This weekend, Flushing's World Fair is going down in Queens, a 3-day expo that aims to introduce New Yorkers (and tourists) to the area's businesses, cultural institutions, and historic landmarks. And if you take part, you'll get a Passport to Flushing you can get stamped throughout the weekend to unlock discounts—think of it as a coupon to some of the best spots in the neighborhood. Prior to this weekend's inaugural event, our photographer Sai Mokhtari took a little food tour with Joe DiStefano, author of 111 Places in Queens That You Must Not Miss, to test out some of the diverse offerings in the neighborhood.

“As someone who’s been exploring the culinary and cultural scene in Flushing for 20 years, I am honored to be spearheading the Passport to Flushing and helping dispel the myth that Flushing is some far away place,” DiStefano said. “The crown jewel of Queens is just half an hour away from Grand Central.”

Joe's Steam Rice Roll (Sai Mokhtari / Gothamist)

Click through for some highlights, including:

  • Joe's Steam Rice Roll: What sets Joe's apart is that they're the only place in NYC to grind their own rice, using a stone mill that Joe imported himself from Guangzhou, China.
  • New Asian Food: A generic name and interior for a very special place. Owner Sushma Thukral has a roti and paratha factory in the back of the store where they make breads for Indian markets all over the east coast. You can order these at the store along with your meal (we recommend the samosa chaat).
  • Dumpling Galaxy, the Pete Wells-approved spot owned by Helen You, serves up anything from sea bass dumplings to scallion pancakes to crystal sweet dumplings (a dessert dumpling with orange, tomato and 8 types of nuts inside a gelatin shell).
  • Kulu Desserts: Here you can get bubble tea, fresh fruit green teas, durian milk pudding (we're told it's mild), bubble waffles, and crepes.
  • Leaf Bar: This is inside the Hyatt, with a sweet view of Manhattan and a nice chill rooftop vibe.

New Asian Food owner Sushma Thukral and her son. (Sai Mokhtari / Gothamist)

And don't forget to do some exploring yourself—Flushing is a food destination, for sure.