One of the great added benefits of dating someone in a new neighborhood is trying all the restaurants there. I already posted about balkh shish kebab(and I go back for the firny, a milk pudding, all the time) and have now had two more in Astoria there, one good, one bad.
First, thanks to everyone for suggesting Kebab Cafe. This is a little piece of heaven on earth. The place is so comfortable and Ali is a wonderful host. The food is delicious as well. Great mixed appetizer plate with hummus, baba, foul, felafel and escarole. Then a plate of 48 hour braised vel cheeks. Rich, unctuous, hearty. Perfect for winter.
Second, had a less then memorable meal at Amice Amore and would never go back. I had the Black linguine with shrimp. The linguine was way overcooked, the shrimp only ok, and the supposedly spicy soft was too sweet and had no heat. My GFs orrechiette with broccoli rabe and sausage was at least not over cooked, but the sausage had absolutely no taste. Someone please tell me Piccolo Venezia is better or else I will have to give up trying to find Italian in the neighborhood.
On a final note, their are two great little stores on 23rd Ave btwn 29th and 31st st. One is a greek supermarket with delicious greek pastries (and they sell the yogurt place's yogurt). The second is a coffe shop that sells really good spinach pie.
Any more Astoria recs are apreciated (beyond the above and the thai places).