Queens Comfort

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So, I’d been hearing a lot about this place for a number of months. And, as it usually happens with my schedule, and the intricate  formula that is, “it’ll take me X amount of time to get there + my schedule is Y = damn, I’m not going to make it”, I haven’t been able to go. Until now! Ok, let me clarify, I went, but “Y” informed me that I didn’t have a lot of time, so, I got some treats to-go from Queens Comfort in Astoria, Queens.

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Now, this unassuming restaurant always has a healthy wait during brunch, which, is when my schedule allowed me to make it over. So, you know they’re doing something right. I’ve promised myself that I will make it back for a proper sit-down meal, because the menu looks awesome. But, in the meantime, I got my fix with a couple baked goods from their resident baker, dubbed the Donut Diva. And, the name is very fitting, since, she knows how to make a delicious treat. First, I had the cookie of that day (often a different flavor, or rotating flavors, so, check their social media, or, just be a sport, since, it’s probably going to be awesome no matter what flavor it is), which was Snickerdoodle Rolo. I’d like to consider myself somewhat of a cookie connoisseur, I’ve eaten a ton and know what I like, and, well, what I know I’ll be staying away from. This cookie, was legit. Generously sized, it really has the perfect combination that I love of a slightly crisp outside and edges, and a soft, almost under-baked center, making it soft, chewy, and melts in your mouth. The flavors were great, and you get these awesome bites with gooey caramel from the Rolo candies. Even though it’s a cookie, with candy inside, it’s not too sweet, which, makes it all too easy to house the entire thing. But, what are you saving it for anyway?

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Then, I had to get a donut from the Donut Diva (because, what the hell sense would it make if I didn’t?). Now, the donuts are primarily only available on the weekends, which, even though I knew about the brunch lines, I had to go for the donut. And, just like the cookies, there’s likely to be a different flavor each time. So, you just have to be up for the adventure, or, check Instagram to see what’s on tap before you go. When I went, they had Candy Corn Marshmallow. Now, I’m a candy person, so, I love candy corn, but I realize it’s one of those polarizing candies. Luckily for me, it’s all positive. The cake donut itself is also generous in size, and had the candy corn within the donut’s batter itself. The cake is great, it’s a little crisp on the outside, nice and golden, and tastes just like a griddle cake. Then, there was a marshmallow-esc glaze on the outside, giving it a nice delicate compliment to the donut and candy corn. And, one of the best parts is the waste-free zone. I hate waste, and apparently these guys understand, so each donut is complete with its own donut hole on top. Adorable. And, somewhat of a bonus dessert. Again, like the cookie, while the donut looks intense, it’s not overly sweet, also allowing me to stuff the entire thing in my face and not feeling a gross sugar rush. 

The Shorts:
Name: Queens Comfort
Location: 40-09 30th Avenue, Queens
The Long and The Short: Would I go back? Definitely. I mean, I need to go for a meal there, but, even if that’s not in the cards, the donuts and cookies are worth a trip back.
Would I recommend it? Yes. If you’re lucky enough to carve out some time for brunch, get there early and beat the big wait. If not, they’re open for lunch and dinner during the week as well.

Speedy Romeo

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NYC and pizza. It’s either an over saturated market, or, just fulfilling demand. And, NYC is known, aside from Italy, of course, from doing it best (sorry, Chicago, keep your deep-dish, we’re focusing on NYC for now). So, it was time for me to check out Speedy Romeo on the Lower East Side, to see what they were turning out. 

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The LES location just opened this week, as their second. The first location is in Brooklyn, and named after the co-owner’s family’s prize race horse (he’s got a picture hung up on the wall and everything, and, yes, he’s very adorable). All the pizza is made in a hardwood fired Italian pizza oven. But before all that, had to start with a beverage. I had their Hot Trot (sparkling rose, aperol, smoked jalapeño rhubarb, lemon juice, soda, fresh basil). Now, aside from this pink beauty looking lovely, the taste was awesome. Upon first sips, it is a bit on the sweet side, but then you get the heat from the jalapeño, balancing it out for a nice sweet and spicy combination. 

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As an appetizer, I had the Grilled Octopus (Almond Romesco, Crispy Potato, Celery). Now, if you’re a regular here to SOF, you well know that I L-O-V-E grilled octopus. And, yeah, I’ve had some pretty awful dishes before. But, luckily for these guys, they absolutely pass the test here. This was so delicious. The octopus was perfectly done, nice and tender, but still maintaining that slight char on the outside, lending a smokiness. Potatoes, on point. Crisp on the outside and soft in the middle. But, let’s talk about this almond romesco real quick. Dear Speedy Romeo, Can you please bottle this up and send a vat of it to me so that I can pour it over everything? Thanks. The pepper and almond sauce is so savory and flavorful, with a really great texture, pairing wonderfully with the octopus, the potatoes, my fork…yeah. 

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For my entree, I ordered The Marinara (Tomato Sauce, Anchovy, Basil, Oregano, Sea Salt) and added Olives. Ok, so, I don’t know if it’s supposed to be a personal pizza or meant to share, but, I personally ordered it, so, it was all mine. However, I only got through a few slices, and boxed the rest up, which, only lasted until I got back home (it’s science, your stomach needs about an hour to make a new space available for left-over pizza). The pizza is thin, and a bit delicate, so, it could totally be the type you fork-and-knife. However, I went in and ate with my hands (I’m a beast). The ingredients and flavors are really fresh, I enjoyed the sweet and tanginess of the tomato sauce, and the added saltiness from the anchovy and added olives. The crust is really nice as well, with just enough chew from the delicately flavored dough, with just the right about of char along the dough’s baked air bubbles. 

The Shorts:
Name: Speedy Romeo
Location: 63 Clinton Street, NYC
The Long and Short: Would I go back? For sure. The service was excellent, and the food was super tasty. And, their brunch menu will be rolling out, including a smoked salmon pizza, that has my name all over it. 
Would I recommend it? Yes. It’s the perfect spot for a really low-key meal with great flavors and enough options for everyone.