Super Taste

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China town, and Eldridge Street in particular, is home to some of the cities best low key reasonable eateries. Super Taste can certainly count itself among them. As you walk down Eldridge, try not to blink or you might miss it. Like many of the shops its nondescript storefront is easy to pass. I suggest following the street numbers.

Known for its hand pulled noodle soups, I decided it might be good to check it out one icy night a couple of weekends ago. As promised by many reviewers, and a close friend, the soup I got didn’t disappoint. I got the duck, and found the broth to be really tasty. My companion got the beef, also good and without bones. It should be noted that the soup is more than enough food for most people. I was genuinely surprised at the amount of noodles they packed in. This makes for an exceptional value.

Beyond the soup, we also split the Oxtail with rice, which I wouldn’t recommend. If you feel you need something beyond the soup, maybe try the dumplings. I wish we had.

Photo by hungryan_ via instagram

Point Brazil

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Typically you can find me running the other direction from a buffet place, but Point Brazil is one of the rare buffet places thats actually good. The food is Authentic Brazilian fare (This was confirmed by a Brazilian friend who I took once) and is made fresh daily. Lots of vegetables, yams, plantains, salad, black beans, rice. They have chicken and fish as well in the buffet area, and dishes change each day with your main staples always available.

Once you’ve finished with the assortment of items here, head over to the carving station. You’ll be able to pick from 7 or 8 different roasting meats, all spinning on a spit. They have beef, pork, chicken wrapped in bacon, and some not so run of the mill items like chicken hearts.

When you finish, your food is weighed, and I have always found it to be really fair value. It should ring up to between eight and ten dollars. Beyond this there is plenty of seating, and even outdoor seating in the warm months. This is a really dope spot.

Tip, grab the green hot sauce from the buffet station and apply as needed .

Out Latin Food

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I go here for lunch from time to time. The lunch special is reasonable, coming in under eight bucks, and filling. I currently take a class twice a week after work, so I need a large lunch to sate my appetite. This works. I have yet to try the mexican offerings, but the latin lunch platter is pretty good. I suppose my taste buds are nostalgic for these flavors since leaving Washington Heights for Queens. Rice, beans, beef stew, hot sauce you can’t go wrong.

Sake Bar Hagi

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Off the busy streets near Times Square, down a narrow flight of stairs you’ll find Sake Bar Hagi. I’ve been going to this Izakaya for years now. Back when Ben first took me here, you could buy a bottle of Sake, have them write your name on it with a sharpie, and come back later to sip from that bottle once again. Really a great business model, but one that has been discontinued, for reasons legal I can almost be sure of.

This review isn’t to lament about the good old days, Sake Bar Hagi is still great, and the food still flatters. An Izakaya is a place for patrons to relax, have a few spirits, and unwind from work. All the while taking in small plates of food. It’s kind of like a pub, or maybe a tapas place, but of course its distinctly Japanese.

Sake(as the name implies) still very much flows, even if you can’t tag up a bottle for future consumption,the selection is good. Not in the mood for Sake, these types of establishments always have beer as well. Hagi has the typical, Sapporo, Kirin and some legacy foreign and domestic options. But of course we come here for the food, and there are a wide range of options. Yakatori is on offer, so chicken/beef/vegetable skewers. Similar to the skewers is the short rib, think LA galbi, think definitely worth it.

Sushi and shashimi abound, as well as other fish preparations. I got the mackerel last time, it was grilled, cooked perfect. You can also get dishes such as uni if your looking for something not typically on offer. I got the uni, okonomiyaki and I was all set.

Manhattan Japanese Bar

 

Chandni Restaurant

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It’s Thursday, I’m on my way downtown for a job interview, and decide I’ll head over the the Ace Hotel as my meeting is nearby. After a hair cut, shower, and getting ready I realize I’m hungry but don’t have time to eat lunch before I head out. Where to go… then it hits me, I recall a place I used to go years back, and its right across the street from the Ace.

Situated in the garment district along 29th sits Chandni. Up a flight of stairs, left through the doors and your ready to order Indian|Pakistani fare with efficiency. Prepared dishes of chicken curry, saag panneer, Samosas, Goat Pulao, and on and on from an extensive menu. At a loss for words? Don’t know what to order? In either case just point. The food here is simple, quick, and above both of these good.

I was happy to be back here, maybe it was a bit of nostalgia, but I found the atmosphere inviting. When I sat down I also realized, its patrons are a great cross section of New Yorkers from one walk or another. Its quite (enough for a young professional woman to be tapping away on her lab top), yet a good place to chat with your friends (I overheard some gentleman talking about a service dog that someone kept with them at all times, but only for emotional support).

Of course, I came for the grub, and I decided to get a bit of what I used to typically order. So I ordered the naan, a kabab, and a chicken role. I also opted to try something new, so I got the allo tikki, a ground potato patty with herbs/spices. Chandni has lots of vegetarian options, so its definitely a good choice if thats you. I would also stress that its extremely reasonable, and prices haven’t changed much since I was last here years back. In the book I keep on pluses, reasonable cost is big. As I sat and quietly ate my lunch, dipping each bit into the raita sauce that I requested extra of, I realized, my lunch time stars had aligned.

Chivito De Oro

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I’ve lived near this Uruguayan restaurant for about two years, and have been on several occasions. I have to say this place is what its all about. Traditional fair, at a reasonable price, and did I mention its scrumptious. If you’re wondering what Uruguayan food might be like, it might be apt to compare it to directly to Argentine food. If you aren’t familiar with either, simply put, its grilled meat, and who doesn’t like that. Skirt stake, chorizo sausage, short rib, blood sausage, and the list goes on.

They have many combo platter that you can share so don’t be concerned that you’ll miss out. Also each combo comes with your choice of sides. I’ve had a bunch of them and they’ve all been good. Last time and I had sauteed spinach, just to mix it up a bit, but you might want to go with the plantains or fried yuca.

I like to start with the potato croquet, the rice one is good, but the potato is the dopeness. I would suggest not going on Sunday evening, which I’ve done twice, its most likely the busiest day. If you near by, eat here.

Duzan

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I’ve been going to Duzan for a while now, back before they closed down and remodeled. I’ve been going since then and I keep heading back. Now this is partly due to its proximity to my apartment, in the interest of full disclosure. I mean, there is only one restaurant closer, a halal pizza place, and I’m all for fusion concept food, but I digress.

Duzan is always crazy busy and with good reason. They have great food, reasonably priced, and excellent platter choices. They make shawarma, beef and chicken, and marinated kebabs. What I think really sets them apart though is the fact that they make fresh pita bread on premises, and for this reason I usually opt for the a sandwich in lieu of a platter. I get mine with everything, hummus, pickles, radicchio… the pickled radish ads a nice accent. For some reason the the beef is only available durring dinner service, so if you go for lunch, be warned you’ll have to get a kebab to order, or get the chicken. For sides they have two types of fries to choose from, hand cut or frozen, which is pretty cool, being able to choose for quality. I usually go with the felafel though. Three for a dollar, so for two buck you can get six. Make sure to ask for tahini and the house hot sauce and your “redta” go.

Queens Comfort

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Tried to go here several times over the past couple of years but it was always at max capacity, so we ended up going elsewhere. After revisiting QC here on Yelp I decided it was time to go. The pictures looked so good, and a picture is often worth a thousand words after all.

We went around eight and had the good fortune to be seated right away. Most of the time you’ll have to wait due to this venues popularity, as was the case for the people who came in after us. The vibe is chill, casual, and unpretentious.

After looking at all the great photos, I had a pretty good idea of what I was going to order. The menu is pretty comprehensive, and most of the time that worries me, but here I think it works. There are definitely some unique items, and this place would surely be a place they would visit on dinner driveins and dives (Update, since I wrote this they have been here). I was expecting Guy Fiori to pop up any minute, thank the good lord he never materialized.

We ordered the fried mac and cheese balls with siracha and ranch to start. Pretty good, but I would go another route next time. For the main course we split the Pig Mac and the chicken and waffles. expect large portions, and expect to leave full. The Pic mac is a pork cutlet with pickles chipotle mayo. Really I wanted a similar sandwich, but with pork belly, I had seen some people post photos of, but it was missing from the menu. Add a little Texas Pete and your good to go. Finally, my fav was the Chicken and waffles, tabasco glazed fried boneless chicken, over a Belgian waffle. Tasty, and I liked the fact the chicken was boneless.

Overall a good experience, and will go back because the brunch menu looks awesome. It would be really great if this place was open 24 hours.

Los Portales

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Los Portales is a great Mexican place on Broadway near the train in Astoria. The cemitas and tortas are so good, and if its your first time ordering from here I have to recommend getting the suadero cemita. They marinate the meat for a long time, so its nice and tender. The suadero with avocado, rehydrated peppers and Mexican cheese between a seeded bun makes for a satisfactory sandwich. This is my favorite, but all the sandwiches are delicious.

Taco’s are good to order here as well. They have your typical choices of beef and chicken, but also have some other interesting options as well. You can order Lengua, tongue for non Spanish speakers such as my self, and pig ear are some interesting selections. I like the pig ear taco, and would recommend this to anyone feeling adventurous. Fried plantains are always enjoyable, and they cut them thick. The only thing I’m not a huge fan of would be the burrito, its good, but I think you’ll find the other menu items more to your liking. Beyond this, Los Portales is open well into the night, so its a perfect place to order from after 12.

Sweet Afton

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I’ve been going to Sweet Afton for some time now, and have been meaning to pen a review. Believe the hype, the food is that good, and when I say food I’m really talking about the burger. I’ve searched far and wide for a burger that can compete with the one they server here and nearly all have fallen short.

What makes the burger so great mostly has to do with the locally sourced ingredients. Everything they serve, in fact, is locally sourced. Because of this quality is high. I like to add Irish cheddar to mine but add american, gruyere or nothing at all and its just as savory. On the weekend before four you have the option to add an egg as well.

I would suggest going for brunch on the weekend because they offer really good deals. They have cocktails on special and I believe pints are only four bucks. It’s also not as crowded as the evening which is nice. If your not in the mood for a burger they offer breakfast options of course. No waffles or hotcakes though.

Here is a list of items from the menu that I really like, and would suggest getting:

The Burger, really a must have.
Mac and Cheese, I’ve recently had some sub par mac and cheese, theirs won’t disappoint.
The Chicken Sandwich.
Fried Pickles, can’t just get these anywhere.

Most people like to get the fries, I mean what goes better with a burger. They’re good, not my favorite menu item, but they give you bunch so you can share. Ask for mustard with with them, they have the best mustard here. Its whole seed, its delicious.

Have any of these items and a pint and you’ll leave beaming.