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Sunset on Rockaway Beach, Queens in New York City
A sunset at Rockaway Beach.
Photo by Karla Ann Cote/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Everything to Eat in the Rockaways This Summer

Arepas, ceviche, tacos, and more beachside food and drink

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A sunset at Rockaway Beach.
| Photo by Karla Ann Cote/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Summer is around the corner, and New Yorkers are ready to stretch their legs and leave their cramped apartments for sunnier shores. For many, the Rockaways is as close as it gets to to a beach vacation. Luckily, there’s no need to book a plane ticket or embark on a road trip when the subway, ferry, or even a bike ride brings visitors to the seashore. While a certain taco shop has been a draw for many beach-goers, the Queens shoreline has so much more to offer. On this map of Rockaway food favorites, find everything from Venezuelan street fare to Uzbek dumplings and West African bowls — all delicious reasons to plan a day trip or weekend getaway.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it also poses a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. The Bungalow Bar

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377 Beach 92nd St
Queens, NY
(718) 945-2100
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Come for a seat on the waterfront deck with panoramic views, stay for comforting dishes like a fried cod sandwich on brioche, mussels with marinara, and fried calamari. The year-round hangout frequently hosts live music, and serves brunch on the weekends.

A blue and white sign reads Bungalow bar.
The entrance to Bungalow Bar.
Bungalow Bar

2. Rockaway Beach Surf Club (aka Tacoway Beach)

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302 Beach 87th St
Queens, NY

One of the city’s best taco shops is located at Rockaway Beach Surf Club: a hybrid bar, surf shack, and restaurant. The move at Tacoway Beach is definitely the fried fish taco — there’s two to an order — that come topped with purple cabbage slaw, lime, and aioli (if that’s not saucy, add the salsa verde). Several vegetarian tacos, like a tofu version, are also available, while sides include elote or chips and guac. Wash it all down with a fresh pineapple mint juice.

Two fried fish tacos topped with purple cabbage and a lime sit in a paper tray with a side container of green salsa.
The fish tacos at Tacoway Beach.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

3. Rockaway Beach Bakery

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87-10 Rockaway Beach Blvd
Far Rockaway, NY 11693
(347) 727-7680
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Pastry chef Tracy Obolsky (an alum of Esca, North End Grill, Cookshop) has her own year-round bakery, where the sticky buns reign supreme. It’s the right stop before hitting the beach or for mid-morning snacks like scones, croissants, guava-cheese danishes, cookies, and quiche.

A pastry with cheese and guava jam on parchment paper.
The guava-cheese danish.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

4. Sayra's Wine Bar

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91-11 Rockaway Beach Blvd
Queens, NY
(347) 619-8009

Sayra’s is a lovely place for some drinks and snacks, whether sitting inside this Rockaway wine bar or out on the patio. The small plates menu includes items like spicy meatballs crostini, a cheese plate, and warm pretzels with mustard. Not to mention, there’s an extensive wine list, with bottles that usually don’t go above $40.

5. Uma's

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9207 Rockaway Beach Blvd
Queens, NY

The warm hospitality and quirkiness at this Uzbek restaurant is backed up by a menu of lagman, borscht, beef goulash, and two types of dumplings (manti and pelmeni). As a sit-down experience, Uma’s doesn’t boast sprawling patios, like some other establishments on this list, but it does make it an ideal respite from the rain or during a heatwave; it’s also worth the visit during the off-season for the Rockaways. That said, when ordered to-go, compact and portable pelmeni make for a fun beach food alternative — or a snack to eat on the hood of your car, as pictured here, on the way home from a long, sandy day.

A metal round takeout container features pelmeni dumplings garnished with dill.
Could pelmeni be summer 2022’s best beach food?
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

6. TheCradleNYC

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194 Beach 96th St
Queens, NY 11693
(929) 350-8289
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What started out as a beachside food cart selling West African food blossomed into a brick-and-mortar restaurant during the pandemic. The Cradle sells West African bowls like efo riro with stewed chicken and pounded yam, alongside a menu of smoothies with ingredients like dragon fruit — with plenty of bang for your buck. Owners Babajide Alao and Pesy Sikyala also run a nearby farm in collaboration with Edgemere Farm, where they source ingredients for their cooking.

A black takeout container holds a spinach-based stew, pictured next to a pink smoothie, and a clear plastic container holding a ball of pounded white yam.
Efo riro with pounded yam and a strawberry-dragonfruit smoothie.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

7. Whit's End

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97-02 Rockaway Beach Blvd
Rockaway Beach, NY 11693
(718) 945-4100
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For a slightly pricier Rockaways date-night option, this BYOB Italian restaurant announces unusual daily menu specials on its Instagram, so there’s something new to try each visit. Dishes here run the gamut from shrimp scampi with kumquats and ramp pesto to baked clams with seaweed butter — all spins on more classic fare. Whit’s End is especially known for its wood-fired pizzas.

A burger oozing with orange and red cheese sits on a white oval plate with a side salad garnished with pink radishes, thinly sliced.
The menu is often changing at Whit’s End.
Whit’s End

8. Rippers

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8601 Shore Front Pkwy
Queens, NY
(718) 634-3034
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Further east on the boardwalk at 86th Street, Rippers is serving always-great burgers including one called the Hard Body, a double patty with double cheese. Other Americana beach snacks on the menu include hot dogs, a fish sandwich, and soft serve. This burger favorite is set to reopen for the season on Friday, May 20.

9. Connolly's

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155 Beach 95th St
Queens, NY
(718) 318-1714
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When it was reported that Connolly’s was sold to new owners, panic ensued amongst longtime fans of the Irish pub, which had been open since 1962. Everyone seemingly had one question in mind: What would happen to the bar’s legendary frozen drinks? Fear not, though: According to Grub Street, Mike Reinhardt and Mike Kololyan, owners of a local surf school, got the original recipe for the bar’s beloved frozen pina colada, garnished with a maraschino cherry, as part of the package deal in taking over the iconic Queens spot. Connolly’s is officially relaunching Memorial Day weekend.

A red awning on a wood-laden building front says the Connolly’s name and also boasts an extending American flag.
Connolly’s will retain its beloved frozen drinks.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

10. La Cevicheria

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97-01 Shore Front Pkwy
Rockaway Beach, NY 11693

Cool down with marinated raw seafood at La Cevicheria, a stand that’s one of several beachside concessions at 97th Street, now run by new operators. The ceviches here make for tart and portable, refreshing beach bites that don’t weigh you down when you’re spending the day surfing or splish-splashing around in the water. La Cevicheria and other 97th Street concessions are reopening Memorial Day weekend.

11. The Rooftop and Margie’s at the Rockaway Hotel + Spa

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108-10 Rockaway Beach Dr
Queens, NY 11694
(718) 474-1216
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Whether you’re spending a weekend getaway staying overnight at this new hotel and spa or just stopping by for the day, the property boasts a rooftop bar, restaurant, and coffee shop — just a bit further away from the bustling boardwalk traffic. Margie’s, the hotel’s restaurant, has lunch, brunch, and dinner service that includes a raw bar, New England claw chowder, and salads. Meanwhile, the rooftop bar features panoramic views with a side of tacos. On the ground-level, Greenhouse sells pastries and coffee.

An empty dining room with tables, chairs, a blue banquette, and walled filled with artwork.
Margie’s is a newcomer to the Rockaways dining scene.
The Rockaway Hotel

12. Caracas Arepa Bar

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Shore Front Pkwy
Queens, NY
(718) 474-1709

New Yorkers familiar with Caracas will find solace at this Rockaway location, which thankfully has remained despite fears surrounding its potential closure after new owners took over the concession stands in the Rockaways last year. The waterfront stand offers arepas, maduros, and more. It’s slated to reopen on Friday, May 20.

An open face sandwich in a Venezuelan bread called arepa sits on a wooden platform next to a steel cup with some yellow sauce in it called Salsa Caracas
Arepas are the move here.
Caracas Arepa Bar

13. Pickles & Pies Food Market & Deli

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202 Beach 116th St
Rockaway Park, NY
(718) 634-6041

When a sandwich is needed after a day drinking underneath the Rockaway sun, this super simple deli is the answer. Pickles & Pies is open 24 hours, too, should you be staying past dusk for a beach party.

1. The Bungalow Bar

377 Beach 92nd St, Queens, NY
A blue and white sign reads Bungalow bar.
The entrance to Bungalow Bar.
Bungalow Bar

Come for a seat on the waterfront deck with panoramic views, stay for comforting dishes like a fried cod sandwich on brioche, mussels with marinara, and fried calamari. The year-round hangout frequently hosts live music, and serves brunch on the weekends.

377 Beach 92nd St
Queens, NY

2. Rockaway Beach Surf Club (aka Tacoway Beach)

302 Beach 87th St, Queens, NY
Two fried fish tacos topped with purple cabbage and a lime sit in a paper tray with a side container of green salsa.
The fish tacos at Tacoway Beach.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

One of the city’s best taco shops is located at Rockaway Beach Surf Club: a hybrid bar, surf shack, and restaurant. The move at Tacoway Beach is definitely the fried fish taco — there’s two to an order — that come topped with purple cabbage slaw, lime, and aioli (if that’s not saucy, add the salsa verde). Several vegetarian tacos, like a tofu version, are also available, while sides include elote or chips and guac. Wash it all down with a fresh pineapple mint juice.

302 Beach 87th St
Queens, NY

3. Rockaway Beach Bakery

87-10 Rockaway Beach Blvd, Far Rockaway, NY 11693
A pastry with cheese and guava jam on parchment paper.
The guava-cheese danish.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

Pastry chef Tracy Obolsky (an alum of Esca, North End Grill, Cookshop) has her own year-round bakery, where the sticky buns reign supreme. It’s the right stop before hitting the beach or for mid-morning snacks like scones, croissants, guava-cheese danishes, cookies, and quiche.

87-10 Rockaway Beach Blvd
Far Rockaway, NY 11693

4. Sayra's Wine Bar

91-11 Rockaway Beach Blvd, Queens, NY

Sayra’s is a lovely place for some drinks and snacks, whether sitting inside this Rockaway wine bar or out on the patio. The small plates menu includes items like spicy meatballs crostini, a cheese plate, and warm pretzels with mustard. Not to mention, there’s an extensive wine list, with bottles that usually don’t go above $40.

91-11 Rockaway Beach Blvd
Queens, NY

5. Uma's

9207 Rockaway Beach Blvd, Queens, NY
A metal round takeout container features pelmeni dumplings garnished with dill.
Could pelmeni be summer 2022’s best beach food?
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

The warm hospitality and quirkiness at this Uzbek restaurant is backed up by a menu of lagman, borscht, beef goulash, and two types of dumplings (manti and pelmeni). As a sit-down experience, Uma’s doesn’t boast sprawling patios, like some other establishments on this list, but it does make it an ideal respite from the rain or during a heatwave; it’s also worth the visit during the off-season for the Rockaways. That said, when ordered to-go, compact and portable pelmeni make for a fun beach food alternative — or a snack to eat on the hood of your car, as pictured here, on the way home from a long, sandy day.

9207 Rockaway Beach Blvd
Queens, NY

6. TheCradleNYC

194 Beach 96th St, Queens, NY 11693
A black takeout container holds a spinach-based stew, pictured next to a pink smoothie, and a clear plastic container holding a ball of pounded white yam.
Efo riro with pounded yam and a strawberry-dragonfruit smoothie.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

What started out as a beachside food cart selling West African food blossomed into a brick-and-mortar restaurant during the pandemic. The Cradle sells West African bowls like efo riro with stewed chicken and pounded yam, alongside a menu of smoothies with ingredients like dragon fruit — with plenty of bang for your buck. Owners Babajide Alao and Pesy Sikyala also run a nearby farm in collaboration with Edgemere Farm, where they source ingredients for their cooking.

194 Beach 96th St
Queens, NY 11693

7. Whit's End

97-02 Rockaway Beach Blvd, Rockaway Beach, NY 11693
A burger oozing with orange and red cheese sits on a white oval plate with a side salad garnished with pink radishes, thinly sliced.
The menu is often changing at Whit’s End.
Whit’s End

For a slightly pricier Rockaways date-night option, this BYOB Italian restaurant announces unusual daily menu specials on its Instagram, so there’s something new to try each visit. Dishes here run the gamut from shrimp scampi with kumquats and ramp pesto to baked clams with seaweed butter — all spins on more classic fare. Whit’s End is especially known for its wood-fired pizzas.

97-02 Rockaway Beach Blvd
Rockaway Beach, NY 11693

8. Rippers

8601 Shore Front Pkwy, Queens, NY

Further east on the boardwalk at 86th Street, Rippers is serving always-great burgers including one called the Hard Body, a double patty with double cheese. Other Americana beach snacks on the menu include hot dogs, a fish sandwich, and soft serve. This burger favorite is set to reopen for the season on Friday, May 20.

8601 Shore Front Pkwy
Queens, NY

9. Connolly's

155 Beach 95th St, Queens, NY
A red awning on a wood-laden building front says the Connolly’s name and also boasts an extending American flag.
Connolly’s will retain its beloved frozen drinks.
Emma Orlow/Eater NY

When it was reported that Connolly’s was sold to new owners, panic ensued amongst longtime fans of the Irish pub, which had been open since 1962. Everyone seemingly had one question in mind: What would happen to the bar’s legendary frozen drinks? Fear not, though: According to Grub Street, Mike Reinhardt and Mike Kololyan, owners of a local surf school, got the original recipe for the bar’s beloved frozen pina colada, garnished with a maraschino cherry, as part of the package deal in taking over the iconic Queens spot. Connolly’s is officially relaunching Memorial Day weekend.

155 Beach 95th St
Queens, NY

10. La Cevicheria

97-01 Shore Front Pkwy, Rockaway Beach, NY 11693

Cool down with marinated raw seafood at La Cevicheria, a stand that’s one of several beachside concessions at 97th Street, now run by new operators. The ceviches here make for tart and portable, refreshing beach bites that don’t weigh you down when you’re spending the day surfing or splish-splashing around in the water. La Cevicheria and other 97th Street concessions are reopening Memorial Day weekend.

97-01 Shore Front Pkwy
Rockaway Beach, NY 11693

11. The Rooftop and Margie’s at the Rockaway Hotel + Spa

108-10 Rockaway Beach Dr, Queens, NY 11694
An empty dining room with tables, chairs, a blue banquette, and walled filled with artwork.
Margie’s is a newcomer to the Rockaways dining scene.
The Rockaway Hotel

Whether you’re spending a weekend getaway staying overnight at this new hotel and spa or just stopping by for the day, the property boasts a rooftop bar, restaurant, and coffee shop — just a bit further away from the bustling boardwalk traffic. Margie’s, the hotel’s restaurant, has lunch, brunch, and dinner service that includes a raw bar, New England claw chowder, and salads. Meanwhile, the rooftop bar features panoramic views with a side of tacos. On the ground-level, Greenhouse sells pastries and coffee.

108-10 Rockaway Beach Dr
Queens, NY 11694

12. Caracas Arepa Bar

Shore Front Pkwy, Queens, NY
An open face sandwich in a Venezuelan bread called arepa sits on a wooden platform next to a steel cup with some yellow sauce in it called Salsa Caracas
Arepas are the move here.
Caracas Arepa Bar

New Yorkers familiar with Caracas will find solace at this Rockaway location, which thankfully has remained despite fears surrounding its potential closure after new owners took over the concession stands in the Rockaways last year. The waterfront stand offers arepas, maduros, and more. It’s slated to reopen on Friday, May 20.

Shore Front Pkwy
Queens, NY

13. Pickles & Pies Food Market & Deli

202 Beach 116th St, Rockaway Park, NY

When a sandwich is needed after a day drinking underneath the Rockaway sun, this super simple deli is the answer. Pickles & Pies is open 24 hours, too, should you be staying past dusk for a beach party.

202 Beach 116th St
Rockaway Park, NY

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