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Good Bread on Staten Island?

Thanks for the update. I'm on North Shore, too, and have been in there a few times. They fit a lot into such a small space! I'll check out the bread next time...

Now, if we could only get a supermarket around the corner on Richmond Terrace, instead of a ferris wheel.

Jan 13, 2014
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Truly authentic Sichuan food in Manhattan/the Boros/N.J.

Grand Sichuan House in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn and/or Chengdu 1 in Cedar Grove, NJ. Both far better than anything I've had in Manhattan.

Nov 03, 2013
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Authentic Nigerian food on Staten Island

Wazobia Restaurant opened a few months ago across from Tappen Park in Stapleton, a mile south of the ferry terminal along Bay Street. Their sign said 'African and American' food, so I wasn't sure what to expect. However, the menu and food are completely unapologetic Nigerian cuisine. They were tickled to have diners straying in from outside SI's small African community, and were eager to make suggestions. My wife and I had fried beans cakes in spicy tomato sauce, stewed goat with jollof rice, and fried beef in locust bean sauce. Everything was rich, spicy, and delicious. Meat dishes were served with more parts than we are used to--a large slab of fried skin/fat with the goat, chunks of fried tripe and organ with the beef. All delicious, and surprising. More adventurous options are available as well--goat head, land snails, honey bean cake/boiled egg/flaked fish. We didn't have anything with fufu, but will give it a try our next time there. Limited options for vegetarians, but you could probably put a meal together, and I'm sure the proprietors would be eager to help.

Pleasant hole-in-the-wall ambience, though not particularly cheap (most mains $10-$15)

Regardless, well worth a visit.

Wazobia Restaurant
611 Bay Street
Staten Island, NY 10304
718-682-1781

Nov 01, 2013
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

ING NYC Marathon Dinner on Staten Island?

Second the Trattoria Romana suggestion. Best pasta dish far and away is fettucine paglia and fieno (house made fettucine w/ sausage/mushrooms/peas/prosciutto). I always insist on ordering something new, my wife always gets the fettucine, and I always end up eating half of hers. Pizza and such for the kids, too. Not cheap.

Nov 01, 2013
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Good Chinese food in Staten Island...anywhere?!

Pho Mac (Vietnamese) on Richmond Ave is at least from the correct continent. If you find passable Chinese, please let us know!

Oct 05, 2012
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Where are the Staten Islanders?

Trattoria Romana is on Hylan and serves memorable Italian fare. It doesn't look like much from the outside, but inside is all old world Italian-American classiness and really good (albeit incredibly heavy) grub.

Oct 05, 2012
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Indian Clove in Staten Island relocated, food remains stellar

My wife and I were dismayed when North Shore stalwart indian Clove apparently closed a few months ago, after several weeks of mysterious disarray. However, during a drive last week we realized they had actually just moved, about a mile down Clove Road into a shopping center on the other side of the expressway. We went last night and the food remains excellent, though they're still getting organized in their new digs.

Indian Clove is glorious North Indian, recognized by the Voice in 2011 as "Best Indian" in the city, but plagued by chronic under-appreciation and too many empty tables. Clove tries a little too hard to look modern, and prices are higher than I'd like them to be. Despite these misgivings, the food is often spectacular, and they are worth a trip out of the way. Standouts are all the chicken Chettinad and bhuna chicken, appetizers samosa channa chat and poori bhaji, and the malai kofta.

Go there. They're really good.

Indian Clove
2071 Clove Road
New York, NY 10304
(718) 442-5100

Sep 18, 2012
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Staten Island Pizza

My wife and I have been bringing friends on pizza crawls in SI for the 2 years since we moved here, and been winnowing our list down through trial and error. Pizzeria Giove has solidly replaced Salvatore's as our favorite, and is the equal of everything I've had in New York except for Difara's. The specialty pies are worth the extra money, and the white pies are really exceptional.

For the record, our current crawl of choice consists of Denino's to Lee's to Pizzeria Giove, in order of ascending greatness.

Pier 76, near the ferry, is also actually really good, especially their vodka pie.

Sep 18, 2012
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Where are the Staten Islanders?

Hey Comestible,

I am a recent Brooklyn-to-New Brighton immigrant. When I first moved to SI I relied heavily on your and Flaco's posts for eating guidance. So thank you! I've posted a couple times since then, and have tried to respond to posted queries. But my posts received little reply, and SI-related volume has been so low that I've had trouble remembering to check in on Chowhound for SI topics. I feel your frustration.

However, we do have wonderful and under-appreciated food here, and this remains the best place to talk about and research it. I will endeavor to check in more regularly over the next months. Perhaps others can do the same...

Sep 17, 2012
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Requesting feedback for cheap eats list for San Diego visit

Thank you SD CHers for all the great feedback. I am updating my list accordingly (unfortunately, except for the TJ posts--I just realized my passport is expired, which I didn't think of because the rules were different last time I visited). I will write a trip report early July-ish. Thanks again for all your generous recommendations.

Jun 03, 2012
jpiglet in San Diego

Need recs for one day visit to LA of unique cheap ethnic eats

Hello,

My wife and I are in LA for just a Saturday, and she's never been. We would like to visit 2-3 restaurants/food trucks/markets w/ food stalls that highlight L.A.'s unique cultural diversity. We're from New York, so we're especially excited about things that are different from what we can get here. We're culinarily adventurous but don't eat seafood, sadly. Last time in town I went to Flame (and Saffron and Rose), Jitlada, and La Casita Mexicana, and enjoyed all three, although all felt very 'safe' (not off the beaten path). We have a car, so stops can be a little spread out.

Your recommendations would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance.

Joe

Jun 03, 2012
jpiglet in Los Angeles Area

Requesting feedback for cheap eats list for San Diego visit

Hello SD hounds,

My wife and I are eager eaters of cheap, unpretentious, and often 'ethnic' food. We're in San Diego for two weeks from New York, with a car, staying central but driving all around. Following is a list of restaurants that sound up our alley cobbled together from from the last month or so of posts. Can locals suggest edits or additions to this list? I've included a few brewpubs and local foods places at the end because we like beer and it sounds like there is a strong local foods tradition.

Please advise, and thanks in advance. We are going for cheap, delicious, and utterly lacking in fancy ambience.

Also, is a visit to TJ worth it, food-wise?

THANK YOU!

Joe

Mexican:
Super Concina
Las Brasas
Super Sergio's
Tacos el Gordo
El Paisa
Aqui es Texcoco
Rudy's Taco Shop
Cantina Mayahuel
La Fachada

Vietnamese:
Pho Cow Cali
Mien Trung
Luong Hai Ky (VN-style Chinese)
Minh Ky (VN-style Chinese)

Japanese:
Yakyudori
Santouka

Local:
Tender Greens
The Linkery

Breweries:
Stone
Karl Strauss
Blind Lady Alehouse

Other:
Azucar
Sab e Lee
Dae Jang Keum
Alforon
Surati Farsan Mart
Northgate Gonzalez (Mexican supermarket w/ hot food)

May 28, 2012
jpiglet in San Diego

Amazing new ice cream and gelato parlor on Staten Island

I've only been in Staten Island for four months, and it is full of pleasantly jarring surprises. For instance, nestled in a strip mall across from Lowe's on Forest Avenue is a new creamery called Maze's. The ice cream is all homemade, and features well-realized flavors such as red velvet cake, cookie monster, and and carrot cake. The ice cream is supplemented by water ices with lots of whole fruit, and a full selection of homemade gelato (ricotta and fig, strawberry with balsamic, etc). More curiously, there is a full line of vegan ice creams with coconut, soy, and hemp bases. The totally fantastic ice cream is supported by environmentally conscious packaging--recycled napkins, compostable spoons, etc. It's open until 11pm most nights, and the prices are reasonable. All this in a strip mall. Screw you, Manhattan.

2236 Forest Ave
Staten Island, NY 10303

Sep 10, 2010
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Spicy Mina? Am i missing something

I've had the complete opposite experience of most of the complainants on here--I read the reviews of Mina's inconsistency and went expecting such, and have thus far been rewarded with (and surprised by) three totally spectacular meals. Really, just amazing awe-inspiringly great food, the memory of which makes my tummy warm and salivary glands active. Perhaps the low expectations made for a better experience?

Strangely, my one visit to Southern Spice, for which my expectations were very high, was a total disappointment. Go figure.

Jan 05, 2010
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Best Indonesian Food (including outer buroughs)

The Queens Indonesian restaurants are okay, especially Minangasli. I still drive (pathetically) back to Philly to go to Hardena, which swims culinary circles around its NYC counterparts. Its chef is formerly of the Chowhound-endorsed NY Indonesian consulate cafeteria, and her cooking is out of this world. If you're ever in South Philly, go to 15th and Moore. Steam tables, crappy plastic covers on the tables, BYOB, and totally amazing food. In the meantime, do go to Queens--the food is not spectacular, but it's still a great cuisine.

Dec 07, 2009
jpiglet in Manhattan

Huitlacoche - where to eat it??

All the main taco places on Myrtle Avenue in Bushwick have good huitlacoche quesadillas. I recommend comparing and contrasting Cholula Deli (Myrtle between Irving and Knickerbocker), the taqueria at Irving and Myrtle, and the taco truck on Wyckoff at the Myrtle Wyckoff L/M stop. They're all similar but use slightly different preparations. And yes, it's all canned, but I still love it.

Dec 07, 2009
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Glendale Is Hungry

Hello,

I've had a similarly barren Glendale experience, moving here a year ago from Sunset Park. After a year of intensive exploration, I have very little to recommend that's not over the border into Bushwick or Forest Hills. Given that (and beyond Bosnian Burger, which you already mentioned), here's what I recommend:

If you're traveling as far as Wafa's (which is fine but not spectacular), go a block further down Metropolitan to Katsuno, an incredible, authentic, unique, and totally unappreciated mid-priced Japanese restaurant, followed by dessert at Eddy's Sweet Shop, particularly anything with caramel or butterscotch on it (they're real!). La Tavernetta, as mentioned, is pretty good.

On the Bushwick side of things the original taco truck at the Myrtle Wyckoff stop is incredible, and almost always open. The original truck is the one on Wyckoff, not the '100% Mexicano' place which is okay and maybe a buck cheaper. A block or two south on Myrtle is Cholula Deli, which is a gem of a Mexican place.

The Salvadoran place on Myrtle at Irving has decent pupusas.

Rosa's Pizza on upper Fresh Pond is actually pretty solid for a neighborhood pizza place.

And that's it. I realize I've listed three places in Bushwick, one in Forest Hills, and one in Ridgewood, which totally validates your complaint. But I hope it's still some help. And really, give Katsuno a try--they're great.

Hmm. Our neighborhood really does suck for food. Alas.

Dec 01, 2009
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Sripraphai Expands!

I had my first disappointing meal at Sri (Elmhurst) two weeks ago. Soup broth was separated, oyster mushrooms heavy on stalky stems, chive dumplings were charred but still strangely undercooked inside, etc. These are all dishes I've had there a dozen times with no variance in quality. I hope the expansion doesn't mean the quality in Queens does a nosedive...

Nov 19, 2009
jpiglet in New York State (exc. NYC)

Birthday Weekend in Philadelphia - Need Recs, Please

It would be better for a birthday lunch than dinner, but Indonesian hole-n-the-wall Hardena is one of the greatest restaurants I've ever been to, period. And I live in Queens near all of its spectacular Asian offerings. My wife and I literally drive to Philly just to go there. It is an extremely minimalist steam table set up, but the chef is the former cook at the Indonesian consulate, and the food is freaking amazing. They shut down around 8pm, but if you have a daytime meal to spare order the satay, and a plate with jackfruit, tempeh or collards, and a protein of your choice. Go there! Really. And happy birthday.

Nov 09, 2009
jpiglet in Pennsylvania

Best mole in the city

I highly recommend the out of the way and underappreciated Sunset Park gem Santaguito ((6220 5th Ave, off the 59th Street N and R stop). They are a no frills family-run spot on the far fringes of the 5th Avenue strip with the best mole enchiladas I've had outside of street stalls in Mexico City. Sweet but not too sweet, thick and rich and unforgettable. The mole enchiladas aren't on the menu, but most days they'll be glad to make them. The rest of the menu isn't bad either.

Nov 09, 2009
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

GREAT Japanese in Forest Hills

Katsuno is SO freaking good. The last few times I've been there its been scary empty, and I'm really afraid they're not gonna make it in their current location. Please go there! I would miss their food tremendously.

Katsuno is in a non-descript Metropolitan Avenue storefront, and is a small and intimate mid-price Japanese restaurant run by a very friendly husband and wife team. The wife is your attentive server and the husband is the chef. The cooking is masterful and creative. Miso in different forms turns up all over the menu--as a dipping sauce for cucumber or tofu, a marinade for beef, or in its several traditional soup forms. My wife and I are vegetarian, but we're told the fish is superb, and the one time they accidentally served us eel it was so delicately flavored we thought it was suspiciously delicious warm avocado. Yes, vegetarian delusion. We particularly enjoy the hijiki and string bean salad, the omakase (chef's daily selection), the udon, and a frequent daily special of fresh tofu with dark miso sauce. Everything we've had has been fantastic. The cold onsen poached egg is a little strange but worth a try for texture alone. Excellent sake selection, etc. The chef is truly an artist, and takes a lot of pride in what he does.

Katsuno also makes an excellent date location, being two blocks from Eddie's Sweet Shop and their amazing ice cream and the nearby Forest Hills Cinema. Go there! Preserve one of Forest Hills' few culinary treasures.

718-575-4033. They have a website, too: www.katsunorestaurant.com

-----
Eddie's Sweet Shop
105-29 Metropolitan Ave, Queens, NY 11375

Katsuno
103-01 Metropolitan Ave, Queens, NY 11375

Nov 08, 2009
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Seeking taqueria with fixins' bar in Bushwick

My favorite Mexican is actually the cart next to the Myrtle Wyckoff L/M stop--open late and everything is delicious, excellent salsa verde, etc. The taqueria on the east side of Myrtle at Irving is serviceable, especially the huitlacoche quesadillas, and Cholula Deli as I mentioned is excellent and has a larger menu and weekend specials. Everything else I've had on the strip is okay but not spectacular. Cypress and Fresh Pond have okay Caribbean (i.e. Dominican and Puerto Rican) and Polish up in Ridgewood but again nothing really memorable. The Bushwick Mexican, though, really is some of the best and cheapest I've had in the city--everything is up to the standard of Sunset Park and about 20% cheaper.

Jun 01, 2009
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

I love Tacos Matamoros. Where else should I try in SP?

Ditto the Speedy's recommendation, especially the enfrijoladas (cheese or chicken rolled in tortillas, drowned in a frijoles puree, and topped with lettuce, crema, and avocado), and I would add the criminally neglected Santaguito's, on 5th Avenue towards Bay Ridge around 63rd--cheap, spectacular, and friendly. Their mole enchiladas are of special note, but everything is great.

May 28, 2009
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Seeking taqueria with fixins' bar in Bushwick

I have explored Bushwick Mexican pretty extensively and the closest I've found is Cactus (on Flushing a block south of Broadway), which doesn't have a fixings bar but does provide a nice three salsa tray for dressing, and Cholula Deli on Myrtle just north of Knickerbocker, which again has no bar but will bring you pretty much whatever you ask for in terms of condiments and veggies. It's a grocery store but has sit down area in the back.

May 28, 2009
jpiglet in Outer Boroughs

Pupusas in NYC?

Bahia is great. Also of note are Ine's Bakery at 4th Ave and 36th St in Brooklyn (open 24 hours to boot), and the Salvadoran restaurant across from the park on Knickerbocker in Bushwick. Pupusas are popping up everywhere as the Salvadoran population gets more established in New York--I found a deli off Myrtle Ave the other day serving them along with the cold cuts.

Nov 07, 2008
jpiglet in Manhattan

TOP MEXICAN IN NYC

Being from the West Coast, I always thought there was no good Mexican in NYC. However, over the past ten years the New York Mexican population has grown tremendously. I now live in Sunset Park, and the food is great. The best of our meals have been at Santaguito (6220 5th Ave--mole enchiladas, tinga flautas, huitlacoche quesadillas)) and at a restaurant whose awning says 'Speedy's Place' but whose menu says something totally different (4th Ave between 59th and 60th--enfrijoladas, tamales). Both places are very minimal, low-key, and not very fluent in English, though you can manage with a little pointing and some good humor if your Spanish isn't up to speed. Tulcingo's and El Jarocho on 5th Ave near 56th are also both very decent. Well worth a trip from outside Sunset. The food is mostly Oaxacan, though there are some folks from Puebla as well. Don't order burritos--most places don't really know what they are, and you'll eat much better ordering traditional Mexican dishes.

May 14, 2008
jpiglet in Manhattan