. I forgot to ask that question, but I'd be surprised if they didn't allow BYO.

                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                        1. re: MarcInSunnysideGardens

                                                                          There was a previous report on this board that they didn't let BYOB

                                                                        2. for smoked meats and butcher products try Sunnyside Meat Market, a roumanian place, on 43rd St between QB and 43rd Ave. Great selection and a bit cheaper than muncan meats in astoria. don't let the language barrier or their apparent gruffness put you off. they are happy to let you try everything and are actually quite helpful. they just don't like to show it too overtly.

                                                                          1. Went to TJ's last night and there's a sign that states BYOB. A couple next to us shared a bottle of cabernet.

                                                                            As for TJ's, I'll give them another chance - but last night was not such a great first experience. 'Nuff said, I'll have an opinion after I try them again.

                                                                            1. I've never tried El Jarro, now known as De Mole, but has anyone had the enchiladas at the New Post Coffee Shop? They can't be beat! Those guys should open a purely Mexican restaurant. All of their Mexican menu items are amazing.
                                                                              La Flor is nice, but I always leave hungry and feeling the price was a bit too high (considering that I'm still hungry...).

                                                                              9 Replies
                                                                              1. re: sunnyside_up

                                                                                Are you serious about New Post? I've read almost nothing but negative things about it on this board, and, not to be rude, but the aromas coming from the place often seem to justify the bad reviews.

                                                                                1. re: lvecch

                                                                                  I'm talking about the New Post Coffee Shop, at the corner of Queens Blvd. and 40th Street.

                                                                                  Perhaps you're thinking of a different place...

                                                                                    1. re: lvecch

                                                                                      This "Sunnyside Up" likes New Post too. The chilaquiles are great. It's always packed on weekends.

                                                                                        1. re: lvecch

                                                                                          Sit in the back, but at the counter. It's fun the watch all the short-ordering going on. I've only ever been on weekend mornings. You may not love it, but it may not be as horrible as you've presumed, either. I'm interested to hear what you think.

                                                                                          1. re: SunnysideUp

                                                                                            OK, Sunnysides, I've finally gotten around to trying New Post's Mexican chow. I expected to like it. I wanted to like it. I didn't like it.

                                                                                            I ordered chicken enchiladas with salsa roja, which came with Mexican rice and refried black beans. Pluses: the enchiladas themselves (chicken filling, tortillas) were tasty, I loved the sliced avocado that adorned the plate, the portions were huge. Minuses: terrible sauce (and way too much of it; the stuff was swimming), stinky cheeses. Now, the cheese issue may be a matter of personal preference (are there regional differences in the preparation of enchiladas? I've never seen cheese crumbled on refried beans, nor have I seen the creamy white cheese that topped the enchiladas), but for me it skewed the experience toward the negative column.

                                                                                            Let me say, finally, that I got my order to go, which may have made a difference in the presentation, if not the taste.

                                                                                            1. re: lvecch

                                                                                              You gave it a fair go. I would say go back and try something else, and please sit at the counter. There are many regional differences in cheese and enchiladas from Tex-Mex to Baja, to the myriad Mexican states. You will find a lot of Pueblan (Poblano) cuisine in Sunnyside, as well as the rest of Queens. They are big meat and cheese eaters. You probably had queso blanco on the enchiladas and queso fresco (or anejo) on the beans.

                                                                                              1. re: SunnysideUp

                                                                                                OK, I'll eventually give something else a go, and I'll go in and soak up the ambiance. As for the cheese, I'm used to something closer to Jack on my enchiladas.

                                                                              2. I love the New Post. I have not had any of their mexican items but I will try them.

                                                                                1. All I ever get from New Post are burgers and Irish breakfast and both are consistently good. On the weekends, a lot of Irish guys eat Irish breakfast there.

                                                                                  1. We stumbled into Pio Pio Riko last weekend and loved it. They put dishes of those roasted corn kernels on the table (canchitas?). There was a wait for the roasted chicken, and we were starving, so we got the potatoes w/cheese sauce (delish) to split as an appy, and two seafood dishes. I'm sure the chicken is great - the place was very simple, but very warm, with good eats.

                                                                                    1. Went there last week - agree that it's loveable.

                                                                                      Try the tostones next time, they're huge and tasty.

                                                                                      1. By the way, thanks everyone for the De Mole recs. I ordered take out from them yesterday (the beef brisket - Tinga) and it was delicious.

                                                                                        1. Just a quick note,..one of the best restaurants in the Sunnyside/Woodise area is LA Flor on Roosevelt @53rd. Incredible inventive food reasonabley priced and casual, friendly service. Only drawback is it is under the el and it is a small dining room, but quality of food ( Sea Bass, Lamb Shank, Steak Frites, Mexican entrees is always amazing......

                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: jimbonyc

                                                                                            La Flor is an amazing restaurant and it's so close to Jackson Heights, which works great for me. I love its location and its look, it adds so much more character. One suggestion would be to relocate the really BRIGHT cake fridge..

                                                                                            1. re: hboogz

                                                                                              The service can be spotty. And it's cash only. The food they serve is great, but the location and the ambiance leave a lot to be desired. . .

                                                                                          2. does hemsin still exist? I was strolling by and didn't see it

                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                            1. re: ethnicbreadz

                                                                                              No, unfortunately it closed at least a year ago (maybe 2). It was my favorite Turkish rest. in the City.

                                                                                            2. chung sol on 49 and queens blvd is the best korean in the nabe
                                                                                              pretty authentic, surprisingly big portions
                                                                                              everyone else is white washed korean

                                                                                              this is the real stuff

                                                                                              1. I've been in Sunnyside for ten years (give or take a couple spent in the UK), and love it. Especially the food. I took two friends to TJ Asian Bistro a couple of weeks ago... the service was great, the sushi was REALLY fresh. and beautifully presented. and incredibly priced. the Sushi Lovers platter was a ridiculous amount of food. the soups were house-made and delicious, the sake menu was beyond the call of duty. Much better than a run-of-the-mill Manhattan sushi joint. so glad it was full on a Saturday night!

                                                                                                TJ Asian Bistro
                                                                                                50-19 Skillman Ave, Queens, NY 11377

                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                1. re: Pointie

                                                                                                  Maybe,add this place as a new topic - I have also heard good things about it and it hasn't got much press here.

                                                                                                2. Sidetracks has amazing sliders! They give you one beef, lamb and turkey in each order along w/a sauce for each (ketchup, yogart and a spicy aoli type thing) and they are just delish. I actually like the turkey the best and I used to hate turkey burgers. Lamb is a close second. They're $11 but I always split w/my friend and they're the perfect bar food. Their pizzas are great too, esp like the Sidetracks pizza w/goat cheese and pine nuts.