Tag Archives: queens eats

Pao de Queijo

My friend Jeff from Foodmento organized an instagrammer event at Pao de Queijo, a Brazilian sandwich and burger joint in Astoria. Lucky for me, I was invited!


This place also slings some really great smoothies and shakes, like this “Verano” shake, with pineapple, coconut and graviola (similar in flavor to a mango).


This hit the spot and was super refreshing on such a hot, sunny day.

With a bunch of instagrammers on hand, there was a barrage of sandwich pics and stack shots going on.





I managed to grab half of two sandwiches/burgers that I was really interested in trying. On the top/right in the pics below is the “X Banana” burger, which is a beef burger with banana, cheese, corn, potato sticks, lettuce, tomato and mayo. On the bottom/left is the “X Brazil” sandwich, consisting of sliced beef, cheese, egg, Brazilian sausage, corn, potato sticks, lettuce, tomato and mayo.





Both were really great. I preferred the burger over the steak sandwich, mainly because the burger was more properly seasoned, and that banana was a great surprise that really drove some standout flavors. The burger patties have herbs and spices in the mix, which make these burgers very unique among the landscape of other burger joints.

“X Banana” Burger:


The “X Brazil” was great in concept. I have two critiques: I think the steak just needed a bit more salt before it hit the grill, and perhaps the sausage should be chopped up a bit before it gets put onto the sandwich, that way your teeth don’t have to work through the snappy casing as much when biting down. Otherwise I loved it, and I would definitely order this again without any second thoughts.

“X Brazil” Sandwich:


The best part about these sandwiches is that they’re properly constructed to minimize slippage and crap falling out the sides, which could otherwise make for a messy eating experience. The bread surrounds the contents nicely, and they’re wrapped compact enough so that it’s easy to get your whole mouth around for a bite.

There is so much more to try on their menu, like a burger with pineapple, or sandwiches with ham and chicken thrown into the mix. The sandwiches and burgers run anywhere from $3.75 for a simple ham and cheese to $12.50 for the “X Brazil.” Very reasonable.

Fries come separate at $3, and they’re really great when you add some of the green sauce on them, which you can find on each table.


But the real star(s) of the “side show” are the restaurant’s namesake: Pao de Queijo, or cheese breads.


These toasty little balls are a bread dough that’s been kneaded and mixed with cheese. The outside is crisp and warm, and the inside is a cross between bread and cheese. So awesome, so soft, so tasty… but beware: these things are fucking addicting.

In fact, as a promotion from this Instagram event, when you go here, if you mention the word “acai” you will get three free Pao de Queijo (three balls).

And speaking of acai, if you’re still hungry for dessert after all that sandwich gorging, or if you’re dieting for some ridiculous reason, then grab an acai bowl while you’re here.


This one has acai puree on the bottom, which was like a cold berry soup, and is topped with bananas, mango, granola and mint.

31-90 30th St
Astoria, NY 11106

Premium Sweets

After eating Bangladeshi food across the street, a group of us walked into this joint for dessert.

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The display case glowed with interesting shit I’d never tasted before.

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We tried several items, most of which had similar flavors (dense, yet sugary and moist quasi-cakes), but each was packaged and presented with different textures, colors, etc.

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The most interesting was this spherical thing that had smaller spherical things attached to it like sprinkles. In the middle was a pink colored paste of some kind. It tasted like a very light cheese cake.

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This actually tasted like sweet cheese in a creamy cold broth.

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But my favorite was this snaggle of deliciousness, which was essentially a honey-soaked funnel cake. It was crispy on the outside but juicy through and through. When biting down on it, the liquefied honey just oozed out like squeezing a dessert sponge. Yum!

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3714 73rd St
Jackson Heights, NY 11372

Haat Bazaar

My first foray into Bangladeshi food was a good one. A buddy of mine, who hails from Bangladesh, took me, my wife, and a few other friends here to give us a taste of the cuisine.

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Many people, including Yelp, seem to lump this cuisine in with Indian food, but I was thinking the flavors of Bangladeshi food are more aromatic. The dishes have more of a floral “nose” to them (possibly some rose water in the rice dishes), and are less sweet than the Indian food that I’m familiar with. There is a similar earthy spice regimen to Indian, but Bangladeshi food is definitely distinct enough, even aside from the proteins (beef is generally not found in most Indian joints, and fish has a bigger presence in Bangladeshi food).

We tried a pair of rice dishes. One had goat as the protein, and was biryani style. Both came with hard boiled egg as well, but the one served with the goat had a breading over it that was really interesting. The goat meat was surprisingly tender and not greasy, though I preferred the chicken dish to a huge degree. The chicken was moist and tender (it was a leg), and the smaller grain rice that came with it had a “fried rice” quality that was really delicious.

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The beef was super tender. It was roughly chopped, so you had to be mindful of bones, but the end product was a very “melt in your mouth” braised quality. The same goes for this chicken dish, which was cooked and prepared in a similar way:

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The fish was interesting. While not my favorite, it was cooked properly and remained juicy, flakey and moist. The shrimp, on the other hand, was a bit overcooked and slightly grainy as a result.

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All in this was a pretty great meal. There was more food too, that I didn’t shoot. We ate like kings and I think the bill came to about $14 each, including tax and tip. Awesome value.

I think the joint could benefit from a cleaner environment, however. Tables turn over very fast, as the place is super busy ALL THE TIME, so you get some grub leftover on the tables as a result. That being said, this is a no-frills joint, with food pre-prepared and ready to roll from under a glass counter where everything is kept on warmers. So go into it knowing that it is fast casual, not a fancy sit-down place. Also – eating with your hands is encouraged!

3711 73rd St
Flushing, NY 11372