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Nov 28, 2006 05:15 PM

Queens Latin American Suggestions

Because I live in Brooklyn, work in Manhattan and don't have a car I rarely get to Queens, and have been missing out on what is clearly the best ethnic food borough. Several months ago I got a group of Manhattan & Brooklyn friends together for a monthly Queens outing. The first 3 we did were Asian: Sripraphai, Spicy & Tasty, & Minangasli. For December we're going for a break from Asian.

If you had to pick one must-visit Latin American restaurant in Queens, for a party of 5 or 6, what would it be. I'll use these suggestions as the basis to check the relevant threads. Thanks.

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  1. I'm a big fan of Taqueria Coatzingo... provided you order from the daily list of specials, written in Spanish on a sheet of paper put at each table. On Sunday I had chicken stewed in a spice I've never even heard of, which tasted as if I were sucking a violet cachou and a copper penny at the same time (but very good, despite the description)

    Apart from that, there are several Brazilian places in Astoria, such as Favela, Malagueta, Brasilianville, there are Argentinian steakhouses, Colombian meat orgies, and Peruvian and Ecuadorian. But if I had to choose one, I'd go for Coatzingo.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Brian S

      Sounds great, but our date is a Tuesday, and I get the impression from your post that the pickings are slimmer on Tuesdays, so maybe we'll try some time we can go later in the week.

      1. re: Peter Cherches

        I'm not sure. Lately I've been going on Mondays, to find ten different specials! But maybe some are left from Sunday. There's always a 20 minute wait for a special, by the way, which means it's not just shoveled up from a steam table.

        Rincon Criollo is also good, but I would recommend only slow cooked stuff, not anything fried or grilled.

    2. Try Pimenton in Astoria or for excellent Cuban-Chinese Dorado in Jackson Heights

      1. Give Malagueta (Brazilian) in Astoria a shot.

        1. We like Manny's Grill(Cuban). It's at 253-22 Union Tpke. in Glen Oaks. Terrific rice and beans, arroz con pollo, oxtail stew. The maduros rellenos (meat stuffed plantains) are awesome too. It's a real family place. Very informal, and inexpensive, so it might not be appropriate for a "big night out." We order take-out from them all the time.

          1 Reply
          1. re: jennielap

            I ate at manny's last tuesday, it is good, but hardly worth the trip from Brooklyn. Sevice stunk. The empanada I ordered never came, and the waitress forgot to tell me that my sandwich came with soup or salad. Tostones came out long before my sandwich and cooled off by the time my sandwich arrived. I called and spoke to Manny, he apologized. The place is really no better then the Jaguar on Fifth ave in Park Slope.
            On the other hand, Tac. Coatz. is great. The al pastor is awesome and everything I order is really tasty. Another good choice is Rincon Criolla on Junction. There are not many real Cuban joints and this place is a real oldtimer. Food is terrific. I'm surprised Brian S did not mention it as he practically wrote an ode to the place a year or so ago.

          2. El Sol is a peruvian gem.