La Flor Cafe in Woodside, Queens is one of my favorite places to go for brunch off the 7 train (see my original La Flor review). Below the bustling subway line is a quaint Mexican inspired cafe that seems to frequently reinvent itself. Flowers are painted on the window panes and tabletops are made from mosaics of broken dishes. The menu is simple, offering a handful of appetizers, tortas, salads and entrees. Brunch is served only until 2pm and you must inquire about the selection of beverages, as they are left off the menu. Just like everything else at La Flor, the Mexican pizza is a marriage of two cultures. A successful merger between the west and the south, the Mexican pizza recreates a New York staple. A traditional Italian crust is topped with Oaxacan cheese, cilantro, guacamole and tender cuts of pork. The pie is big enough to serve two, but once you take a bite you will think twice about sharing.
La Flor Cafe-53-02 Roosevelt Ave Woodside, NY 11377 (718) 426-8023
Manducatis Rustica (46-31,33,35 Vernon Blvd 718-937-1312) better be damn good, as they take up three addresses on the famed Vernon Blvd. There are three parts to this pizza/cafe shop- the kitchen with the giant brick oven, the coffee/dessert shop and the actual dining room. They offer brick oven pizza, though not by the slice, traditional Italian food, freshly baked breads, gourmet coffee and the best of all, sweets- pastries sprinkled in powder sugar and tasty gelato- from chocolate to banana to jasmine to blueberry. Not to be mistaken for the original Manducatis on Jackson Ave, this place offers a new kind of dining atmosphere to LIC. Its quaint rustic feel goes beyond the traditional exposed brick walls. Walking into the cafe you are transported to what resembles an old fashioned dessert parlor. There’s an antique cash register, old photos, even the curtains are reminiscent of decades gone by. The counter offers a window side bar to prop yourself on for some snacks. There are also tables in the back for more substantial fare. Manducatis Rustico is a unique addition to LIC.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( 1 so far )
#5 Sac’s Astoria 25-41 Broadway Specializes in coal oven–– great for the fresh toppings, crispy crust and coal oven taste. This Italian eatery also offers traditional appetizers and entrees. The ambiance is nice but casual- side walk tables in the summer are a plus!
#4 Trattoria L’incontro Astoria 21-46 31st St at Ditmars Specializes in brick oven–This decadent but slightly tacky restaurant is one of the best Italian splurges in the entire city! They serve traditional Italian entrees, extensive wine list, daily specials galore and brick oven pizza cooked to perfection. It’s more than a restaurant, it’s an experience. Service is extremely friendly and attentive- bring your wallet.
#3 Rose & Joe’s Bakery Astoria 22-40 31st Specializes in Sicilian slices–Grab a slice of authentic Sicilian pizza at Rose & Joe’s. Fluffy and buttery crust makes you go mmm. The service is friendly, but seating is not available…the pizza is delicious.
#2 Michelangelo’s Pizza Astoria 29-11 23rd Ave. 718-932-2096 & Whitestone Specializes in Thin Crust Pizza–Fresh toppings are spread onto a thin crust with edges that are browned just enough to give it a crispy crunch. Casual and clean atmosphere, delivery available.
Now for # 1…your choice! Where do you go for pizza?
Adam says his favorite is Famous Pizza in Elmhurst 8307 Broadway 718-271-3000 “The crust is like butta! They specialize in personal pan pizza- which is what I get when working in the ER at Elmhurst Hospital. Delivery could be faster, but it’s worth the wait.”
Dora says her favorite is Alba’s in Astoria 36-20 Ditmars blvd 718-932-5924 “Alba’s is a family-owned establishment with a delicious slice! The sauce has a sweet tang to it and the crust is perfectly soft with a satisfying crispiness on the bottom. Alba’s also offers a traditional Italian menu. A bonus is the soda fountain, something you don’t find all that often in NYC”
Diana says her favorite is Marabella Pizzeria 41-07 Greenpoint Ave, Sunnyside (718) 786-4635 … rumor is she’s got a crush on a pizza boy…Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( 3 so far )
Rose & Joe’s (22-40 31st St btwn 23ave & ditmars) is often overlooked and underestimated. They don’t specialize in sticky treats or icing glopped cakes. This tiny bakery is famous for fresh italian breads, cookies, pastries and their unforgettable Sicilian pizza. The bread is served crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. The tastey cookies, traditional italian pastries and delicious quick-breads are baked fresh, an ideal afternoon snack or mid morning treat to compliment your coffee. If you happen to see a long line outside the door- don’t get discouraged. Patrons are just itching to get a slice of the perfectly prepared Sicilian pizza- served hot or cold, with toppings or without- either way you slice it, it’s delicious. Service is some of the friendliest around. Take out is necessary- seating is not available- but well worth the walk!Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( 1 so far )
Michelangelo’s Famous Thin Pizza
29-11 23rd Ave. 718-932-2096
Michelangelo’s Famous Thin Crust Pizza is the answer to all those thin crust cravings. It’s as if the Gods of heaven swooped down and personally hand delivered this fine pie directly to the community of Queens. Fresh toppings are spread onto a thin crust with edges that are browned just enough to give it a crispy crunch. There is just the right amount of olive oil and herbs to complement the taste, but not over power it. They also serve traditional Italian entrees at around $10-$18. The service is good and the ambiance is nicer than most pizza shops- with table clothes and a clean atmosphere, but not quite as nice as a weekend dinner spot. It’s perfectly suitable for a casual sit-in or delivery.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( 2 so far )