Astoria is known for it’s great food – restaurants and shops, mostly – and over recent years it has seen more and more street food. Here are some of the best we’ve come across (so far).
The Tamale Lady
Originally profiled in our Unsung Tacos of Astoria post, the discovery of the tamale lady – AKA Socorro Carranza – was a beautiful thing. She serves up delicious tamales on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday mornings on Broadway near 37th Street. You can find her near the Delgado Travel sign. Tamales are $1.25 and she sells a variety of tamales – spicy chicken, queso, and sweet pink tamales, just to name a few. You can also purchase champurrado (masa based drink) and arroz con leche (think loose rice pudding) from her.
El Rey Del Taco Truck
This is Astoria’s most well-known taco truck. They have locations on both 30th Avenue (in front of the Rite Aid) and Ditmars Blvd (in front of the CVS at 31st Street), though I must admit I prefer the 30th Avenue truck. You can choose among a variety of Mexican classics – quesadillas, tacos, and huaraches (they make the masa boat fresh for each order), and you can even get a Philly cheesesteak there.
King of Falafel
Freddy, the proprietor of this cart, has won the coveted Vendy Award twice – in 2009 and 2010 – and shows no sign of resting on his laurels. He and his assistants are out there 6 days a week from 11am to 9pm, creating some of the best street food in all of Queens. Take your pick – awesome tubular shaped falafel, chicken and rice, beef and chicken kebabs, and shawarma. Be sure to get both white sauce and hot sauce, no matter what you order. And while you’re in line, you might be lucky enough to be handed a freshly made falafel to munch on while you wait; his cart is extremely popular, so there is often a line of people waiting to order. Many of the dishes come with a side salad, which is made up of lettuce and tomato and their wonderful pickled vegetables – try the pickled turnip! Broadway and 30th Street. -Excerpt from Food Lovers’ Guide to Queens
King of Souvlaki
We’ve recently seen increased chatter about this place, including an article by our own Tastoria Queens, as well as over on Astorians.com. Some feel they have the best souvlaki in Astoria. Apparently they’ve been at the corner of 31st Street and 31st Avenue since 1979 and have developed quite a following. They do both chicken and lamb on a stick, in a pita, and on a platter. Their french fries are cooked in olive oil, which is a nice touch. Check them out and let us know what you think.
This is a newcomer to the street food scene in Astoria and they make some tasty food. They use organic chicken and their tortillas are from Tortilleria Nixtama in Corona. Their guacamole is made fresh every day, and it’s great. They also sell horchata, one of my favorites, and a variety of other auguas frescas. Personally, I love the chicken taco with cheese – the meat has a lovely smoky taste to it, and the cheese adds extra richness and savory flavor. Yum. Keep an eye out for their terrific special – 2 tacos, 1 guacamole and chips, and any drink for $10. 31st Street near Ditmars.
Are there other Astoria street food vendors you think we should know about? Let us know in the comments or via twitter at @weheartastoria!