If you are ever considering moving out of New York, take an afternoon to walk around Flushing first. Get some dumplings, dim sum, and egg custards inside yourself, by visiting some of the establishments described below. Then get back to us. We think you might change your mind.
In a neighborhood teeming with hole in the wall dumpling spots, this is THE hole in the wall dumpling spot. You want the wontons in chili oil. And you probably want to add more chili sauce once your steaming styrofoam plate arrives. Every day that we eat a salad for lunch we close our eyes and pretend to be eating a hot batch of these.
You’re here for one thing and one thing only – the $1 duck buns. Originally sold out of a stall in the middle of Main Street, these buns have moved indoors into this crazy crowded food court. Head straight back when you enter and you’ll see a crew carving duck up like its their job (pretty sure that it is, actually). Soft bun, good duck, excellent sauce. Get one if you’re just passing by, but four of them will make a solid lunch, so don’t be shy.
If crowded pushing and shoving isn’t your thing, come out to Jade for some breathing room and dim sum. The main dining room is massive, and there are even private areas along the back. It is definitely going to be loud and full of locals by the time you show up, but it is VIP treatment compared to some of the other places we’re sending you. Like a (spoiled fat) kid in a candy store, just point and grab anything that looks good as the wait staff wheels by. Come early – dim sum is breakfast, and the carts slowly but surely run out of the best bites.
A can’t miss member of our dumpling map, this spot has the best soup dumplings around, and arguably the best in all of NYC. Order these right when you sit down (crab and pork, please) as they can take a bit to arrive. And while you should come for the soup dumps, you should stay for everything else. The scallion pancakes with sliced beef are…mmpphh…and the pan fried udon is aces as well. If you show up early on a weekend, peep the breakfast part of the menu and get an order of the crispy dough and sweet soy milk. Think churros and a sweet dipping sauce. Every table will have a plate of these on it. Lines are the norm, so plan accordingly and come prepared (AKA starving).
Instead of 2,000 calorie Cinnabons, the food court in the basement of this mall has dumplings, noodles, and a whole lot of beef tendons. Start at Tianjin Dumpling House and get yourself an order of the lamb and green squash dumplings. From there, grab a table around the corner at Xi’an Famous Foods. Yes, you can go to the East Village, Chinatown, or Midtown location these days, but this basement dwelling is the original, so pay your respects. We’re partial to the spicy cumin lamb burger but the noodle dishes are good too, especially the pork “zha jiang.” If the pictured menu on the wall doesn’t look appetizing, you’re wrong. If it does, let’s date. Finish up your crawl at Lanzhou Handmade Noodles for, well, handmade noodles. Even if you got some at Xi’an, double it up with an order from this spot. Noodle-off y’all!
Another food court in another shopping mall, New World is squeaky clean and full blown 21st century compared to the Golden Shopping Mall. Even if you are done eating for the day, make it a point to come check this place out. It is always busy and has a dozen-plus options to chose from. You never know when the right smell might hit and inspire you to make room for just one…more…bite.
Anytime a bakery consistently sells out of a single item before lunch, you should take notice. We certainly do. Good sweets are good sweets, and the egg custard out here is good f*cking sweets. Get there and get one before they’re done for the day.
Bubble tea is not hard to find in this hood, but Ten Ren is our go-to favorite. We usually opt for the green tea, or if we’re in the mood for something sweet, the taro is tops.
With more desserts and more tea, this spot is nice for a quick pop on a cold day. Order a hot cup and browse the dessert menu for things you aren’t going to find in most other cafes, like the green tea crepe cake.