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Produce and Fruit in Astoria

Jim Leff Feb 2, 2007 04:01 PM

Having given up on produce in Jackson Heights, and not gotten over my trepidations about pickup at Fresh Direct (I'd rather select my own produce, thanks), that leaves Astoria, where I need to be several times per week anyway.

So...is there any one consensus favorite produce source in Astoria? Quality and variety are most important, and organic is prefered (but not necessary).

The fave used to be that corner market on 30th ave around 34th street, but that was years ago...


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    Ida Red RE: Jim Leff Feb 2, 2007 04:14 PM

    What's wrong with Jackson Heights? Have you ever been to any of those mega-Indian produce markets on 37th Ave around 75th or 77th Streets? I think those places are great, although you won't always find "American" produce.
    For Astoria, I also like the two markets on 30th Ave and 33rd/34th Streets.

    1. q
      quentinC RE: Jim Leff Feb 2, 2007 05:08 PM

      Astoria is great for produce. Try United Bros. at 33rd Street and 30th Ave or Elliniki (sp?) just down the block. Both traffic in cheap, but usually quite fresh produce. Elliniki has great herbs (you have to ask for them, since they keep them refrigerated in the back.) Sometimes both places seem to have a run on overstocks or some tired shipment of, say, pints of berries or cherry tomatoes or artichokes or lemons or..., but at these prices, who cares? You might have to be a little flexible since their selection varies. Delightfully far removed from drab supermarkets.

      1. Cheese Boy RE: Jim Leff Feb 2, 2007 06:51 PM

        Some of the Trade Fair produce departments are worth a look. They've gotten better than they were years ago. 2355 Broadway is the one location that comes to mind.

        Key Food, 31st/Ditmars Blvd, will provide you with the quality and variety you want.

        1. j
          jmat RE: Jim Leff Feb 2, 2007 08:12 PM

          Another vote for Elliniki -- wonderful selection, almost always very fresh, terrific prices.

          2 Replies
          1. re: jmat
            Astoria Lurker RE: jmat Feb 3, 2007 11:13 AM

            I walk by Elliniki pretty often and haven't seen it open in months. Are you sure they still exist?

            1. re: Astoria Lurker
              quentinC RE: Astoria Lurker Feb 3, 2007 12:19 PM

              Not the one on 34th which closed a few months ago, but the one nearly next door to United Bros. across from Athens Cafe - pretty sure it's called Elliniki as well...

          2. f
            FAL RE: Jim Leff Feb 3, 2007 09:52 AM

            Jim try Top Tomato on Ditmars Blvd and 34 st or Best Super Market (they are carring some organic's)
            Their are also few good fruit stands on 30 Ave between Steinway st and 31 st

            1. Jim Leff RE: Jim Leff Feb 3, 2007 06:19 PM

              Thanks, all.

              I'm personally not a fan of Top Tomatoes or of the places on 37th Ave at 74th ST...my impression is they're about price rather than quality, and I'm looking for nice stuff.

              Where is Best Supermarket? Are they the only organic source in Astoria?

              2 Replies
              1. re: Jim Leff
                Cheese Boy RE: Jim Leff Feb 3, 2007 07:01 PM

                Jim, this is precisely why I'm directing you to Key Food on 31st/Ditmars. Astoria has a lot of those discount second-rate fruit and vegetable stands where the stuff looks days old and tired. Key Food isn't like that. Their produce is a bit pricey; some of it is organic (certified?, I don't know); and it looks pretty good. Worth a look, don't you think? As I stated in an earlier post; Astoria '... is affordable shopping to accomodate the surrounding community'. (Astoria still consists primarily of working-class people -- most are not looking to purchase Organic produce just yet).

                I hate supermarket produce as much as anybody...but the choices are few where you're looking (unfortunately). I hope somebody can chime in with a surprise location.

                1. re: Cheese Boy
                  Jim Leff RE: Cheese Boy Feb 4, 2007 06:19 AM

                  sorry, Cheese Boy, I missed your reply above. I'll go cheggidout.

                  I'm not looking for particularly fancy/yuppie...just a step or two above drek! :)

              2. f
                FAL RE: Jim Leff Feb 4, 2007 06:19 AM

                Jim and CB
                Try Best Yet Supermakert . They have alot of organic's packaged good and some veggies, fruits,spinach ,, tofu. Plus a whole row of other oragic stuff cookies, grains ,chips etc.It is a nice supermarket . Like the ones outer state. Plus Olive Bar and Sushi Bar.
                Here it the adress19-30 37 th st
                I wish we had a Fairway in Queens , I here a Trader Joes is coming to Metro and Woodhaven Blvd

                3 Replies
                1. re: FAL
                  Cheese Boy RE: FAL Feb 4, 2007 09:11 AM

                  FAL, thanks for the reply. This store seems like it's bringing a little bit of the 'burbs to Queens. I'll be sure to check it out on my next visit.

                  Astoria is overdue for a place like The Garden in Greenpoint, or on a larger scale, a Fairway. What's the deal? Opposition?

                  1. re: Cheese Boy
                    Jim Leff RE: Cheese Boy Feb 4, 2007 12:33 PM

                    The Garden in Greenpoint! I completely forgot about that place! Maybe that's just what the doctor ordered (literally and figuratively) for my produce needs...


                    1. re: Jim Leff
                      FAL RE: Jim Leff Feb 4, 2007 03:33 PM

                      There is a great fruit stand on Graham and Metro

                2. m
                  megc RE: Jim Leff Feb 4, 2007 06:41 AM

                  There's a little produce market on 23rd Ave between 31st and 29th Street that I've admired for some time. The produce almost always looks good. Also, saw the produce at the Bravo on 34th Ave near 35th Street and it looked good, too. Sometimes the produce at the market under the Ditmars subway stop looks good and often there are great deals there. Wish the produce at Fresh Start was in a little better shape, as they sell organic stuff.

                  Love the veggies from the Hellgate CSA when it's going.

                  1. f
                    FAL RE: Jim Leff Feb 4, 2007 11:55 AM

                    No one has marketed Astoria period. Right now Astoria in buliding up . I here that Trader Joes is coming to Forest Hill area on Metro and Woodhaven. We will wait and see

                    1. r
                      Rover RE: Jim Leff Feb 4, 2007 04:04 PM

                      Elliniki is great - on 30th Ave between 32nd and 33rd Street. They had organic fresh dates this Fall which were AMAZING. And as been stated, United Bros. on the corner is great too, if not as exotic as Elliniki. Both sold Quinces this Fall too, which was very exciting.
                      For strict organic produce I recommend the health food store on Broadway between 30th and 31st streets, and Sai Organics on 30th Ave around 36th Street. I bought the best Kale I've ever had at the Broadway store the other night.

                      1. r
                        Rover RE: Jim Leff Feb 4, 2007 04:05 PM


                        1. y
                          Yaxpac RE: Jim Leff Feb 5, 2007 11:46 AM

                          Elliniki, 30th ave b/w 32 and 33rd. I think they have much much better stuff than United Bros. I think they have the best produce in all of Astoria.

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