Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Astor Bake Shop

Yes, I admit it, going in we wanted this place to be sincere. It is, after all, around the corner from our house, and it's the only thing like it in the entire neighborhood. Georgina, it must be said, had already gone in with a friend of hers a day or so before, and was already over-the-top about the place. Let me put it this way, she was bringing along a fresh tomato from our garden for the owner. Does that tell you anything? I insisted that the tomato not be given until after we had eaten lunch and paid, so that there would be no undue service or sincerity given in thanks for such a valuable gift. Given all that, I went in with a show-me attitude, and I can only say at this point that I was indeed shown.

There was one very friendly guy behind the counter (which sported in-house baked goods that continuously called out to me in siren voices throughout our lunch). I had coffee, which was very good, and we both opted for the "Slow Baked Chicken Sandwich." It was a good thing that we both ordered that, otherwise there might have been an altercation of epic proportions over who was going to eat it. Fantastic is the only adjective that comes to mind when describing that sandwich...juicy, smokey slabs of chicken, caramelized onions, avocado and Swiss cheese, on hot, house-baked Portuguese rolls...God almighty. The owner, George, came by to say hello to Georgina, (he remembered her from the other day) and to introduce himself to me. He's very easy going, and immediately made me feel welcome. The decor is beautiful, simple and clean. Bottom line on this one is that no matter where you live, a journey to the Astor Bake Shop is a must. Oh, and did I mention that Chicken Sandwich?

(One more thing about the cakes etc. in the display counter - if only there were one or two things that were sweetened with unrefined sugar or fruit juice, Georgina and I would be at this very moment slapping on a couple of pounds and feeling inspired to head off to the park to work them off. Just sayin'...)

Evaluation: Extraordinarily sincere


12-23 Astoria Blvd
On one corner of the 5 point intersection
joining 14th St, 28th  and Astoria Blvd
Astoria, NY 11102
Phone 718.606.8439
Fax 718.679.9360

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