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Pastes Kiko's by Robert Siestema

The Queens Heatmap: Where to Eat Right Now

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121212_bk12_bk1212123123112008_10_hasmaps%20%281%29.jpegIt's time to update the Queens Heatmap, a guide to new restaurants and recently-reviewed establishments in the mighty borough of Queens. Here are the places that the critics, bloggers, and restaurant obsessives are buzzing about right now. This edition of the map also includes a few seasonal restaurants that just returned for the summer. Check it out:


Added 05/05/2013: MP Taverna, The Shady Lady, Lao Cheng Du.
Added 06/08/2013: Bunker, Mamak House, Forno Pizzeria & Trattoria.
Added 07/13/2013: Milkflower, the Rockaways concessions, Thai Rock, Grill 43.
Added 08/04/2013: Sayra's Wine Bar, Crescent Grill, Mar's.
Added 09/08/2013: Snowdonia, Tamashii Ramen, Woodbines, Pata Paplean.
Added: 10/06/2013: Dutch Kills Centraal, Mezze Place, Papa's Kitchen.
Added: 11/10/2013: Venturo Osteria, Crazy Crab 888, Houdini.
Added: 12/08/2013: M. Wells Steakhouse, Mu Ramen, The Food Box.
Added: 01/04/2013: El Bombon, New York Dog House, Blend on the Water
Added 02/09/2014: The Little Lamb, Arunee Thai, Marani, Pink Nori
Added 03/09/2014: Front Toward Enemy, Maizal Astoria, Dhaulagiri Kitchen
Added 03/09/2014: Hibino, EIM Khao Mun Kai, The Bao Shoppe.
Added 05/04/2014: Mapo Korean BBQ, Fatty's, Dish
Added 06/08/2014: Rippers, Pye Boat Noodles, Rockaway Taco, Khao Man Gai NY.
Added 07/03/2014: Pastes Kiko's, Arepa Lady, Spicy Lanka.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Spicy Lanka

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159-23 Hillside Ave
Queens, NY 11432
Times critic Ligaya Mishan enjoyed her meals at this Sri Lankan restaurant in Jamaica. She recommends the potato and kingfish rolls, the vegetarian thali (the curry changes daily) and the string hoppers, which are rounds of rice flour noodles served with yellow curry. [Facebook]

2. Arepa Lady

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77-02a Roosevelt ave
Queens, NY
Street food legend Maria Cano and her family just debuted a restaurant devoted to their famous arepas. The restaurant opened without a menu or any signage, but the early word indicates that Cano is serving a slightly wider selection of arepas than she offers at her cart. [Foursqare]

3. Pastes Kiko's

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89-16 Roosevelt Ave.
Jackson Heights, NY 11372
Robert Siestema recently discovered that popular Mexican chain Pastes Kiko's expanded to Elmhurst not too long ago. The menu at the only New York location of the chain has about 20 sweet and savory hand pies. Robert's verdict: "The quality of the pastries and filling varies, but for Mexican food enthusiasts who track every new regional cuisine that arrives here for the first time, Pastes Kiko's is a place you should visit"

4. Rippers

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86th St Boardwalk
Queens, NY 11693
The seasonal restaurant from Roberta's and The Meat Hook has returned for the summer. In addition to burgers, fries, and dogs, the menu includes a fried fish sandwich, fresh squeezed juices, and breakfast burritos. Rippers is open from 10 a.m. till 8 p.m. daily, and the restaurant also offers delivery in the area. [Photo]

5. Pye Boat Noodle

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Read Review |
35-13 Broadway
Astoria, NY 11106
(718) 685-2329
Visit Website
In addition to soups and dry noodle dishes, this authentic Thai restaurant serves snacks like shrimp dumplings, taro rolls, and fried pork strips. Asian food aficionado Joe DiStefano, and the neighborhood experts at We Heart Astoria both had enjoyable meals here recently. [Facebook]

6. Rockaway Taco

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95-19 Rockaway Beach Blvd
Queens, NY 11693
(347) 213-7466
Visit Website
The beloved taco shack near the Rockaway Beach boardwalk is now open for business, with a menu that includes fish tacos, quesadillas, and corn on the cob. This year, Rockaway Taco is using vegetables from nearby Edgemere Farm. Pro tip: Breakfast is served Thursday through Sunday from 9 a.m. till 10:45 a.m. [Rockaway Taco]

7. Khao Man Gai NY @ The Food Box

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3100 47th Ave
Queens, NY 11101
Hungry City critic Ligaya Mishan recently praised chef Emorn Henshaw's nuanced version of Thai chicken over rice at this stand inside the Falchi Building's food court. In addition to that signature dish, Khao Man Gai NY also serves chicken wings and broth-less tom yum noodles. The stand is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday. [Facebook]

8. Mapo Korean BBQ

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Read Review |
14924 41st Road
Murray Hill, NY 11355
(718) 886-8292
At this Korean barbecue restaurant in Murray Hill, the meat is cooked at the table over lump charcoal, and the entrees come with a wide assortment of banchan plates. In his three-star review, Sietsema recommends the marinated kalbi, the mandoo gui dumplings, and the mul naeng myun noodles. [Krieger]

9. Fatty's

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45-17 28th Ave
Astoria, NY 11103
(718) 267-7071
10-year-old neighborhood favorite Fatty's recently moved to a bigger, brighter location on 28th Avenue. The restaurant is currently serving the "classic" menu from the old location, which includes sandwiches, salads, and Latin-influenced bar bites, but expect some new additions in the coming months. Most entrees are priced in the mid teens. [Foursquare]

10. Hibino LIC

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10-70 Jackson Ave
Queens, NY 11101
(718) 392-5190
Visit Website
The owners of Cobble Hill Japanese favorite Hibino recently opened a sunny new location in Long Island City. Just like the Brooklyn original, the new restaurant offers sushi, salads, homemade tofu dishes, and entrees like teriyaki chicken and broiled miso-marinated salmon. The kitchen uses top-notch ingredients, and many of the entrees are priced under $20. [Photo: Hibino]

11. EIM Khao Mun Kai

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8132 Broadway
Elmhurst, NY 11373
(347) 554-4862
The Yelpers love this tiny new Elmhurst restaurant dedicated to Hainanese chicken and rice. For $8.99, you can get a plate of juicy chicken over jasmine rice with soup and a handful of sauces on the side. Head over to Chopstick and Marrow for a close-up look at the specialty dish here. [Photo: Yelp]

12. Maizal Astoria

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32-07 34th Ave
Astoria, NY 11106
(718) 406-9431
Visit Website
The team behind Staten Island Mexican restaurant Maizal recently opened a second outpost on 34th Avenue in Astoria. Maizal serves a slightly upscale version of traditional Mexican cuisine made with top-notch ingredients, some of which are imported directly from Mexico. The menu includes a section devoted to vegan and vegetarian entrees, and the restaurant offers a $19 three-course prix fixe Tuesday through Thursday. [Photo: Maizal/Facebook]

1. Spicy Lanka

159-23 Hillside Ave, Queens, NY 11432
Times critic Ligaya Mishan enjoyed her meals at this Sri Lankan restaurant in Jamaica. She recommends the potato and kingfish rolls, the vegetarian thali (the curry changes daily) and the string hoppers, which are rounds of rice flour noodles served with yellow curry. [Facebook]
159-23 Hillside Ave
Queens, NY 11432

2. Arepa Lady

77-02a Roosevelt ave, Queens, NY
Street food legend Maria Cano and her family just debuted a restaurant devoted to their famous arepas. The restaurant opened without a menu or any signage, but the early word indicates that Cano is serving a slightly wider selection of arepas than she offers at her cart. [Foursqare]
77-02a Roosevelt ave
Queens, NY

3. Pastes Kiko's

89-16 Roosevelt Ave., Jackson Heights, NY 11372
Robert Siestema recently discovered that popular Mexican chain Pastes Kiko's expanded to Elmhurst not too long ago. The menu at the only New York location of the chain has about 20 sweet and savory hand pies. Robert's verdict: "The quality of the pastries and filling varies, but for Mexican food enthusiasts who track every new regional cuisine that arrives here for the first time, Pastes Kiko's is a place you should visit"
89-16 Roosevelt Ave.
Jackson Heights, NY 11372

4. Rippers

86th St Boardwalk, Queens, NY 11693
The seasonal restaurant from Roberta's and The Meat Hook has returned for the summer. In addition to burgers, fries, and dogs, the menu includes a fried fish sandwich, fresh squeezed juices, and breakfast burritos. Rippers is open from 10 a.m. till 8 p.m. daily, and the restaurant also offers delivery in the area. [Photo]
86th St Boardwalk
Queens, NY 11693

5. Pye Boat Noodle

35-13 Broadway, Astoria, NY 11106
Read Review |
In addition to soups and dry noodle dishes, this authentic Thai restaurant serves snacks like shrimp dumplings, taro rolls, and fried pork strips. Asian food aficionado Joe DiStefano, and the neighborhood experts at We Heart Astoria both had enjoyable meals here recently. [Facebook]
35-13 Broadway
Astoria, NY 11106

6. Rockaway Taco

95-19 Rockaway Beach Blvd, Queens, NY 11693
The beloved taco shack near the Rockaway Beach boardwalk is now open for business, with a menu that includes fish tacos, quesadillas, and corn on the cob. This year, Rockaway Taco is using vegetables from nearby Edgemere Farm. Pro tip: Breakfast is served Thursday through Sunday from 9 a.m. till 10:45 a.m. [Rockaway Taco]
95-19 Rockaway Beach Blvd
Queens, NY 11693

7. Khao Man Gai NY @ The Food Box

3100 47th Ave, Queens, NY 11101
Hungry City critic Ligaya Mishan recently praised chef Emorn Henshaw's nuanced version of Thai chicken over rice at this stand inside the Falchi Building's food court. In addition to that signature dish, Khao Man Gai NY also serves chicken wings and broth-less tom yum noodles. The stand is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday. [Facebook]
3100 47th Ave
Queens, NY 11101

8. Mapo Korean BBQ

14924 41st Road, Murray Hill, NY 11355
Read Review |
At this Korean barbecue restaurant in Murray Hill, the meat is cooked at the table over lump charcoal, and the entrees come with a wide assortment of banchan plates. In his three-star review, Sietsema recommends the marinated kalbi, the mandoo gui dumplings, and the mul naeng myun noodles. [Krieger]
14924 41st Road
Murray Hill, NY 11355

9. Fatty's

45-17 28th Ave, Astoria, NY 11103
10-year-old neighborhood favorite Fatty's recently moved to a bigger, brighter location on 28th Avenue. The restaurant is currently serving the "classic" menu from the old location, which includes sandwiches, salads, and Latin-influenced bar bites, but expect some new additions in the coming months. Most entrees are priced in the mid teens. [Foursquare]
45-17 28th Ave
Astoria, NY 11103

10. Hibino LIC

10-70 Jackson Ave, Queens, NY 11101
The owners of Cobble Hill Japanese favorite Hibino recently opened a sunny new location in Long Island City. Just like the Brooklyn original, the new restaurant offers sushi, salads, homemade tofu dishes, and entrees like teriyaki chicken and broiled miso-marinated salmon. The kitchen uses top-notch ingredients, and many of the entrees are priced under $20. [Photo: Hibino]
10-70 Jackson Ave
Queens, NY 11101

11. EIM Khao Mun Kai

8132 Broadway, Elmhurst, NY 11373
The Yelpers love this tiny new Elmhurst restaurant dedicated to Hainanese chicken and rice. For $8.99, you can get a plate of juicy chicken over jasmine rice with soup and a handful of sauces on the side. Head over to Chopstick and Marrow for a close-up look at the specialty dish here. [Photo: Yelp]
8132 Broadway
Elmhurst, NY 11373

12. Maizal Astoria

32-07 34th Ave, Astoria, NY 11106
The team behind Staten Island Mexican restaurant Maizal recently opened a second outpost on 34th Avenue in Astoria. Maizal serves a slightly upscale version of traditional Mexican cuisine made with top-notch ingredients, some of which are imported directly from Mexico. The menu includes a section devoted to vegan and vegetarian entrees, and the restaurant offers a $19 three-course prix fixe Tuesday through Thursday. [Photo: Maizal/Facebook]
32-07 34th Ave
Astoria, NY 11106

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