In the Philippines and at Papa's Kitchen, karaoke is not a gimmicky sideshow for diners to gawk at, but a deeply ingrained part of a culture that values the ability to carry a tune. It's put to good use at this tiny restaurant that also serves some commendable Filipino cooking.
For those who like their greens a little more battered and fried, and maybe topped with chicken and cuttlefish for good measure, Ayada's worth a visit.
This simple dish of roasted soybeans with chili and raw ginger should be a required snack at bars all over Woodside.
Must-visit Nepali restaurant Woodside Cafe used to offer Italian dishes next to its Himalayan ones, including some pizza best left in the past. But you can still order something pizza-like in shape and design, a starch-on-starch-on-starch pancake/pie with a fried egg on top for good measure. Oh, and some goat curry on the side.
Popping out of the 74th Street-Broadway station in Jackson Heights, chef Andy Ricker of Pok Pok was ready to take us on a Thai market tour around the neighborhood. We traipsed up and down the aisles of a few markets specializing in Thai products as he pointed out the ones he likes (frozen coconut milk) and those he really doesn't care for (canned curry pastes; "don't ever buy them, please.").
Woodside Cafe's Nepali and Newari food is unique even by Queens standards, and the menu is more than accommodating to vegetarians.
The Sunnyside Mexican favorite has opened a second location in Astoria. One of the tastier offerings is this pork sandwich, which is way more fresh and texturally interesting than most of the taqueria tortas out there.
Market Tours: Irish Ham, Boiling Bacon, and Black Pudding at The Butcher's Block in Sunnyside, Queens
On a quiet side street off Queens Boulevard in Sunnyside, Queens, there's a cartoony wooden cutout of a maniacally gleeful butcher (with unnaturally blue eyes), grasping a red cow. Then you notice the shamrocks painted on the window behind him. And the bold red letters hinting at other treats inside: boiling bacon, corned beef, black and white pudding, rashers. Welcome to The Butcher's Block, one of NYC's few Irish grocery stores.
Stork's Bakery is a vestige of a dispersed community. Queens was once home to a thriving German-American population dating back to the mid 19th century. But Stork's still stands, a tribute to the stubbornness of its owner, Anton Duke, who bought the business from the Stork family back in 1990.
There are two Crispy Chinese Watercress Salads on the menu at Sripraphai in Woodside. I'm not saying that A-6, the salad on the regular menu, piled high with shrimp, chicken and squid isn't a great choice; but VA-2, Crispy Chinese Watercress Salad on the special vegetarian menu ($9.50) is even better, and it's a dish that I order again and again.
The Sandwich de Enrollado ($6.50) contains a generous portion of inch-thick slabs of a rustic head cheese that's tender in some parts and chewy in others.
Halo halo! An icy dessert with all sorts of sweet tidbits, this time from the Philippines. Halo halo is typically shaved ice that is placed in a cup or bowl that has already been filled with various fresh or jellied fruits and beans, then topped with ice cream.
Ask around for the best, most authentic Thai food in New York, and depending on who you ask, you'll likely be pointed towards two locations in Queens: SriPraPhai in Woodside, and Chao Thai a few blocks away in Elmhurst. Both are admirable options, but which one is the best?
Storefronts on Queens Boulevard and Roosevelt Avenue from Sunnyside to Woodside, traditionally Irish neighborhoods, are fully decorated in green and orange this week for St. Patrick's Day. Of the many pubs, diners, and restaurants flaunting four leaf clovers, I chose three for a full day of foods from the Emerald Isle—breakfast at the Stop Inn Diner, lunch at The Butcher Block, and dinner at PJ Horgan's. Black and white puddings, sausage rolls and shepherd's pie were just a few items in this fun and filling feast. Check out my day of eating Irish in the slideshow!
Dinner invariably starts with an audible gasp, a muffled squeal, and nervous giggles. You may have seen it on television—perhaps the Korean film, Oldboy, or the Outer Boroughs episode of No Reservations, featuring Anthony Bourdain and David Chang. On the small screen it was a flamboyantly audacious novelty. But if you're at Sik Gaek, located only 20 minutes outside of Manhattan, you're likely here for a reason. Sannakji, or young octopus—dispatched within minutes of consumption, with a cephalopodan nervous system too spirited to calmly accept its demise—arrives at the table still thrashing about. The facial expressions around the table say it all.
Looking for something great to eat at the US Open this year? While you could partake in the concession stands, the stadium is right in the middle of one of the most culinarily exciting regions of New York. You can travel the world on your way to (or from) the stadium, just by following the 7 Train—a direct line to the stadium from Manhattan. From 40th Street to Flushing, there are great international eats at every stop, from full meals to snack stops. Here are some of our favorites.
Editor's note: In "Fast Food International," Krista Garcia will take us around New York to the many international fast food chains that have landed in the five boroughs. She blogs at goodiesfirst.com. Country of Origin: The Philippines Locations Worldwide: Around...
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