Smorgasburg and similar markets have helped launch the careers of many budding restaurants, the latest of which is Cemitas El Tigre, the offshoot of the Cemitas stand that's been operating at the Brooklyn market since 2012. The overstuffed Mexican sandwiches—along with an expanded menu—made their debut in Sunnyside, Queens yesterday with a brick-and-mortar on 48th Avenue. "It has taken years to find the perfect location for this restaurant, but as an American born in Korea with an almost religious devotion to Mexican food, I couldn’t be happier opening in Sunnyside, where seven distinct cultural communities share 53 acres," owner Danny Lyu enthused.
This'll be the first permanent operation of the shop, which also ran a pop-up inside the Whole Foods in Gowanus. On the menu: layered cemitas sandwiches filled with traditional carnitas ($9), chicken tinga ($9) and barbacoa ($10), plus Lyu's special Southern Fried Chicken ($9) and Sr. LaFrieda Burger ($10) varieties. All the sandwiches come with a fistful of Oaxaca cheese, avocado, pickled onions, chipotle, mayo, lettuce, tomato, black bean puree and papalo, an herbaceous Mexican herb.
The expanded menu include burrito and taco versions of the aforementioned fillings, plus a vegetarian Garlic Portobello Mushroom that can be substituted instead of any of the meats. To wash them down, Mexican sodas plus milkshakes in dark chocolate, vanilla bean and strawberry flavors. On the harder side, bottles of Corona, Negro Modelo and Firestone Union Jack IPA and pints of Sixpoint Crisp Lager, Allagash White and bells Amber.
45-14 48th Avenue, Sunnyside, (929) 296-3946; website