Astoria is not a very pretty place, yet it oozes character in a way that few places in America still do in the 21st century. Whenever I envision Astoria, I cannot help but think of the french phrase jolie-laide. Every block is more hideous than the last1, architecturally at least. It all culminates on Steinway Street, where every defunct retail store from the 1980’s and 90’s is resurrected, or having it’s last gasp. One can’t find a single item of clothing on Steinway that wouldn’t be classified as cheesy, not one.
But oh the food in Astoria! Whether it be restaurants or shops, there isn’t a more eclectic culinary location in the city, and maybe the planet. Moreover, the street scene in Astoria is better than any show currently playing on Broadway, as it transports you back to, well the 80’s and 90’s. Plus a helping of the 70’s and even a sprinkle of the 50’s and 60’s.
As you know, most of The Editor’s travels are to more upscale locales. Think Gstaad, Ibiza, and Sun Valley. So this is only my second road trip to places tangential to LIC. But if your G650 or yacht is down for service, or your former step-fathers house in Southampton or Nantucket is occupied by his new, younger family this week, then I recommend a little jaunt on the N/R line to Astoria. After one shot of ouzo and another of cachaca, you too will be sporting a new tank top and eating lamb skewers on the street.
Food, Real Estate, Food, Real Estate – both topics dominate this weeks news but since it’s the weekend, we’ll start with food. Especially since the real estate picture is so bleak …unless you’re TF Avalon. Hey, you can’t say we didn’t tell you so in our 2014 Real E-State of The Union.
Il Falco Opens – go get your fill of upscale Italian by two Il Mulino alums
Mu Ramen Reveals Its Menu – in what could be the most anticipated opening in NYC this fall, Mu Ramen in LIC gives a peek of what’s to come
Concession Stand Opens at Gantry Plaza, Called the Ice Box – why don’t you wait until mid-August why don’t you?
Manhattan Rental Market is Stagnant as Frustrated Tenants Flee to the Boroughs – “rental deals in Brooklyn and Queens are way up.” Hmm, I don’t know about “deals”
Brooklyn and Queens See Tons of New Renters, So Prices Rise – so higher demand and lower supply mean higher prices, got it
Tour the Giant New Rental Behind the Pepsi Sign – TF Cornerstone’s final Center Boulevard building is now 70% occupied -we told you rents on Center Blvd were set to start rising again
FIVE Forty-One in Hunters Point Launches Sales – three 3-bdrm apts, because “A number of the buyers who are coming to see the building live in Long Island City. They are quickly outgrowing their apartments. These buyers are torn because they would love to stay in the area.” Hmm, they know the market here and fill the niche.
A House that Uses 90% Less Energy Than Yours – Bloomberg goes inside the Blue Townhouse on 11th Street
- of course this could also be said of large chunks of LIC too [↩]