09/02/19 4:14pm

Taste the World During the U.S. Open

As the No. 1 food fan in Queens, I was very pleased to learn tennis fans have some Queens-based dining options at this year’s U.S. Open. My favorite Vietnamese sandwich shop, Elmhurst’s JoJu is slinging classic bánh mì as well a bánh mì inspired hot dog and Helen You of Dumpling Galaxy is serving up her signature lamb with green squash dumplings and other goodies. It’s nice to see China and Vietnam represented, but Queens offers food from all over the world so here’s a globetrotting list of 7 of our favorite places from an Argentine steakouse and the borough’s only Burmese to one-of-a-kind only in Queens street foods like Peruvian doughnuts and amazing Tijuana style tacos.

1. Tijuana style Birria tacos at Beefrr-landia
Dozens of taco trucks and carts line Roosevelt Avenue as the 7 train rumbles overhead transporting tennis fans to the Open, but there’s only serving Tijuana style tacos: Beefrr-landia. The truck’s signature beef birria taco is filled with a ruddy beef stew scented with cumin, cinnamon, paprika, bay leaves, cloves, and a good dose of chilies. For a real treat get a side of consomme—a heady scarlet soup featuring more beef—and dip your taco into it. Beefrr-landia, 77-99 Roosevelt Ave., Jackson Heights, 347-283-2162

2. Burmese at Asian Bowl
Despite its generic name and a menu that features such American Chinese standbys as General Tso’s chicken this spot run by Kyaw Lin “John” Htin and his wife, Aye Thida, has the distinction of being the only Burmese restaurant in the World’s Borough. Among the list of 13 thoke find the famous latphat thoke, or tea leaf salad, as well as the lesser known gin thoke. The latter is a tangle of shredded cabbage, ginger, and tomato shot through with briny dried shrimp and crunchy broad beans resulting an explosion of texture and flavor. It’s great paired with the crispy beef, which has been fried with onions and chilies until it shatters. Asian Bowl, 101-11 Queens Blvd., Forest Hills, 718-275-1888

3. Chinese Breakfast at Joe’s Steam Rice Roll
This breakfast specialist whose Chinese name translates to Stone Milled Rice Roll King, is located just one subway stop away from Arthur Ashe Stadium. It’s a well-deserved moniker, owner Joe Rong and his crew make the lightest rice rolls around thanks to the fact that the grind their rice in a stone mills to create fresh batter daily. Fillings include shrimp, pork, beef and an assortment of veggies. The crown jewel at the King Joe’s though is the shrimp and egg topped with curry fish balls, soy sauce and peanut sauce. It’s even better with the complex homemade chili oil. Best of all Joe’s is open all day not just for breakfast. Joe’s Steam Rice Roll, 136-21 Roosevelt Ave., #A1, Flushing

4. Peruvian Doughnuts at Antojitos Doña Fela
On Saturdays and Sundays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. the matriarch of this Peruvian food stand fries up picarones, Peruvian doughnuts made from a batter of squash and sweet potatoes. The airy treats are scented with anise and drizzled with a syrup that has just a hint of orange. A quintet of the freshly fried treats will set you back just $5. Savory items includes succulent anticuchos, grilled beef heart skewers ($10). Antojitos Doña Fela, NW corner of Roosevelt Avenue and 90th Street

Farine’s decadent rocky road baked Alaska.

5. Classic Desserts and fried chicken at Farine
As much as I love the Korean-inspired fried chicken sandwich at Chef Michael Mignano’s Farine, the desserts from such classic Viennoiserie as chocolate almond croissants and a killer kouign amann never cease to amaze. Treat yourself and your date to one of the newest additions, a decadent rocky road baked Alaska. Chocolate ice cream lurks beneath the browned meringue, the entire lot surrounded by chocolate shavings and toffee bits. Farine Baking Company, 74-24 37th Ave., Jackson Heights

6. Championship Nepali Dumplings at Nepali Bhancha Ghar
Before or after watching world class tennis players vie for top honors at the Open tuck into some championship momo—Tibetan dumplings—at this charming restaurant whose name means “Nepali eating house.” For the past two years the jhol momo, gingery chicken dumplings in a spicy garlicky soup have won first prize at the annual Momo Crawl. Nepali Bhancha Ghar, 74-06 37th Rd., Jackson Heights, (917) 999-0228

7. Carnivorous Argentine Delights at El Gauchito
Situated in Corona’s Esquina Argentina neighborhood, this temple to Argentine gastronomy—i.e. sumptuous grilled meats served with plenty of garlicky chimichurri—got its start as a butcher shop in 1978, which Mario Civelli named for the mascot of his home country’s football team in that year’s World Cup. You can’t go wrong with the parillada for two, which features skirt steak, short ribs, sweetbreads, and an amazing housemade blood sausages. El Gauchito, 94-60 Corona Ave., Corona, 718-271-1917

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *