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Moving: Temple Snacks & Little Pepper

scoopG Mar 2, 2009 05:12 AM

Stopped by both yesterday and a woman at Temple Snacks said they will be moving in a few days to the Flushing Mall. It was all hush-hush - not sure why. Also the folks at Little Pepper said they were in the process of renovating another space in Flushing in which they will move - no date given.

  1. k
    kerteman Apr 15, 2009 09:36 AM

    I went by Roosevelt Food Court yesterday looking forward to introducing some friend to Temple Snacks and others only to find the whole place closed, all grates down. Does anyone have the scoop?

    17 Replies
    1. re: kerteman
      l
      Lau Apr 15, 2009 09:57 AM

      unhide the earlier responses in this thread...they moved to flushing mall food court

      1. re: kerteman
        m
        MahatmaKanejeeves Apr 17, 2009 08:11 AM

        A few weeks ago, there were permits posted under the gate authorizing installation of kitchen equipment. The permit expires end of April.

        The front of Roosevelt Food Court is now unoccupied. The samsas and bubble tea stands across from Temple Snacks closed weeks ago. RFC may be closed due to insufficient business.

        1. re: MahatmaKanejeeves
          el jefe May 26, 2009 07:59 AM

          I went past the Roosevelt Food Court last night. It was open again with lots of socks for sale but at 7:00pm none of the food vendors were open. I have no idea if any of them ever will. I'm just posting the info here for the "regulars" who might want to check it out.

          1. re: el jefe
            Joe MacBu Aug 17, 2009 04:17 PM

            Any updates on the other former vendors of RFC?

            I'm particularly missing the Sichuan and Korean stalls.

            1. re: Joe MacBu
              DaveCook Aug 18, 2009 04:57 AM

              Han Song Ting, shown in the attached photo, has relocated (as of May) to Main Plaza, 34-02 Main St., toward the back.

              1. re: DaveCook
                Joe MacBu Aug 18, 2009 08:11 AM

                That's great news. Thanks!

                I could use a good bowl of naengmyeon during the current swelter.
                While I have yet to try theirs, I've met Korean patrons from LA who have proclaimed it to be the best they've had in the US.

                According to Dave's blog, I think the actual address is:
                37-02 Main St (Main Plaza).
                646-236-0081

                1. re: Joe MacBu
                  bigjeff Aug 18, 2009 11:50 AM

                  anyone had the naengmyun from the "Fountain Dumplings" in Flushing Mall? Second floor, the korean ladies with the 18-ct dumplings per serving, served with kimchi and gochu-based dipping soy sauce?

                  1. re: bigjeff
                    l
                    Lau Aug 18, 2009 12:04 PM

                    i tried to get it once and they didn't have it...also they didn't seem to speak korean as my gf tried to speak to them and they looked at her blankly

                    1. re: Lau
                      b
                      burton Aug 19, 2009 08:26 AM

                      The less than charming woman who appears to be in charge speaks Korean and Mandarin both. I believe she's from the ethnic Korean community in NE China. The others are Mandarin speaking in my experience (and in some cases are quite friendly). In any event, the dumplings are wonderful especially when made on the spot and easily justify a bit of transactional gruffness.

              2. re: Joe MacBu
                DaveCook Aug 18, 2009 05:09 AM

                Here's that photo.

                 
                1. re: DaveCook
                  l
                  Lau Aug 18, 2009 06:22 AM

                  these places on the border of korea are very interesting to me

                  what in particular is good at han song ting?

                  1. re: Lau
                    DaveCook Aug 18, 2009 07:54 AM

                    The bing's the thing: Pork and cabbage (perhaps scallion, perhaps yellow chive; accounts vary).

                    1. re: DaveCook
                      Joe MacBu Aug 21, 2009 02:27 PM

                      The bing is not available at the new location. They don't seem to have a griddle to cook them anyway. I did spot a big noodle extruding machine, however. They've also added dumplings to the menu.

                      The noodles are the thing here. I had a bowl of naengmyun that was big enough to feed two. I've had the #5 before, which has a spicy broth and some ground meat and is rather delicious. The most popular item seemed to be a soup with noodles and rice cakes, kelp/seaweed, cabbage, etc.

                      They also serve bibimbap, soon dubu and a couple of other soupy things (one looked like seolleongtang, but I'm not sure).

                      Too bad about the bing.

                      1. re: Joe MacBu
                        l
                        Lau Aug 21, 2009 02:56 PM

                        is their naengmyun any good?

                        1. re: Lau
                          Joe MacBu Aug 21, 2009 03:44 PM

                          I enjoyed it, but I haven't had enough experience with naengmyun to know how it compares to the rest. It was better than the other 2 or 3 bowls I've had around here. The noodles were definitely good, but they were not the translucent buckwheat type that I was expecting. For that reason, I'm not sure that they actually call it naengmyun.

                          Looks like I need to brush up on naengmyun. Where are the other good ones?

                          1. re: Joe MacBu
                            bigjeff Aug 21, 2009 09:23 PM

                            if not translucent, was it the darker colored one, i think is made of arrowroot or something, as opposed to the typical greyish-translucent one?

                            naeng myun is good but I've had mostly misses for some reason at most places in ktown (shilla, kang suh, chungmooro, etc.). personally I always get the hwe-naengmyun (preserved skate in the red spicy sweet sauce, served over "dry" noodles with the pear, slices of beef, etc.).

                            1. re: bigjeff
                              Joe MacBu Aug 27, 2009 04:45 PM

                              The noodles at Han Song Ting are made of wheat. So it is not naeng myun (i.e. buckwheat). The soup definitely is in the style of "mool naeng myun" since the broth is cold and has essentially the same flavor. Perhaps a more apt name would be "mool gook soo", but I lack an understanding of the finer points of Korean noodles to put money on that. Joe DiStefano has an article on the dish with photos, but he gets the (Korean) name wrong: http://newyork.seriouseats.com/2009/08/off-the-beaten-path-naeng-myun-at-han-song-ti-noodles-flushing-queens-nyc.html

                              You may be interested in the bowl of bibim naeng myun I had today at Chung Moo Rollrice & Dongas: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/648051

        2. c
          cervisiam Apr 13, 2009 09:55 AM

          regarding xiao la jiao/little pepper, they gave us a card with the address and map of new location, which they said in they would move 'in a few months':
          18-24 college point blvd, ny 11356

          this new location is 2 miles away from flushing in college point, and is accessible by two buses. i fear this move will frustrate and deter new and continued patrons from going, and their business will suffer. maybe someone else who knows the college point demographics could attest to how well little pepper would do in their new location.

          9 Replies
          1. re: cervisiam
            l
            Lau Apr 13, 2009 11:21 AM

            that is problematic b/c i dont think there is a train that goes close to there

            1. re: Lau
              el jefe Apr 14, 2009 01:02 PM

              Maybe this will increase their business? I'm sure there are plenty of people who eat there, or would like to, but don't travel by train or bus. Parking is impossible at their current location and will only get worse. I, for one, will go even more often to their new location.

              1. re: el jefe
                l
                Lau Apr 14, 2009 01:25 PM

                i dont know, i'd have to see the new area, but the foot traffic is great in downtown flushing even though they aren't right in the middle, but pretty darn close

                no parking (b/c its crowded) + close to public transport + crowded = foot traffic = good for business

                even though you have people like us who travel to go there, i would think that they majority of their business is the local flushing chinese population

                1. re: Lau
                  el jefe Apr 15, 2009 07:27 AM

                  I've never seen them get much walk-by traffic. Mostly it seems to be big groups at the round tables and Chowhounds at the 4-tops.

                  Except for the Citifield crowd and the Bland Houses, anyone who is walking to Little Pepper has to walk past every other restaurant in Flushing to get there. Maybe if they were somewhere near Main St, they'd get more foot traffic. Right now, every other restaurant in Flushing is also their competition.

                  At their current location they have 7 tables. (I don't count their upstairs space which is one of the most unappealing places I've ever eaten in in this country.) Hopefully, their new location will have more space and they'll need it.

                  1. re: el jefe
                    l
                    Lau Apr 15, 2009 07:34 AM

                    we'll just have to see

                    although they are well known in the flushing chinese community (i know from some friend's parents who are flushing locals...thats how i first found the place)

                    1. re: Lau
                      el jefe Apr 26, 2009 07:15 AM

                      I was in Little Pepper last night and asked about their new location. They said that work is supposed to take 3 months but that they've had problems with the architect, etc and that very little has been done so far. So the move is still many months away. That should be good news for those who need public transportation to get there.

                      btw, last night, 13 of the 14 groups that were in there between 7:15 and 9:00pm had at least one Caucasian at the table. Based on that, I think that a "nicer" space and easy parking will make them more of a "destination" than access to public transportation does.

                      The food was excellent, as usual. Too bad they never have the rabbit any more.

                    2. re: el jefe
                      2slices Apr 15, 2009 09:40 AM

                      The current Little Pepper setup does not scream out "Come check me out!". I went right past the first (and only, but not last) time I went there.

                      1. re: 2slices
                        d
                        diprey May 19, 2009 06:58 PM

                        You are right: the setup is far from glorious and the capacity, insufficient. Yet, I am attracted to the smell of their food as a moth to the light. IMHO, Xiao La Jiao is the #1 Sichuan place on the Eastern US seabord (I am not a food critic though). Wherever they go I'd follow, and the Q bus makes it a little easier.

                  2. re: el jefe
                    prunefeet May 19, 2009 06:42 PM

                    I don't see how it can increase their business as it's an area very hard to reach by public transportation! I'm horrified.

              2. Miss Needle Mar 23, 2009 11:33 AM

                We were at Flushing Mall on Saturday and saw Temple Snacks already there. They're located all the way at the end, next to the crepe stand. (btw, has anybody ever tried the Nutella and cheese crepe?!?!?!) He said it was his first day. We wanted to order a gua bo and intestine dish but he said he didn't have those today. So we just got the fried pork chop with rice. Not really my thing. I don't know if it was a poor rendition or that we just don't like the dish. The pork chop was super greasy and the gravy was pretty bland. I tasted a bunch of black pepper, but that was about it.

                14 Replies
                1. re: Miss Needle
                  l
                  Lau Mar 23, 2009 01:01 PM

                  shouldnt be like that a good version isn't like that...my friend who knows what taiwanese food tastes like told me something similar about their pai gu fan (pork chop rice)

                  try lai food's their version is decent

                  1. re: Lau
                    Miss Needle Mar 23, 2009 01:41 PM

                    If you're talking about the one on the corner of Prince Street, I believe they're closed. What's your recommendation for the best Taiwanese restaurant in Queens?

                    1. re: Lau
                      d
                      demigodh Mar 27, 2009 09:11 AM

                      Not in Flushing but Excellent Pork Chop House in Manhattan China Town (on Doyers St) has a great Taiwanese style Pork Chop over Rice. It has recently become one of my favorite dishes in the city.

                      1. re: demigodh
                        l
                        Lau Mar 27, 2009 09:28 AM

                        its just so so, its not nearly as good as the real thing and lai food's version is much better

                        1. re: demigodh
                          bigjeff Mar 30, 2009 01:35 PM

                          I concur with Lau; it had no crust! different creature . . .

                          1. re: bigjeff
                            l
                            Lau Mar 30, 2009 01:42 PM

                            yeah thats a good point as well

                            1. re: Lau
                              scoopG Mar 30, 2009 05:42 PM

                              None that I've found to date have the real Taiwanese style, flattened pork chop - which is quickly deep fried.

                      2. re: Miss Needle
                        k
                        kathryn Mar 25, 2009 01:43 PM

                        Thanks for the intelligence! Hmm, that crepe stand always kind of scared me a little since it looks like they pre-make some stuff and leave it sitting out. And turnover has never seemed high... that end of the mall is a little barren, too, I hope Temple Snacks does OK.

                        1. re: kathryn
                          Miss Needle Mar 25, 2009 02:32 PM

                          Yeah, I am a bit worried about its out of the way location. It looked like he was doing a lot of huge take-out orders but no eat-in orders except for me. I do hope they start carrying the gua bo pretty soon!

                          1. re: Miss Needle
                            scoopG Mar 25, 2009 05:00 PM

                            Even when they were at the RFC it could be spotty as to the Gua Bao availability. Not available 10-20 minutes after they opened or a 10-15 minute wait for one at noon...and yes that last stall area at the Flushing Mall does have a "last house on the left" feel about it....

                            1. re: scoopG
                              Miss Needle Mar 25, 2009 05:09 PM

                              Wow. I must have been fortunate the two times I've been to Roosevelt Mall. The first one was absolutely outstanding. Second time -- a little less so as the steamed bun was kind of stale, but still very good. All made in a reasonable amount of time. Hopefully I'll luck out next time.

                              1. re: Miss Needle
                                c
                                chin XPat Mar 27, 2009 04:46 AM

                                Opened
                                Temple Snacks at Flushing Mal, in their 1st floor food court by the bandstand.
                                We ate at other corner stall, where they sold Lai mein, n cut noodles.
                                saw Temple Snacks walking back to car, after eating.

                              2. re: scoopG
                                c
                                chin XPat Mar 27, 2009 04:42 AM

                                Opened
                                Temple Snacks at Flushing Mal, in their 1st floor food court by the bandstand.
                                We ate at other corner stall, where they sold Lai mein, n cut noodles.
                                saw Temple Snacks walking back to car, after eating.

                          2. re: Miss Needle
                            p
                            PaMa Apr 3, 2009 05:59 PM

                            I posted how bad Temple's fried prok chop was a while ago. I love their pork belly but the pork chop was just starchy, bland and greasy. Happy Noodle makes an excellent pork chop with rice (came across tit by accident). Closest to May Wah (now closed) from Chinatown. It even has the sour pickle vegetable and marinated egg they had at May Wah. Caoncur with Lau, Lai food also makes a very good one.

                          3. k
                            kathryn Mar 6, 2009 05:51 AM

                            Thanks for the update!

                            Was planning on going to Temple Snacks on Sunday with some friends, one of whom would have been devastated if he couldn't get a gua bao.

                            6 Replies
                            1. re: kathryn
                              l
                              Lau Mar 7, 2009 01:46 PM

                              is the whole place moving? i walked by it today and the whole thing was shutdown

                              1. re: Lau
                                k
                                kathryn Mar 7, 2009 01:48 PM

                                I called 646-463-3378, a woman picked up, I asked "what is your address?" and she said "Who is this?" I said that I probably had a wrong number, and hung up... Maybe I mis-dialed? Or they misprinted the number?

                                1. re: kathryn
                                  l
                                  Lau Mar 7, 2009 01:49 PM

                                  ehh not a good sign...sounds like the end of the Roosevelt Food Mall maybe occurring

                                  1. re: Lau
                                    chefjellynow Mar 7, 2009 04:18 PM

                                    uggh

                                    1. re: chefjellynow
                                      Joey Deckle Mar 7, 2009 07:08 PM

                                      Stopped by this evening. The gate was partially up, but every stall was closed. Saw the tall grey-haired gent from the Taiwanese stall at the back. He couldn't tell me why RFC was closed but said it should up and running in about a week.

                                  2. re: kathryn
                                    scoopG Mar 8, 2009 07:27 AM

                                    I just spoke to a woman who answered the phone (646-463-3578) and she said Temple Snacks is in the process of moving to the Flushing Mall. Her voice was very soft and I could hardly hear her - she thought they'd re-open in within 2 weeks. Not sure why the rest of RFC would be closed...

                              2. Miss Needle Mar 2, 2009 12:34 PM

                                Oh, that is interesting about the hush-hush.

                                FYI -- you can find the Xian food from Golden Mall at A&N(?) supermarket on Main Street as well. The owner was cooking and setting up there over the weekend.

                                4 Replies
                                1. re: Miss Needle
                                  bigjeff Mar 2, 2009 01:27 PM

                                  where/what is A&N? Is that the old Kam Sen next to the post office? Or I'm thinking of another place? Flushing residents have it so good, it's almost price wars between all of the asian megamarts in downtown flushing and nearby, must be at least a dozen choices now.

                                  1. re: bigjeff
                                    Miss Needle Mar 2, 2009 01:36 PM

                                    Yes, I believe that it is. Across from A&N is another supermarket that recently open. Yeah, it's super cheap in Flushing. DH and I spent $45 for groceries for the two of us (including 2 Bo Bo chickens -- one for roasting and one for making stock) and I got $2 worth of potatoes from the Union Square Greenmarket. With our pantry supplies, we definitely have more than enough food to last us throughout the week.

                                    1. re: Miss Needle
                                      Miss Needle Apr 20, 2009 12:51 PM

                                      Just a note: I was there over the weekend, and they are no longer there at A&N. Guess it didn't work out for them. I did stop by at Golden Mall and pick up a lamb burger. Well, as soon as DH plunked down $2.50, the woman just handed him a pre-made lamb burger. We've had it numerous times before and always enjoyed it. But this one was pretty bad. It was barely lukewarm and there really wasn't sufficient seasoning. It wasn't salty nor spicy enough. If this happens to us next time, I would probably ask for them to make a fresh one. May not be well-seasoned, but at least it would be warm.

                                  2. re: Miss Needle
                                    scoopG Mar 2, 2009 04:29 PM

                                    Yeah - my guess is they didn't want the other vendors to know. Temple seems to do a brisk takeout business and they are furthest from the tables in the rear. Also some of the other vendors more visibly display their food and some have photos. Temple did say to phone 646-463-3378 for a moving update.

                                  3. m
                                    MahatmaKanejeeves Mar 2, 2009 05:43 AM

                                    This is disappointing news. The 2 stalls across from Temple Snacks have also closed, although work was being done there last week. I hope that the rest of Roosevelt Food Court remains open.

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