Jul 15, 2016

Astoria News and Rumors, Summer 2016 Edition

An update on the news and rumors we’ve been hearing over the past few months, all in one place.

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On a day that feels so serious after a horrific day of violence, we offer you this brief respite of news, rumors, and Pokéman Go in the neighborhood.

More Pokémon Go

First, let’s get the Pokéman Go info on the table. This week, we’ve learned that Pokémon have been spotted at The Queens Kickshaw, Bubba’s Bistro, and The Thirsty Koala in Astoria; SculptureCenter and Communitea in LIC; and Thalia Theatre in Sunnyside. And this Sunday there’s going to be a Pokémon Go bar crawl in Astoria. Details:

“Come out for the 1st Pokemon Go Bar Crawl in Astoria. We will be starting our bar crawl in Sweet Afton at 1 PM. We will move to the following bars afterwards: Judy and Punch, Dominies, and Diamond Dogs [in that order].”

Astoria Flea Returns

As a reminder, Astoria Flea returns in a night market format for the next three Saturdays in a row, 7pm to Midnight.

Astoria Flea and Food logo

Pancetta Alert

Meat eaters, this one’s for you—pancetta is ready from the great folks at Muncan on Broadway:

“Finally ready! Our small batch 18 month aged, smoked and rolled pancetta with hints of cumin and cayenne. Available at our Astoria location now and both stores beginning on Tuesday. Get some before it’s gone!”


Photo credit: Muncan Foods

Astoria Fishery

Perhaps a little gentler on the flesh front (or not), the Astoria Fishery has finally left their long-time space by the Ditmars stop and moved into California Farmers Market a block away.

Lockwood + Sekend Sun

Bring your Lockwood receipt into nearby Sekend Sun and get 10% off your bill.


RIP New Good One

New Good One, a local Chinese-American food takeout joint on the corner of 24th Avenue and 29th Street, closed down a few months ago. I heard good things from a variety of Astorians about this place—well done for what it was—but no doubt it had its detractors. Over the past couple of years they got screwed by things they had no control over—most memorable was the time they were closed for weeks because of some electrical problem in the building.

They gained a bit of notoriety by being included in an Eater roundup of old-fashioned Chinese-American restaurants in NYC, written by lauded critic Robert Sietsema. But it wasn’t enough of a boost. The rent hike killed them. On Astorians, this was reported:

“As for New Good One, a few months back I caught one of the workers who looked like he was cleaning out some belongings and asked him why they closed. He told me the landlord doubled their rent and there was no way they would be able to make it, so they just had to close. Let’s see how long that space remains empty. I’m guessing a long time.”

Word on the street is that it might become a Mexican restaurant.


See You Soon, La Vita Mia

A couple blocks away on 24th Ave, locals wondered what was up with pizza joint La Vita Mia when it looked as if it had shuttered—was it closed for reals? Are they just renovating? Apparently it’s the latter, and they will re-open after their renovations to improve space both indoors and out, with customer retention in mind.

Reports of Competition for Pita Hot

We’ve been told about a new place called Sultan that is moving in on the same 30th Avenue block as beloved Astoria restaurant Pita Hot—which is a favorite spot among WHA staff. We’ll be curious to see if the two restaurants can coexist and be successful, or if one will be forced to close.

Another Taverna?

On the southeastern corner of 23rd Ave and Steinway a new restaurant called Brothers Taverna will open. And nearby Cafe 23 is open, too! It’s getting generally good reviews.


The location of Brothers Taverna on Steinway, several weeks ago.

Joe’s Garage Bar

We checked in with Joe Salvio a little while back about his new place, Joe’s Garage Bar, which he started working on in 2014. The space at 45-01 23rd Avenue was a soap factory way back when, and now it’s a nice looking bar, from what we can tell. He’ll be offering 16 taps; food details unknown. We hope to have more info soon, though. 


Photo credit: Adam L


A couple more things: They’re building a wall around the Steinway Mansion, and ISIS Hookah Bar on Steinway is getting bothered again by some politician who wants them to change their name.

Do you have any news about the neighborhood, or updates/corrections to this post? Be sure to send it our way—we want to hear from you!

About Meg Cotner

Meg Cotner was trained as a harpsichordist and now works as a freelance writer and editor. She is the author of "Food Lovers' Guide to Queens," and is a skilled and avid home cook, baker, and preserver.

One Comment


La Vita Mia was sold, new owners. New Good One was closed for a week that time by the health department. They had the dirtiest kitchen I’ve ever seen. Serious rodent (rats) and roach problems and the building wanted them gone because the rats were infesting everything. Good riddance.


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