Best Spots for Al Fresco Dining in Forest Hills and Kew Gardens

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska on July 2, 2014 8:16am 

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 There are several patios and sidewalk cafes for locals to enjoy al fresco dining.
Best Places for Outdoor Dining in Forest Hills and Kew Gardens
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QUEENS — With summertime finally here, it's time to take advantage of the warm weather and have a meal or a drink outdoors.

Forest Hills and Kew Gardens may not have as many al fresco dining spots as Astoria, but the neighborhoods offer several options that are popular among locals.

Numerous eateries along Forest Hills' "Restaurant Row,” on 70th Road, between Austin Street and Queens Boulevard, provide outdoor seating, including Japanese restaurant Narita, Aged steakhouse and Cabana Nuevo Latino.

“That’s why we have our concerts there,” said Leslie Brown, president of the Forest Hills Chamber of Commerce, referring to the annual jazz concerts organized on the street every summer. “All those restaurants have outdoor dining and people can eat and hear the music at the same time.”

Greek Restaurant Agora Taverna, on Austin Street and 70th Avenue, also has several sidewalk tables that are very popular. “There is a nice Mediterranean feel to the place,” said resident Stephen Melnick.

Twist and Smash’d, known for its burgers and "twisted potatoes," opened a back patio last month, with several benches and rattan sofas.

Jade Eatery & Lounge, located in historic Station Square, near the Forest Hills Long Island Rail Road station, also provides several tables for patrons who like al fresco dining.

“If you want a nice setting, this place [dates] back to the beginning of [Forest Hills] Gardens,” Melnick said. The restaurant is new but the outdoor space is decades old.

My Kitchen on Metropolitan Avenue is opening its patio next week. Customers dining on the patio, which will be open from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. (on weekdays) will be able to enjoy tapas and salads, as well as sangria and wine specials, according to Dhanny Palma, one of the owners.

The nearby Theater Cafe, at Cinemart Cinemas on Metropolitan Avenue, is also a popular hangout, where locals go for coffee and deserts, with the option of eating pastas, sandwiches and salads. “It’s always busy," Brown said. "That’s a very nice and popular place.”

Several eateries along Metropolitan Avenue, further into Kew Gardens, also have sidewalk cafes, including the Turkish restaurant Roka, Spolini’s, an Italian eatery, and Tu Casa, a popular restaurant serving Spanish and Peruvian food.

Also in Kew Gardens, locals can find a tranquil spot next to the Kew Gardens LIRR train station, where Odradeks Coffee House offers several outdoor tables and Austin's Ale House has an outdoor patio which has recently been expanded. The patio can currently serve about 80 guests.

“It is an outdoor oasis like no other, and we are very proud and excited to provide this space for all to enjoy,” said Mark Boccia, one of the pub owners, in an email.

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