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Moving: Temple Snacks & Little Pepper

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.

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  1. 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.

    1. 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

        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

          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

            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

          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. 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

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

            1. re: Lau

              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

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

                  1. re: chefjellynow

                    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.

                1. re: kathryn

                  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. 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

                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

                  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

                    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

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

                      1. re: demigodh

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

                        1. re: bigjeff

                          yeah thats a good point as well

                          1. re: Lau

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

                    2. re: Miss Needle

                      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

                        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

                          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

                            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

                              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

                              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

                          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. 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

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

                            1. re: Lau

                              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

                                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

                                  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

                                    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

                                      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

                                      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

                                        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

                                    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.