Restaurant weeks have become the de facto marketing tactic for neighborhoods trying to increase their foot traffic, and while it's not the sexiest of events it's certainly the most cost-effective way to get a feel for a new neighborhood. Despite its status as the most ethnically diverse of our boroughs, Queens gets a bit of a raw deal when it comes to attracting outsiders, especially since Brooklyn's overpowering ego outshines even Manhattan these days. But two Queens neighborhoods are hoping that some killer deals on lunch and dinner will bring in a few curious eaters while also serving up great options to locals looking to save a few bucks.
The charming enclave of Sunnyside hosts a restaurant week from November 4th through November 8th, with deals on dinner from Turkish, Irish, Thai, Nepalese and other ethnic restaurants for just $25. Choose from a huge menu of Turkish treats at Turkish Grill, including creamy babaganush, doner kebab (ground lamb) or falafel. Some restaurants offer $10 lunch deals, like Ariba Ariba, where you can choose from Mexican standbys like tacos, burritos and flautas and enjoy two complimentary drinks (sangria, frozen margaritas, wine or soda) with your meal. Check out all 17 participating restaurants and be sure to also look for art work by No Longer Empty, who've set up installations at a few of the area eateries.
Forest Hills' growing culinary scene includes an abundance of homey, casual eateries that focus on upscale comfort food in addition to old-school Italian joints and fusion restaurants. From November 3rd through November 9th, take the journey by subway or LIRR to this nabe for $15 prix fixe lunches and $24/$25 prix fixe dinners at one of 10 participating restaurants. Grab a weekday dinner of Baked Guiness Mac & Cheese, Fish and Chips or Filet of Pork at Irish gastropub Banter, Italian specialties from Porofino or hearty German fare from Manor Oktoberfest. If you want a truly gut-busting meal to fortify you for the journey home, head to newcomer Station House, who in addition to serving up decadent delights like fried Snickers and Poutine, also boast a killer craft beer list with brews like Yonkers Stout Nitro and Allagash Tripel on draft.