>> Pakiza | Eat the World NYC

06 August 2020



[COVID-19 UPDATE: The few tables inside have been removed for now, but the steam table operates daily as it always has, and takeout is as fresh as ever.]

For a good chunk of the city's restaurants, the pandemic has hit them with a vigor that appears unlikely to subside anytime soon. Most that want to forge the path forward have adapted as best they can, building outdoor seating areas and more robust delivery systems.

On a recent hot day, kulfi served as immediate relief.

But then there are also certain sectors that seem almost unaffected, besides the annoyances everyone faces to be outside their own home. The steam table joints up and down this section of Coney Island Avenue still have all of their spots full of freshly prepared meals that both the neighborhood and working taxi drivers pop in quickly for throughout the day and night.

If you arrive by car to a place like Lahori Chilli or Pakiza, yellow and green will occupy most spaces out front, and many onto each of the side streets closest. Certainly there are bottom lines that are not seen when something like this is said, but frankly it is a brief glimmer of hope to witness business still going ok for some.

At Pakiza, most of the steam table offerings are available in two sizes, a small for $6 and a large for $12. A recent visit was able to procure large portions of haleem and biriyani and a small lamb curry, annotated in the photo below. Most orders will also throw in a container of lettuce and onions as well as a good portion of raita, a yogurt-based condiment full of cucumber, mint, and coriander.

The lamb curry ($6, small portion) is definitely worthy of a large order, which has already been noted for next time. Grab some naan ($1.50 each) for use with their also excellent haleem ($12, large order), a spicier than usual version of the barley, lentil, and shredded chicken stew. The workaday biriyani ($12, large portion) satisfied just fine, but of the three it could have been the one ordered in a smaller quantity.


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