Indian Restaurant Debuts in Forest Hills, 16 Handles Headed to Astoria

By Nick Hirshon on January 17, 2012 12:39pm 

OPENINGS:

An Indian restaurant named Haveli (Indian for "palace") opened at 116-33 Queens Blvd. in Forest Hills, creating an instant rivalry with the established Baluchi’s just a short walk away. Like Baluchi’s, Haveli offers both eat-in and takeout food. Intriguing dishes include the gosht pasanda, a grilled lamb fillet stuffed with apricot and simmered in an aromatic sauce, which sells for $15.

Baby Steps Day Care has set up shop at 99-06 Metropolitan Ave., next to a Chase bank in Forest Hills. It is now enrolling children ages 2 to 6. Open houses will occur on Jan. 21, Feb. 4-5 and Feb. 11-12.

The Dog & Duck eatery at 45-20 Skillman Ave. in Sunnyside has garnered rave reviews on websites such as Yelp since debuting in October. Replacing Bliss Bistro, the Dog & Duck identifies itself as a "gastropub." Co-owner Padraigh Connolly told the Sunnyside Post that it’s an “English/Irish pub with food a little bit beyond a Shepherd’s pie.”

ON THE HORIZON:

Feel the chill in Queens? The frozen yogurt shop 16 Handles will soon come to 37-07 30th Avenue in Astoria and the Queens Center mall in Elmhurst. The popular chain, which already has numerous locations in Manhattan and Long Island, boasts flavors ranging from angel food cake to chocolate eruption to green tea tart.

Citibank is moving into a 2600-square-foot space at 78-09 Metropolitan Ave., formerly home to the Middle Village Credit Union. Previously, the closest Citibank was more than a mile away on 63rd Road in Rego Park.

J.R.’s Diner hopes to succeed where Esparks Coffee failed in Glendale. The eatery, whose logo is a steaming cup of coffee, plans to open at the corner of Cooper and Metropolitan Aves., where Esparks shuttered its flagship store last year.

CLOSINGS:

Queens opened 2012 without some of the borough’s favorite hangouts, including the Palace Diner in Flushing. A longtime mainstay at 60-15 Main St., the diner had become a local landmark that lured Queens College students and drivers heading to or from the Long Island Expressway. Its façade billed seafood and cocktails, and it was also known for Greek food.

The controversial Metro Puppy store at 103-23 Metropolitan Ave. in Forest Hills closed its doors for good late last year. The Daily News reported in May 2010 that a Glendale woman accused the shop of giving away her lost French bulldog pup.

A sign for J.R.'s Diner, set to open at Cooper and Metropolitan Aves. in Glendale, shows a steaming cup of coffee.
A sign for J.R.'s Diner, set to open at Cooper and Metropolitan Aves. in Glendale, shows a steaming cup of coffee.
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DNAinfo/Nick Hirshon

For more Openings & Closings news, check out DNAinfo's regular Openings & Closings columns for New York City neighborhoods.

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