How Small, Immigrant-Owned Taquerias Are Weathering the Lime Shortage

Categories: ¡Oye! Comida

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Scarlett Lindeman
A multitude of factors have converged to contribute to the drastic lime shortage in the United States this month. Thanks to citrus blight, erratic weather, and inner-state narco politics in Mexico, the price of the little green citrus fruits has skyrocketed, prompting the public to reconsider the ubiquity of an everyday commodity. What is a bowl of pho, a gin and tonic, or a taco without a squeeze of lime?

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Find a Verdant Quesadilla Among the Wares at Mexico 2000

Categories: ¡Oye! Comida

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Scarlett Lindeman
It's hard to find fault with Mexico 2000 (367A Broadway, Brooklyn, 718-782-3797), the Mexican grocery stalwart on the South side of Williamsburg in the shadow of the J/M/Z line. With a cornucopia of Mexican produce and spices, canned goods, beer, baked goods, lottery tickets, shampoo, and toilet paper, plus a taqueria in the back, this place packs in more stuff per square inch than any bodega in the city. A packed elevator is roomier.

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Where to Find Great Guacamole

Categories: ¡Oye! Comida

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Scarlett Lindeman
It is sometimes said that a good cheesemonger can tell, to the hour, when a wheel of camembert should be eaten. An expert's deep understanding of ripening agents, bloomy rinds, and complex environmental conditions allows him or her to zero in on a cheese's zenith, so you can schedule your dinner party around a wedge of Roquefort or a Lazy Lady goat and ensure optimal eating.

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At South Slope's Country Boys, a Rare Southern Mexican Treat

Categories: ¡Oye! Comida

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All photos by Scarlett Lindeman
Two round orbs hover in a pool the color of rust, steam rising, seeds from ground dried peppers clinging to their surfaces. At first bite, a rush of the sea laps against earth, layers of toasted chile, garlic, and clove. This is torta de camaron, which sounds like a shrimp sandwich but is actually an uncommon fritter from Southern Mexico. It's made from dried shrimp soaked in water, which is blitzed with fava bean, onion, and egg, and then formed into patties and fried in shallow oil.

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Find a Secret Breakfast Burrito Cache at Stan's Cafecito

Categories: ¡Oye! Comida

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All photos by Scarlett Lindeman
Last summer, Williamsburg climbed up the city's totem pole of burritos when Stan's Cafecito (172 Havemeyer Street, 646-626-9175) quietly opened its doors and became the neighborhood's secret cache for tortilla-wrapped breakfasts. Tucked into a tiny alcove between South 2nd and South 3rd, the space initially held just a ramshackle plywood counter, a small fridge, and a griddle, and there was barely enough room to stand and place an order. The cafe recently expanded into the former copy shop next door to include a couple of tables and chairs and a shelf heavy with hot sauce. There are also three stools out on the street.

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On an Ever-Changing Strip of Real Estate, the Nachos at Taqueria Diana Have Staying Power

Categories: ¡Oye! Comida

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Scarlett Lindeman
No street seems shift as constantly at St. Marks Place in the East Village. If you keep up with the revolving door of real estate that is the stretch between Cooper Square and Avenue A, you seen the evolution of ramen shops, slice joints, and automats. If you don't stroll down the street for a few weeks, you may be dumbfounded when you find that your favorite bahn mi place has been replaced by a frozen yogurt emporium, or that the okonomi hot dog you were aiming to try left for warmer waters uptown.

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Rockaway Taco Brings a Blip of Summer to Williamsburg

Categories: ¡Oye! Comida

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All photos by Scarlett Lindeman
The South Side Supper Club recently hosted Rockaway Taco, marshalling a bright blip of summer before the snow cloaked the city yet again. The supper club is held at Nha Toi (160 Havemeyer Street, Brooklyn), a Vietnamese restaurant in Williamsburg that once served bowls of pho until it shuttered last August. Fred Hua, the owner, chef, and sole waiter of Nha Toi, said that the problem was, "My landlords! They tore a big hole in my wall. I had to get out." He is currently looking for a new spot and reimagining a Vietnamese menu.

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At the Tiny Ines Bakery, Baked Goods and Stand-Out Tortas

Categories: ¡Oye! Comida

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All photos by Scarlett Lindeman
Despite its diminutive size, Ines Bakery (948 Fourth Avenue, Brooklyn, 718-788-0594), a Mexican outpost near Greenwood cemetery, packs it in. On weekdays, when offices are shutting down and schools have run their last bells, the triangular standing room of the bakery fills up as tightly as the glass pastry cases slotted with sheet cakes, empanadas, and elephant ears. There are teenagers begging their friends for two more quarters so they can upgrade their doughnut orders, older gentlemen picking up thickly frosted white cakes to go, and families tearing apart pupusas steaming from the griddle. But most of those clogging the space are holding out for tortas made on fluffy telera rolls, baked in house.

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El Toro Blanco: A Proustian Ride Through the Taco Bell Drive-Thru

Categories: ¡Oye! Comida

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Scarlett Lindeman
El Toro Blanco (257 Avenue of the Americas, 212-645-0193), a swank Mexican cantina from the owners of Lure Fishbar and Burger & Barrel, opened in the fall of last year on a prosaic stretch of Sixth Avenue. Dressed in orange, black, and red with leather banquettes and ochre wooden beams, it channels a certain 1960s California zeitgeist. Even the poster of chilies in the bathroom are like something your great aunt from Carmel hung in her kitchen for decades.

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Find Super Rare Tlales at Reyes Deli & Grocery

Categories: ¡Oye! Comida

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Lindeman
Tlales, also known as chales, talitos, or biuses, are the dregs of the chicharron pot. They are occasionally sold in a commercial context by professional chicharron producers, but even still, these pork crumbles are exceptionally rare, even for Mexican-centric cities like Los Angeles.

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