a day in Jackson Heights Queens

It was super cold and many of the restaurants were quite cold too but we went to Jackson Heights to experience the neighborhood which is a melting pot of Argentines, Columbians, South and East Asians. Everytime I do this it makes me love NYC even more.  The diversity of each neighborhood throughout the boroughs of NYC can sometimes feel like you just got off a flight out of JFK and landed in another country.  

Our first stop was Patel Brothers.  A one stop shop for all of your Indian grocery needs.  I have never seen these frozen goods in the freezer section at my local grocery store.

Loads of Partha, flat breads.

Karela which is esentialily a type of sour gourd that has multiple health benefits.

Spices and such
I love the rows of beans, flours and spices at really great prices.  

This branding of soup is brilliant.  They know who their customer is.  

I even bought some of the chips.

We walked across the street to a store that sold used cell phones and other electronics at 37-50 74th Street.  Inside all the way to the back is a small dumpling shop.  We ordered a round of vegetable dumplings and the woman made them for us from scratch.  

They were delicious.  Fill with a variety of greens.  

Our next stop was Bombay Chat.  The place seemed a little run down but we went with it.   They supposedly have the best pani puri.  We asked for a plate and the lady running the store just smiled. She filled up the small crispy balls from a bowl of rice, potatoes and chick peas.  It appeared to come straight from her kitchen.  

Potpurri in jackson heights - me
We sat down at a table and the man eating his lunch told us what to do.  Pour a little of the darker sauce that was like a vegetable broth on top and then a little of the chili sauce.  Eat the entire thing in one bite.  Delicious!

We took a walk around the streets popping into the fast food food hall where a large tv hung showing an Indian channel.  We walked into another place that had a buffet.  We ended up at Phayul.  Located on the 2nd floor of a building.  We both had a soup.  The beef broth in this soup was delicious and perfect for a cold day.  

Rajbhog Sweets was next.  The colors of all the desserts are amazing but would be helpful go to with someone who actually knew what to pick.  

We got in our car and drove over to Cositas Ricas for a cup of coffee.  Not sure coffee is what to get here but this place is a classic diner.  Some people were eating steak with rice and vegetables while others were eating sweets.  Donuts are also available.

Our last shop before returning to the city was Cannelle Patisserie.  Located in an outdoor shopping mall.  Even the bakery felt a little bit like being deep in the suburbs but the desserts were really good.  A true French bakery.  We tasted a few things like the lemon tart and the pound cake and got more than plenty to bring home.  

We missed out on one place I really wanted to go to which is Cevicheria El Rey because we hit the savory wall but looking forward to returning when the weather warms up.  

Comments (Archived):

  1. laurie kalmanson

    Hungry now

    1. Gotham Gal

      So much fun!

  2. Guest


  3. zainabz

    Joanne, pani puri is my favorite chaat (chaat is Hindi for fast food). The best way to eat it is from a street side vendor who will give you a small bowl to hold, stuff each puri (the crisp, puffed ball), dunk it in the pani (the flavored water, Pani is Hindi for water) and place the dripping concoction into your bowl. You then put the whole thing in your mouth. No biting! Your mouth experiences a spicy flood followed by the warm, soft aftermath of the potatoes and chickpeas. It is the ultimate experience.If you are eating at a restaurant like you were, I suggest, next time, dunk your stuffed puri into the bowl of pani instead of filling it in by the spoonfuls.If you become a fan, you can find pani puri kits at Indian grocery stores like the Patel’s and can make them at home.Long time reader of your blog and enjoy every post but never commented. Saw the pani puris today and could not resist 🙂

  4. DANA


  5. Rohan

    Another pani puri inspired hello. 🙂

  6. Jerome Gentolia

    Always loved your culinary adventures Joanne, I used to live in Woodside not too far there. Can’t wait what you’ll write next!

    1. Gotham Gal


  7. pointsnfigures

    New website, Hunting and Gathering in NYC.

  8. TanyaMonteiro

    This type of adventure was a staple in my life while I lived in the city, nothing would make me happier than discovering new diverse shops and neighbourhoods. Now, every time you go on one of your adventures I get to enjoy NYC life from afar and feel like I am there. So cool, thank you