Jun 15, 2015

Our Own Backyard: A Day in Queens

We spend so much time traveling we take for granted the fact that our own backyard stretches across five boroughs, providing countless food adventures at our fingertips! While Chinatown in Manhattan is nothing to ignore, Flushing, Queens is where you’ll find the real-deal Chinatown!

Queens is an easy trip on the 7 subway toward Queens, but a MUCH better idea is to take the LIRR and buy a "city ticket" — it's half the price of a regular ticket, and much more pleasant than the 7 train.

Bring friends, come hungry, and bring cash.


Golden Shopping Mall (41-28 Main Street)

This spot is hard to find. If you’re questioning your sense of direction because there’s no way we’d send you to such a sketchy looking spot, you’re definitely in the right place. On the corner of Main Street and 41st Rd, you’ll see a DVD shop. To the left of that shop is a flight of stairs heading down to the basement level food court housing some of the best Chinese food in North America.

One of you grab a table while the others hit up these four stalls, which we think are the cream of the crop!

Xi’an Famous Foods (41-28 Main Street) – While there will soon be 10 Xi’an Famous Foods locations around NYC, there’s something exciting about checking out the original spot. When you see where Jason Wang got his start, you will be even more appreciative of what he’s built from such humble beginnings! Wang may be from Xi’an, but he’s living the American dream! Order the Spicy Cumin Lamb Burger and the Cold Skin Noodles.

Tianjin Dumpling House (41-18 Main Street) – Honestly, these were the freshest dumplings we’ve ever eaten in our lives. In fact, on our last trip, the Chicken & Broccoli Dumplings inspired Sarah to completely overhaul the Chicken & Dumplings dish at Birds & Bubbles. You should limit yourself to two orders of dumplings max., (you have a lot more to eat today) so we recommend starting with the Chicken, and then choosing between the Lamb & Squash or the Pork & Chive.

Lanzhou Hand Pulled Noodles (133-35 Roosevelt Ave., Ste 22) – This is your moment to show some patience. You’re hopefully sitting at a table full of dumplings and treats from Xi’an’s Famous Foods, and even though they are delicious, the smell of the broth from the Pork Meat Sauce Pulled Noodles you just bought is making you drool.

Give it a minute kids, because that soup is so dang hot it will scorch your tongue. Enjoy a few more dumplings and let it cool before you dive in!

Tinkongg Pancake House - Upstairs on the street level you’ll find a no name Pancake stall. You’re going to want to try the Stuffed Bun with Lamb, which is sure to be the best spin on a Sloppy Joe you'll ever eat!

Sifu Chio (40-09 Prince Street)

Get the Wonton Noodle Soup, Dumpling Trio, and Lo Mein Hong Kong Style. You’re Welcome. (Cash Only)

White Bear (135-02 Roosevelt Avenue, Ste 5)

The entrance is actually on Prince, so don't let the address make you miss the amazing Wontons in Chili Oil! You’re going to want to order more. Don’t do it. You have a lot of dumplings to eat today!

Nan Xiang Dumpling House (38-12 Prince Street)

Our top picks are the Shanghai Shao Mau, Scallion Pancake with Beef, and the winner, Xiao Long Bao— soup dumplings.

Spicy & Tasty (39-07 Prince Street)

Here you'll find straight up Szechuan food. We loved the Sesame Cold Noodle, Creamy Tofu & Minced Pork, and the Dan Dan Noodles. (Cash Only)

Fu Run (40-90 Prince Street)

It's a treat to pop into a spot where you can sit for a spell AND have access to a clean bathroom! Order the Muslim Lamb Chop and the Sour Cabbage Casserole. As soon as your main dishes come out put in your order for the Ba Si as it takes a while to get to the table, but will definitely be the most interesting take on a donut you've ever seen.

Iris Tea & Bakery (3907 Prince Street, Ste 1 J)

Iris is by far the best pastry shop in the 'hood. Take advantage of the tables and chairs and enjoy some Trunk Bread and the Mange Red Bean Roll. If you really can’t eat anymore — we have not taught you properly — but, at the very least, take some treats home with you to keep your food crawl going well beyond when you leave Flushing!