Summer Bites and Miniature Golf, Too

The Mets are winning again, the Botanical Garden is opening its farmers' market, and the piranhas are biting at the Hall of Science (did you know you could play miniature golf there, too?). In short, it's shaping up as a full, fun summer around Flushing Meadows Corona Park. And as janie reminds us, no one has to go hungry there.

Just a block from the park, Empanadas Café (formerly Empanadas del Parque) is in top form. On a recent visit janie and two helpers put away a spread of fantastic empanadas with great, fresh fillings: plantain and cheese, spinach and ricotta, sausage and potato, shredded chicken, pesto mozzarella; "we kept eating and eating—love the hot sauce, too."

Next was dessert at Timmy O's, the hound-endorsed frozen custard shop a few blocks away. Vanilla frozen custard (with rainbow sprinkles) and a vanilla shake were pretty much perfect. "This place is just a gem," janie declares—and, owing to its out-of-the-way location, unjustly underpatronized. "I'm worried about their survival there," she adds. "Please go if you haven't been."

Finally, she stuck her head in at Tortilleria Nixtamal, a hound hangout for tamales and other masa treats, and spotted some additions to the menu, including a vegetable taco.

"All of these places are destination spots, not just neighborhood places," janie says. "If you're coming to Flushing Meadow park, or the science museum, or a Mets game, check these places out if you have never been, or return to them if you've neglected them. They are all just great."

Empanadas Café [Corona]
56-27 Van Doren Street (at 108th Street), Corona, Queens
718-592-7288

Timmy O's [Corona]
49-07 104th Street (at 49th Avenue), Corona, Queens
516-242-1843

Tortilleria Nixtamal [Corona]
104-05 47th Avenue (at 104th Street), Corona, Queens
718-699-2434

Discuss: Perfect day in Corona, Queens...

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