- MOREKASHA Oct 24, 2008 02:14 PM
Heard they closed. No surprise and no great loss.
I think that this thread is a bit unfair. We went with a small group on their final night, ordered the entire menu, and enjoyed everything. Pork and grits, venison, okra, brussel sprout salad, cheesecake. The restaurant was unique in New York and will be missed. As long as you expected the quirky service, it made for a great time.
On a recent trip to Portland we ate at Le Pigeon and (in the most complimentary way), we felt that it was very "Brooklyn." By that, we meant Queen's Hideaway. I hope she will be able to reopen somewhere soon.
1) It reportedly closed because of a rent dispute. I always went early when it wasn't full but they had a lot of fans and business was fine, from what I understand. In other words, yes, it's a surprise they closed.
2) The service was bad, no doubt. One great thing about going there early was that it was much, much less of a problem when the joint wasn't full. In general, I find that service is mediocre in so many places when they're packed. But it would get really bad at Q Hideaway, no doubt.
3) Additionally, it wasn't cheap. This is IMO the big reason it never saw much love on this board. If it's gonna be pricey, people want everything to be nailed, which is understandable.
4) That said, I really liked the food, as did so many people. Liza Queen, IMO, had a equation that went something like: locally sourced food+comfort food+chaos and it somehow ended up unique and sometimes it was even knee-buckling. I ate there a bunch over the summer and the girl was on her game--always in the kitchen, always reinventing the menu, always pushing things pretty damn far. Crazy stuff--cheese and crackers and sausage as an app with over the top cheddar from a regional farm, and the crackers were some homemade weirdness unlike anything served elsewhere in the city. Hard to describe her touch. Kohlrabi with queso blanco and chives and god knows what else. A salad loaded with bizarre "Mexican Gherkins" which I later found at the greenmarket. That happened a lot with her cooking--I'd have something new and different at Q Hideaway, and then actually find the vegetable in question at the greenmarket within the next couple weeks. I only went to Queens Hideaway 12-15 times over the last 3 years or so, and at least 2-3 of those meals were nothing special. It was a hard place to recommend, accordingly--she makes unusual food, the service would decline as the night wore on, it wasn't cheap, and once in a while it wasn't that good. But when it shined, it was one of those most original restaurants in the city--I'm talking about the chow, forget about the grumpy waitress. The chow, at its best, buckled my knees, and buckled a lot of knees. Sorry it didn't do that for you, Morekasha. And I'm curious to see if Ms. Queen, as the stories have been saying, shows up at a kitchen again in the city. She's good enough to start the same place up elsewhere but I'd be curious to see her in another proprietor's kitchen as well. Either way it'll be really interesting, at a minimum, and sometimes knee-buckling, I'd bet.