Thursday, January 14, 2010
Find your reward at Spicy & Tasty
If you have to go through the ordeal of driving someone to John F. Kennedy International Airport -- incredibly congested roads, bumper-to-bumper traffic, aggressive truck drivers -- you can reward yourself on the way home with a visit to Spicy & Tasty, a Szechuan restaurant in the Flushing section of Queens.
That's what I did today after dropping my wife at the airport, which seemed to be slumbering, at least from my curbside view in front of the terminal. But I arrived a half-hour before the restaurant's noon opening, and had to visit an ATM machine in the hotel around the corner (Spicy & Tasty doesn't take credit card).
When you arrive in Flushing, you're immediately transported to Hong Kong -- another great place to eat -- by the Chinese lettering on the buildings, the bustling streets and the many Asians on foot and in cars.
I was there for takeout, something for lunch and dinner at home. I ordered one of the cold appetizers displayed in a glass case at the front of the restaurant: shredded bamboo in chili oil ($6.50). My entrees were bean curd with spicy minced pork ($7.95) and fish fillet in fresh hot pepper ($14.95), which is made with cabbage, and I also asked for broccoli with fresh garlic (also $7.95) after I was told the kitchen didn't have Chinese watercress.
The drive home was trouble-free, and I put some of the still-warm white rice in a bowl and topped it with the hot, cubed tofu, which was swimming in a reddish sauce. This is one restaurant that heeds your request for "very spicy." I ate the bean curd and rice with a spoon and found it comforting. It made my lips tingle.
Spicy & Tasty, 39-07 Prince Street (1H), Flushing, New York;
718-359-1601; open seven days, cash only.
Municipal parking lot is at Prince and 39th streets.