>> Lincoln Avenue Deli | Eat the World NYC

22 August 2018

Lincoln Avenue Deli


In this city, when the words "hot food" are coupled with "seating available" on a deli awning, it is worth taking a look inside. Many times a steam table will look very tired and the place will be empty, but this is far from the case at the friendly Lincoln Avenue Deli just at the bottom of the 7 train stairs.

Before many of the streets and avenues in Queens were changed to a numerical system, they had regular names you see on streets throughout the country. The 7 train preserves some of these in its station names, but Lincoln Avenue is also remembered by this small deli, now a hub for working class Ecuadorians in the area. This format is common in Dominican and Mexican joints around the city, but less so for Ecuadorians who tend to have what usually constitutes a full restaurant.

At first glance the food component is not immediately apparent, but a few steps in rewards you with the small steam table and video menu above. This rotates comically fast, so a better option is to just take a look at what is available and ask questions as necessary. During lunch the food has a very high turnover rate and remains fresh, usually at least a couple beef and chicken options as well as fish. Each day of the week will have something new, and weekends seem to be good for foods that take a bit more preparation.

The standard size order here is $7 like the carne guisada shown above, heaped on a lot of rice and beans. They will ladle in a good portion of gravy without prompting, getting all that rice soaked with goodness.

Orders placed at the steam table to stay are taken to the back by the server, who efficiently cleans a table from a previous diner and places your food down at the place of his choice. During this visit one man lingered on his phone after eating, but for most it is a quick trip here to eat and run. The turnover was just as high in the seats as it was up front at the counter.

On a couple tables, a bottle of green spicy sauce comes out with the texture and color of a mint chutney, but the resemblance ends there. Use this with caution if you are sensitive to heat as it packs a serious kick.

Squeezing into this space with a group might be difficult, so come alone or as a pair and enjoy the atmosphere of a place that seems to have been running the same way for generations.

Lincoln Avenue Deli Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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