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Aug 19, 2008 10:23 AM

food near Elmhurst Hospital - recommendations?

My boyfriend and I are looking for recommendations for tasty, inexpensive food near Elmhurst Hospital in Queens. He is currently doing rotations at there, and the hospital "cafeteria" is a McDonald's, apparently. We are looking forward to eating our way through the neighborhood (there certainly is a lot there!). Any suggestions are very appreciated!

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  1. Just walk out the door and enjoy. Chao Thai, Nusara and 2-3 other newish Thai places as well. 2 so so Viet places, go north and there are many Argie, Columbian, Latin places. Hell, the area is way better than most Manhattan neighborhoods.
    Queens, L.A.M.F.

    4 Replies
    1. re: MOREKASHA

      I wish the Viet places were good enough to be so-so. IMO, Thai Son in JH is so-so and sometimes manages to be a notch or two better than that. The two in Elmhurst aren't even that. With so much great food within 200 yards I can't bring myself to eat at either one anymore.

      1. re: hatless

        Pho Bac can really rock on certain days/specific dishes. It's much more than so-so. But Pho Bat is much worse than so-so. Don't confuse the two!

        1. re: zemilideias

          yep agreed. a large #1 with an order of spring rolls makes a fine meal.

      2. re: MOREKASHA

        Your options are almost limitless, but Nusara and Chao Thai are a great place to start.

      3. heading towards queens boulevard along broadway, you will pass a ton of restaurants; there are great choices just past the park (on Whitney avenue, there is thai and indonesian to be had) as well as in the New York Supermarket Plaza (there is a row of about 6 restaurants, mostly asian/southeast asian).

        heading towards roosevelt avenue in the opposite direction along broadway will smack you right into downtown jackson heights where there are tons and tons of recs, just do a search for indian, tacos, ecuadorian, peruvian, filipino, etc.

        1. Where to begin?

          Your boyfriend has the most enviable of quandries: go in the Elmhurst direction - on Bway towards Queens Blvd - or go in the Jackson Heights direction - on Bway towards Roosevelt Ave. My preference is for any number of excellent Thai in the Elmhurst direction: Ploy, Chao or Nusara are all about 5 blocks away, a quick bus or subway ride. There's also Taste Good Malaysian as well as my favorite stop in Queens for noodles and dumplings, Lao Bei Fang. All five eateries, not to mention two Indonesian, Minangasli and Mee Jakarta, are all concentrated in that same basic area. There are myriad other choices along the way, not to mention some Taiwanese a few blocks up and some scattered Cantonese places.

          Within walking distance is Upi Jaya for Indonesian, which is on Woodside, not to mention an interesting looking Thai right across the street. Thai Son, a Vietnamese, is also very close by. Tibetan Yak is also not too far away.

          Plenty of Mexican and Columbian, as well as, of course, Indian, in the Jackson Heights direction - I'll leave it to others to make recs in these areas, but the choices are dizzying.

          If your boyfriend isn't thrilled with these prospects - do a quick search on Outer Boroughs for all mentioned above, by the way - then I'll gladly pick up a stethoscope and switch jobs with him.

          1 Reply
          1. A friend of mine runs the blood donor program at Elmhurst, and she loves the chicken/lunch deals at "Pollos A La Brasa Mario" on Roosevelt and 81st.

            Here's an online menu:

            When I did my rotation there last semester, I had trouble finding a decent breakfast sandwich. The spot right on the corner of 82nd and Roosevelt is a bit pricey ($4 for an egg and cheese) and the chicken joint around the corner ("Chicken Feast") had a better deal, but it was not the tastiest. If you or your boyfriend find a better breakfast spot, do tell!

            There's also Espresso 77, but that's a few blocks away:

            4 Replies
            1. re: PlomeekSoup

              for breakfast (although, I don't know when his breakfast will actually be) King 5 Noodle has some seriously greasy but delicious food which can beat most ham and egg sandwiches. the egg pancake, any of their roast bing, the congee and cruller, etc. are all good, if not a bit heavy. heading toward roosevelt would offer more off-hour stuff, as the Elmhurst part of Broadway tends to have restaurants with more normal hours.

              1. re: bigjeff

                The King 5 Noodle space seems to be in some sort of transition -- they now have bagels, egg sandwiches and fake Pinkberry-style frozen yogurt. The latter is on the sweet and creamy side -- definitely not just nonfat yogurt with some sugar -- but it's nice to have around anyway. Cheap, too.

              2. re: PlomeekSoup

                Another good breakfast option would be the Chinese/Korean/etc. bakeries scattered along Broadway heading East as well as the one next door to Taste Good, between the two big Asian supermarkets by the park. What better way to start the day than a hunk of angel food cake (or, um, an egg custard tart, or a pork fu bun, or...) and a cup of Ovaltine?

                Well, I suppose some fresh fruit would be a smarter choice, and that can be satisfied very well indeed from the bins on the sidewalk in front of the markets. (The melons they're getting in right now are wonderful, f'rinstance...)

                1. re: hatless

                  In addition to all the choices already mentioned, there is an Argentine restaurant across the street from the ER entrance.

              3. I will be in this area Monday. Can anyone recommend any good Korean restaurants for lunch? I've seen a few in the Jackson Heights direction and was wondering if there are any standouts.

                Many thanks.

                9 Replies
                1. re: gloriousfood

                  We were just at Unidentified Flying Chicken, which is Korean Fried Chicken (many posts are on the board) last night - its about a 5-10 minute walk at 71st and Roosevelt. The Argentine place referred to above is La Fusta and is located on the back side of the hospital on Baxter - the special salad with watercress, shrimp and avocado (with that incredibly tangy lemon dressing) is excellent as is the skirt steak. Dont forget Tacqueria Coatzingo on 82nd - there are incredible Chowhound posts form Chow "All-Stars" on this place - get the specials and not the tacos. Tacos, tacos, tacos. we love to do a taco cart crawl, just walk down Roosevelt and get a Carnita (or whatever you like) at each one - all are good and most are excellent (there is also a great post on Roosevely Avenue cart food on the board). Do they have any more jobs there? I am starting to salivate.........

                  1. re: BillyBob

                    Thanks BillyBob! I've seen the abbreviation "UFC" while I was researching this board and was wondering what that stood for. Now I know.

                    So far, I haven't come across any particular Korean recs in JH, so my choices are currently Upi Jaya, Lao Bei Fang and Zabb Queens.

                    1. re: gloriousfood

                      There's Korean but it's not the neighborhood's strength.

                      Oh! For Malaysian, Taste Good, between the two supermarkets off Broadway, can be insanely good. Haven't had a dud dish yet.

                      1. re: gloriousfood

                        Upi Jaya could be good, but it's kind of pricey, unless they have lunch specials (I've only been for dinner). For quick and cheap Indonesian, you should check out Minangasli or the place next door (I'm blanking on the name, on the same block as Lao Bei Fang). If you're looking for Thai, Zabb is a good choice, but you can also find good Thai at places like Chao, Nusara, Ploy, Boon Chu.

                      2. re: BillyBob

                        As a long time semi regular at T.C. I have to say, you MUST order a taco. The Al Pastor are awesome and as good a version of that item as you will find on Roosevelt Ave. I consider an Al Pastor taco the perfect appetizer to a main course from the specials menu. Enjoy

                        1. re: BillyBob

                          The specials at Coatzingo have been hit or miss, but the tacos have been constantly good since they opened, especially the al pastor and lengua. So go for the tacos, and gamble on the specials. Sometimes the specials are really special. Other times, just not so much.

                          For Korean in the area, try Hae Woon Dae on Broadway/76th. They've been a fairly reliable place, but my most recent visit wasn't so great. I'm not sure if that's a sign of something significant or just bad luck. Here's a post for reference:

                          Carnitas tacos at the stands around Roosevelt also tend to vary by a large degree. It's not all that great. But please, let us know if you find something tanscendent. I like the ones from the Guichos cart (Roosevelt/84th?) and the one from the evening cart at 61st/Roosevelt.

                          1. re: E Eto

                            Thanks for everyone's recs. It's an embarrassment of riches! Since Korean is my #1 choice, I might have to try out Hae Woon Dae, though it sounds like it's on the decline. I'm going to Google some of the other places mentioned here too. Also, I recall reading good reviews on an Asian restaurant under/near Roosevelt Ave. with "Rice" in its name. Does anyone know what this might be?

                            1. re: gloriousfood

                              Edit to say: I just checked out Taste Good's menu (thanks, hatless!) and I think I've found the place I want to go.

                              1. re: gloriousfood

                                rice avenue is terrible. I heard about some hole-in-the-wall korean places (haewoondae was asight when I most recently went); here's a search:


                                would be very helpful if anyone's been to these places or it sounds familiar. apparently they have korean-language only menus, stuff like that; and winter food, for some reason