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Xi’an Famous Food’s LIC Location Closed Indefinitely After Fire

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Plus, two new brunches to try — and more intel

A fire truck is in front of a white building that says Xi’an Famous Foods, with flames coming out of the top.
The LIC Xi’an Famous Foods
FDNY Twitter

Long Island City Xi’an Famous Foods closed after fire

Chinese noodle chain Xi’an Famous Foods’s Long Island City location on Jackson Avenue erupted into flames on Thursday, a three-alarm fire that caused one non-life-threatening injury, according to the FDNY. Photos from the day showed that the roof suffered the bulk of the damage, its front edges partially destroyed. The fire department said it’s still investigating the cause, but Xi’an Famous Foods put out a statement saying that it didn’t originate in the restaurant’s kitchen.

A representative for Xi’an said they believe that the fire was caused by contractors who weren’t employed by Xi’an, but were working on the roof with flammable tools. The exact cause of the fire however is pending an FDNY report.The outpost is closed until further notice, but Xi’an is hopeful to have another LIC location soon.

The LIC branch is one of the newer locations for Xi’an Famous Foods, a local chain with more than a dozen locations. It opened last March and was the third location in Queens.

In other news

— New York State is considering doubling the tax on beer to help fund public colleges.

— In response to city council criticism about GrubHub collecting too many unnecessary fees from restaurants, the delivery platform is making some changes to its phone call system.

— Eater Young Gun DeVonn Francis’s avant-garde pop-up dinner studio Yardy will be at the Fly on Monday for a special dinner, celebrating Caribbean food, according to the Bed-Stuy restaurant. Options include roti and tomato choka ($9), rotisserie cabbage with fried shrimp ($14), and rum cake with labneh and candied citrus ($10). In addition to the Fly’s stunning wine collection, cocktails like a winterproof (rum, burnt pineapple, winter spices) will be available.

Burger King is offering residents of the Bronx free Whoppers on Sunday through UberEats as some kind of promotion related to the Joker stairs.

— The ’60s-style TWA Hotel started heating its rooftop infinity pool overlooking the JFK airport runway for a winter ski-theme.

— The thin, springy pierogis of Greenpoint newcomer Pierozek get highlighted in the Times’s Hungry City column this week, while the Court Street Grocer team’s HiHi Room employs an “unmistakable brand of irreverence” and plenty of worthy dishes, according to New Yorker’s Tables for Two.

— There are two new brunches to consider for the weekend: On the Lower East Side, the Market Line’s seafood restaurant Essex Pearl is now offering dishes like biscuits with crab gravy and Malaysian shrimp and grits. Over in the East Village, the Ruffian team’s slightly bigger new natural wine restaurant Kindred starts serving brunch Saturday, too. There’s chicken-fried sweetbreads with waffles and spicy honey butter, mac-and-cheese with cavatelli and several kinds of cheese, and an Italian brunch torte with puff pastry, baked eggs, and butternut squash.

— Weekend craving: