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Jun 8, 2010 05:54 AM

Visiting: Need Recommendations for Queens (Jackson Heights) and Brooklyn

I am a chef in the Midwest and visiting a friend in NYC next weekend and I'll have a day to myself; any recommendations on things to do/see on a Friday that are food inspired?

I am looking for food recommendations in and around Brooklyn for inexpensive brunch/lunch and maybe wine/after work drinks. Being from the Southeast Asian origin, I am also hoping to catch a train to Queens for ethnic food and to window shop.

Key areas of interest: Fresh, homemade, pasta places, Authentic mexican/cuban/latin american food, dim sum/asian, good (err great) biryani and finally sushi is hard to come by here so fresh seafood and sushi options (at inexpensive) eateries will be greatly appreciated. I LOVE STREET Carts so please recommend away for those too!

From reading lots of posts, these are some places I've narrowed down my list to. But feel free to add to the list if I've missed something that's a must on your list.

Hop Shing
Boca Chica
Dosa Man
Arepas Lady
Kati Roll
Bhatti Grill

And finally what Farmer's Markets are open on Friday?

Everything must be accessible by train and/or walking.

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  1. be aware that the arepa lady is only out after 10 on fridays adn saturdays. check her myspace.
    if you like carts, you might like to take a walk down roosevelt. all the way to the ecaudoran carts by Junction ave I believe. these are not polished, new carts. they are pigs head simmering in their juices on top of a shopping cart (only 1 uses a shopping cart actually).

    1. When I see lunch, brooklyn, and fresh pasta in the same post, I immediately think of Al Di La, on 5th ave in park slope. Great homemade pasta and italian food, open for lunch. Not super cheap, but not super expensive for what it is.

      You can also check off the dim/sum-mexican eats on your list by visiting sunset park. Pacificana and a few other 8th ave sunset park places have good dim sum (I like pacificana b/c the setting is great--upstairs, high-ceilinged, ornate old room) and then down on 5th ave there's good mexican. Also, if you're interested in the city's best banh mi, that's also on 8th ave in sunset park--Ba Xuyen.
      There is better mexican and equally good if not better dim sum in queens, but they're in different neighborhoods so would require more travel.

      Since you're SE asian, if you're jonesing for a Thai food fix, I would def recommend Sripraphai or one of the other good queens thai restaurants. I spend a lot of time in Thailand as I have family there and these restaurants are the only places that come close to being like what you get there.

      Great biriyani is not easy to find. Right now I think the best Indian restaurant around is Southern Spice in Flushing, but not easy to get to by public transportation. I haven't had the dosa man's dosa, but i would suggest Saravannas Bhavan in curry hill for a diverse south indian veg menu.

      Another suggestion is the golden shopping mall in flushing--a collection of stalls with good chinese food--xian food, hand-pulled noodles, dumplings, sichuan food--feels like being in Asia. tons of posts about it on this board if you do a search.

      The farmer's market at union square is open fridays--go to greenmarkets website to check for others.

      Enjoy your day--wherever you end up going!

      813 55th St, Brooklyn, NY 11220

      Al Di La
      248 5th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215

      64-13 39th Ave, Queens, NY 11377

      Southern Spice
      1635 Hillside Ave, New Hyde Park, NY 11040

      3 Replies
      1. re: missmasala

        great- thanks Miss Masala. Can you point me towards some chowhounder posts about mexican in queens? I think I may consider going there if I end up at Union Square farmer's market after brunch.


        1. re: LiberalFoodie

          Sunset park has some options, but you can go to Taqueria Coatzingo in Jackson Heights for great mexican. There are other options down Roosevelt into Corona too. TC is the most well known, but for good reason.
          Also, I would not recommend it for lunch, but if you are around late night, I would check out El Paso in Woodside. The other mexican restaurants in that area are highly touted by other chowhounders but I've found myself loyal to El Paso mainly b/c I usually get there around midnight when the steam tables are just starting to get incredible.

          Taqueria Coatzingo
          76-05 Roosevelt Ave, Queens, NY 11372

          El Paso
          64-06 Roosevelt Ave, Queens, NY 11377

          Woodside Cafe
          60-06 Woodside Ave, Queens, NY 11377

          1. re: Jeffsayyes

            I also love Taqueria Coatzingo. I haven't been to many of the mexican carts on roosevelt, but i know the Tia Julia one is highly rec'd by Eric Eto. In fact, check out his posts on this board--he seems to have a passion for the mexican food in the JH area and is totally reliable.
            tia julia:


            there are other threads--just do a search

            Taqueria Coatzingo
            76-05 Roosevelt Ave, Queens, NY 11372

            Tia Julia
            91st St and Roosevelt Ave, Queens, NY 11372

      2. Two places in Williamsburg (Brooklyn) for sushi and an expanded Japanese horizon go to Zenkichi and for cutting edge creations (done in fairly small plates and reasonably priced go to Traif where the owner/young chef produces fabulous creations!

        77 North 6th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11211

        229 S 4th St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

        1. Near Franny's is:

          Street vendors:

          look up 'red hook ball fields'

          238 Flatbush Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11217