64-23 Broadway Woodside 718.779.6549
just to the west of the Broadway southbound exit off the BQE, right at the 65th Street R/V/G station exit.
open ? until 9pm daily.
Made my first visit to Jolina's, a relative new addition to the Woodside Filopino aggregate. I am not sure how long they have been open, but I feel like it has been less than a year, but they could have been open for 6 months or more. The ever alert E Eto mentioned it to me in passing when describing how to get to some other destination. Having seen the "$4.95 Lunch Buffet" sign he placed it low on his priority list of places to try. But walking past I noticed two things, they do whole roast pigs to order and that beyond the lunch buffet they have a menu that is comparable to Renee's Kitchenette & Grill (69-14 Roosevelt Ave) or Ihawan.
It is a small place, 10-12 tables maybe. In one visit, I could only begin to sample the fairly diverse menu. I asked them what was good today and the answer was BBQ Pork (which is grilled strips of pork in a stick, a standard at Ihawan and Rene's). While I considered that they might have thought that a safe recommendation to someone so anglo looking as I, I relaxed a bit when I heard the waitress recommend it to two Filipino men who came in just after I did. Along with my grilled pork, I ordered congee with pork cubes and fried bean curd (Lugaw at tokwat baboy) and then, to not make the evening be totally dedicated to pork, grilled eggplant.
The grilled pork was good. The congee had a thick fatty broth that was too heavy at first. Piling in the fried bean curd, chopped raw onion, and chunks of pork (which was what I was supposed to do) brought it onto balance and I ate it to the last drop and chunk. The grilled eggplant is a couple Asian/Japanese eggplants that have had their skins charred on the grill and then peeled off. It was served with chopped tomatos and onions and a purple salty sauce that much have it's origins in the sea. The eggplant has been cooked just until barely fork tender. No oil. It is almost like a salad needing the sauce and/or vinegar.
I forgot to ask about garlic rice but now see that they list it as part of their breakfast menu. They don't have the longaniza [sp?] sausage that is so popular with visitors to Ihawan, but they do have grilled squid which is on my list to try next.
The place was been packed when I passed by a couple weekends ago during the day and there were lots of people going for their buffet. Anyone else tried them yet?