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New Gourmet Store Brings Flavor of Istanbul to Jackson Heights

By Smriti Rao | June 19, 2012 4:54pm
77th Street welcomes new gourmet store featuring Greek and Turkish specialty foods.
77th Street welcomes new gourmet store featuring Greek and Turkish specialty foods.
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DNAinfo/Smriti Rao

JACKSON HEIGHTS — In the mood for some stuffed grape leaves or a strong cup of Turkish coffee?

Shoppers in Jackson Heights won't have to trek all the way to Astoria to get their weekly fix of Greek and Turkish delights anymore — the area's first gourmet store featuring food from the Mediterranean region opened there recently.

After being dominated for years by South Asian specialty food shops, the neighborhood said Merhaba to gourmet store Lemon Farm, which stocks cheeses, fresh organic produce and pasta, along with Turkish treats like Ayran, a yogurt-based drink, management said.

The manager of the shop at 77th Street and 37th Avenue, Mustafa Ozer, 26, originally from Turkey, said the owners were looking to set up a store similar to the Amish Markets in Manhattan, which would provide shoppers something unique to taste and try.

“A lot of the stuff is different from what you would find here [in this neighborhood],” said Ozer. “People have been excited to shop.”

Residents like Maura King, 38, were happy to welcome the store to the neighborhood.

“There are too many dime stores, drug stores, nail salons here,” she said, adding she would love for more quality shops like local café Espresso 77 and Starbucks to open in the neighborhood.

“We could also do with a really good burger place,” she laughed.