gnocchi's Profile

Title Last Reply

6 hour layover at JFK - any nearby food recommendations

The area near the train station is referred to as Old Howard Beach. You are correct, mostly residential, maybe a few bars, chinese place.

You would have to walk two blocks north and then over to Cross Bay Blvd a few blocks for Howard Beach proper and the commercial strip, probably less than 3/4 mile. There is plenty of stuff on Cross Bay. I would prefer to do this walk on a nice day versus venturing onto the Van Wyck or Belt Pkwy; but that is me, I don't like to take chances with air travel connections.

Jul 20, 2013
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

Breakfast--Sayville,LI Area--Weekday

What is a good weekday breakfast place, diner or other, in Sayville, LI? Does not have to be in village, anyplace nearby, up to Sunrise Hwy or east toward Bayport/Bluepoint or Patchogue is OK, but not going west of Sayville.

Rehearsal dinner near Melville LI

Was La Strada where the owner/chef passed away last year? If so, is it still good? Operated by same family?

Rehearsal dinner near Melville LI

Second on Bussola on Jericho Tpk, Woodbury. Used it for RD Nov 2011, everyone enjoyed the food and service. It was a weeknight, however.

Eats After Leaving JFK at Rush Hour

I guess adventurous was a poor choice of word. The person I'll be driving with won't go for anything jerk, hot/spicy, etc.

Thanks for the Swingbelly's info.

Eats After Leaving JFK at Rush Hour

I actually wanted to go to Flushing or Whitestone but was afraid of what the traffic would be like that time of day. I don't mind a small amount of stop and go but don't want to end up sitting and crawling on the Van Wyck Expwy for an hour+. Any idea what the driving is like in that area at 4-4:30 pm?

Sep 26, 2012
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

Eats After Leaving JFK at Rush Hour

I have to drop someone at JFK airport tomorrow, Thursday at 4pm. Then two of us want to stop for something to eat before driving back to eastern LI. I think it would be best not to travel too far until the traffic subsides a little. Not looking for adventurous food like Caribbean near the airport.. Probably Italian, Greek or good seafood would be best. Maybe drive as far as Elmont, Valley Stream or Rockville Centre. Or we would be willing to drive down the Nassau Expwy towards Atlantic Beach, Long Beach or Five Towns area for something good. Thanks in advance.

I also posted this on NY board since the airport seems right on the cusp, wasn't sure where would be best.

Sep 26, 2012
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

Eats After Leaving JFK at Rush Hour

I have to drop someone at JFK airport tomorrow, Thursday at 4pm. Then two of us want to stop for something to eat before driving back to eastern LI. I think it would be best not to travel too far until the traffic subsides a little. Not looking for adventurous food like Caribbean near the airport.. Probably Italian, Greek or good seafood would be best. Maybe drive as far as Elmont, Valley Stream or Rockville Centre. Or we would be willing to drive down the Nassau Expwy towards Atlantic Beach, Long Beach or Five Towns area for something good. Thanks in advance.

Early Breakfast Enroute to 59th St Bridge

Hey, this is great info for next time, thanks.

I had to travel earlier in the morning than planned and didn't have time for breakfast on the way to the bridge after all. On the return from Manhattan I made a qucik stop at Bricktown Bagel in LIC for bagel and egg. They do make a nice bagel.

Sep 09, 2012
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

Desperate for Roma/Plum tomatoes for sauce-September 14th

This place on LI http://lennybrunofarms.com/Home_Page.... usually has plum tomatoes, also pick-your own if desired. September would normally be the time of the year for plum tomatoes in the Northeast but everything is early this year because of the warmer than normal spring and summer.

Like Cheese Boy says heavy is better, not just for value but because a heavier box or bushel generally indicates greater ripeness. A box of dead ripe tomatoes will always weigh more than the same volume of partially ripe. You really don't want any green shoulders showing on tomatoes used for sauce. That is one reason why if you have the time and inclination to pick your own and can find a farm that offers such, you can choose just the nice ripe ones.

Sep 09, 2012
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

Early Breakfast Enroute to 59th St Bridge

I asked this question back in 2008 and got some good info, ended up at New Post diner which was OK, not great.

I have to travel the route again, early Saturday July 14, around 8 am.

Any updates would be appreciated.

"I will be driving to Manhattan via Queensboro Bridge this Saturday morning around 8 am. I would like to stop in Queens for a good breakfast, Mexican style preferred. Can be anywhere in Woodside, Sunnyside, JH, Astoria, LIC areas, but closer to bridge is a plus. Relative ease of parking and a place that can accomodate a single diner would also be a positive. Need a place that is open at least by 8 am, 7am would even be better."

Thanks.

PS: Anyone know the breakfast hours of Taqueria Coatzingo?

Jul 11, 2012
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

Best SLICE in Brooklyn

Do you think Gino's is open Christmas Eve? I have to pick up some people at JFK 7pm and they want to eat, so around 7:30--8pm this SAT. Anythig else good at Gino besides pizza? Thanks

Dec 21, 2011
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

RESTAURANT.COM--VARYING PRICES?

Thanks for the info re bigcrumbs.com. But as you say, $25 cert normally $10, on special for 80% off. But when I checked yesterday while the 80% promotion was available, the $25 certs had different prices depending on the restaurant. Some were $10 while others were $12.50 or $15 before the 80% discount. A restaurant I visited 3 weeks ago had been $10 for a $25 cert at that time and I used a 70% discount, but yesterday the price had increased to $15 (or $3 after the 80% discount).

Is this a new policy for restaurtant.com, ie offer 80% off but raise the price so that the discount is really 70%??

Aug 17, 2010
gnocchi in General Topics

RESTAURANT.COM--VARYING PRICES?

Is restaurant.com now using variable prices for the certificates? I thought it was always like $10 for a $25, $20 for a $50 cert, etc. Now I see all kinds of prices for the $25 denomination, $10, $12.50, $15, etc. Also a lot of the $50 and $100 denominations are no longer available. It looks like their software is running this like the airlines, keep changing the price as the seats sell or when special discounts are offered.

Aug 16, 2010
gnocchi in General Topics

Big Apple Barbecue Block Party Fast Pass Now On Sale-- This Year they have added a $25 "service" charge

"In all the years of the event, no effort has been made to decrease the lines or handle the crowds with faster service. Plus let's be honest. It's not uncommon to find yourself standing in a line that's not moving, with piles of meat sitting there waiting to be served."
Well, to be honest they have done a few things to smooth out the confusion. They have added additional vendors and expanded more onto Madison Ave. In the early years i remember the lines being really chaotic, people didn't even know what line they were on, all kinds of line cutting, etc.
Also early on, no cash was accepted, you had to purchase paper tickets, an additional hassle.
So the spreading out with more corrals and Fast Passes have helped, but now it seems to be evolving into something more elitist, with surcharges for passes, hospitality tents for those willing to pay, while the average poor schmuck waits on a long line. I can tell you for sure I remember paying $200 on AMEX and getting $225 of food. Now it's the other way around, in essence "what the NYC traffic will bear". I can bear it, but I don't need it that bad.

May 11, 2010
gnocchi in Manhattan

Bar on Manhattan Ave Greenpoint Bkln

i think you may be correct. I checked out the website and sure enough there's the chalkboard out on the sidewalk:

May 10, 2010
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

Bar on Manhattan Ave Greenpoint Bkln

I think I saw The Mark Bar on the other (west) side of the street. I'll check it out when I get back there to look for the place I saw on the east side. But that was the general neighborhood I'm talking about, and there appeared to be no shortage of drinking places.

May 10, 2010
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

Bar on Manhattan Ave Greenpoint Bkln

A few weeks ago on a Saturday I was walking the length of Manhattan Ave from north to south. Somewhere north of Norman Avenue I noticed a pub on the east side of the street that had a blackboard sign out on the sidewalk advertising the availability of Dogfish Head Aprihop along with some other items. I couldn't stop to check it out because I had to meet up with some people further down towards Williamsburgh.

Anyone know what the name of this place might have been or general location on the Avenue?

May 10, 2010
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

Big Apple Barbecue Block Party Fast Pass Now On Sale-- This Year they have added a $25 "service" charge

My memory might be failing me on this subject but I seem to remember the original pass (Bubba Fast Pass?), offered value GREATER than the purchase price. I recall paying $100 for $120 worth of food. Anyone else remember that?
Then the last few years it was even-up, and now this.

May 08, 2010
gnocchi in Manhattan

Pizza Along 25A, Eastern Queens/Nassau County?

Where is the best pizza to be found along or not far from 25A from the Queens-Nassau border to the Nassau-Suffolk line?

Mouse in the restaurant's dining room.... [moved from Manhattan board]

That's what I was thinking. What should he say and how should he say it? And what should the customer say? As a customer I wouldn't want to damage the owner's image in front of a room full of customers because of a single mouse sighting. And it's difficult for the manager to address you if within earshot of several others tables; all hell could break loose. I say better to let the manager know quietly when you're leaving and then see how he apologizes/explains.

Sep 18, 2009
gnocchi in Not About Food

Does anyone use "Rewards Network"?

I think some of the confusion is because there are several levels of cards out there. Some are "paid" like yours and the rate is 10% but they are charging you a $40 fee that is deducted from initial rewards. Others are completely free but they will max at $5%.
The current program which is about to expire had an additional provision whereby your earnings would jump by an additional 5% after spending a certain amount each calendar year. I think it was around $400. Once you spent $400 the establishments that were offering 10% would jump to 15%.

bagelman01 posts below that the 15% is legacy but I know for a fact that a few places in my area (NYC suburbs) are at that level. I would say the majority in my locale are at 10% with a very few at 5-8%.
Rewards Network/iDine/Transmedia etc keeps jerking around with their marketing scheme trying to get something to click, but it's probably a delicate balance between pleasing and signing up consumers vs. doing the same for restaurant owners. Remember when they tried offering rewards that varied by time of day that you dined?

But in the end if the program is free you can't complain too much. If the public is in fact dining out less they are going to use the best promotion available in their area. It seems that some restaurant owners are just better at how they handle these rewards programs and local promotions and the treatment they afford to diners who utilize them.

Sep 18, 2009
gnocchi in Not About Food

Does anyone use "Rewards Network"?

I tried posting this at the top in reply to bluebird, but anyway it ended up down here.

Sep 18, 2009
gnocchi in Not About Food

Is Organic a Hoax?

I believe there was an e. coli outbreak in fresh apple cider in New England several years ago. Animal manure had been spread on the orchard floor as a soil ammendment and contaminated drop apples.

The peanut problem was supposedly caused by birds and/or rodents in the warehouses. The packaged spinach situation from CA involved E. coli O157:H7, which is found in cattle intestinal tracts. I don't think they ever determined where it came from, but there were dairy farms in the area.

READ THIS: http://www.organicconsumers.org/artic...

or full article here:
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article...

The desire for increased food safety will have its own costs, environmental and otherwise, and most likely will impose new hardships on the smaller and/or organic grower.

Sep 16, 2009
gnocchi in Not About Food

Does anyone use "Rewards Network"?

What in hell is up with this lately? They've been sending emails advising of change back to iDine on SEP 27, 2009. And with the changeback the rewards will be only 5% and won't be credited until you dine an additional time within 60 days. I just looked and most rewards in my local area are currently 10% with a few 15%'s here and there. This looks like a big step backwards in consumer benefits.

Another thing I've noticed lately is an increasing shift in their participating merchants to pub and nightclub type establishments that serve some food versus straight restaurants. I think it's the beginning of the end, but who knows, they've been around a long time thru several reincarnations. Maybe the slugggish economy plus competition from outfits like restaurant.com forces them to make a change, but probably the basic problem is they are losing merchant clients.

Sep 15, 2009
gnocchi in Not About Food

Rockaways or Howard Beach

Here is another in Rockaway Park close to water .
The Wharf, Beach 116 st.
Click here: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/20...

Then click on link on that page for Rockaway Park,

As far as Howard Beach I would definitlely rate La Vila above Lenny's. La VIla is good.
Is there a Vincent's in HB? How is that compared to Lenny's?

Also does HB or S Ozone Park have a coffee/pastry shop serving cappucino, espresso and italian pastries in the evening other than the usual Starbucks?

Aug 05, 2009
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs

Lettuce has not sprouted

Don't you think the last week of August would be too late for Toronto, or have you had success with that timing? It might be OK if all you were looking to harvest were baby lettuce leaves. To obtain a more mature head I would suggest the first week of August. and you could probably harvest mid October.

Jun 18, 2009
gnocchi in Gardening

Lettuce has not sprouted

I would say they shoud have sprouted by now. Lettuce will germinate when days are above 40 deg F. Maybe you planted too deep? You want the seeds to be barely below the surface, maybe 1/8 inch. If you carefully scratch with a knife point or toothpick you should be able to find some seeds and see if they are sprouted.below the surface. If you moisten the soil for the first few days after sowing, that should be enough. If inorganic fertilizer was added to the soil you may have appled too much and burnt the seedlings. I assume this was raw seed, not the pelleted type.

You could test the seed by trying to germinate some between moist paper towels, but at this point it's probably best to replant with some new seeds from a reputable source. Or try planting two sections of the box separately, one with new seed and another area with your problem seed.

Jun 15, 2009
gnocchi in Gardening

LI Strawberry festivals?

I think Driscoll's and the other berry distributors have really stepped up the quality over the past 2-3 years. Between CA, FL, and Mexico there's almost a year-round supply of decent strawberries at reasonable prices. The FL berries available in the East can have a very good flavor, but I think that's more due to spending 1 or 2 days less in the truck than anything else. But FL is a lot like local berries, a very short season and then it's too hot down there. We really depend on coastal CA for an almost constant supply.

Brooklyn Pizza along Belt Parkway

Since you mention New Park in Queens, I would also recommend La Villa in that same Howard Beach area. I believe they have a place in Mill Basin close to the Parkway as well, but I haven't tried that location.

Feb 02, 2009
gnocchi in Outer Boroughs