Wow, what changes in a year. More pizza, more burgers, ramen fever, Peruvian, Japanese, and a Michelin star! The local dining scene feels more like Manhattan every day. Nevertheless, I’ve hopped aboard the latest fad, the Bushwick baby-food diet. Picture it: men with beards and $800 boots eating jars of baby food with baby spoons. Brooklyn has seven of these restaurants already, one with a $120 tasting menu! I hear Jean Georges is scouting locations to open the first one in Tribeca, and Chipotle has fired up its test kitchens to bring it to the masses. For now though, here’s the Long Island City 2015 Restaurant Round-up. Bon Appetit!
Station LIC – another pub with good grub in LIC? Sure, why not! Sole proprietors coming to LIC should always be commended. Cool space too.
Beast Next Door – Court Square gets its own much-needed gastropub/coffee bar.
Mu Ramen – the first of what is sure to be a mega-chain. Like Ray Kroc w/ burger n fries, 30 years from now you’ll be able to tell your grandkids how you were served uni and noodles by the Smooklers
Il Falco – started by former employees of Il Mulino. Who needs to schlep to W. 3rd St. when you can stroll to Court Square? Plus, I hear getting a rezzy is not the same burden.
Fortune Cookie – old restaurant, new location, same food
Dunkin’ Donuts 21st Street – judging by number of locations, I’d call this a staple ‘meal’
Bareburger – is this a chain or isn’t it? You be the judge when it opens in mid-February according to the LIC Post. If it is, will this be a trend for LIC?
Bia on Jackson – right across the street from the Citi building, this is an outpost of a Williamsburg Vietnamese gastropub. In glancing at the website, think the food of Cyclo: banh mi’s, spring rolls, and noodle soups; and the look, feel, and booze options of Alewife.
COMING NOT SO SOON
Trattoria L’Incontro – big time dining comes to Hunters Point sometime between March and May according to owner/chef Rocco Sacramone. Given the stature of the Astoria location and the waterside setting, this will be a major destination restaurant for all of NYC more than a staple for those in LIC. There will be some new menu additions, and unlike the the existing restaurant, this one will have a full bar. Expect big crowds and maybe a few limos on Center Blvd. We’ve hit the big time.
Bierocracy – a 200-seat beer hall coming to Jackson and 47th Road. Structural issues w/ the building have pushed back the opening from December. When it gets here, it’ll buck the craft brew trend by pouring beers from eastern Europe and serving food from the same region, so you’ll be able to imbibe just like your great grandpappy did.
Tamashii Ramen – a second location in LIC will be offering ramen. This one on Vernon next to Snob Nail Salon, will also be the second location for the owner, who owns a ramen joint in Astoria.
Sushi TBD – a new sushi restaurant is also scheduled to open on Vernon next to Petey’s Burgers. So you can grab an order of fries with your spicy tuna roll, just like they do it in Japan. Right?
In other news:
Korean Chef Raised in Jewish Household Now Serves Japanese Cuisine – i’ll take a pastrami on rice, hold the wasabi
ODA’s Stack of Boxes Takes Shape in LIC – pretty cool residential building architecturally, going up adjacent to 5Pointz
Modern Spaces Sells a Stake In Itself to NJ Duo – the Kushner family looks to add marketing muscle to the Jersey side of the Hudson
5Pointz Artists Protest Developers Attempts to Trademark Name – the building’s gone but the fight continues
Proposal At The Waterfront – great pictorial in the HufPo of a local couple’s proposal in Gantry State Park