Uncle Peter’s Continental Cuisine Offers Fine Dining
Behind an unassuming façade on Northern Boulevard in Jackson Heights, Uncle Peter’s Continental Cuisine serves wonderful meals to suit all tastes and appetites. The Medina family, led by Ernesto Medina, has owned Uncle Peter’s since 1983 when the restaurant was located on Roosevelt Avenue. In its new home, Uncle Peter’s updated kitchen, expertly run by chef Semmar and sous-chef Augusto, serves up the freshest fish, seafood, pasta and hearty meat dishes, prepared to order using the finest ingredients, seven days a week.
The Medina family came from Argentina, a country famous for premiere wines which are prominently featured on the menu. Reasonably priced, these fine wines rival many European vintages and enhance every meal.
You’ll be impressed by the cozy interior as well as beautifully prepared and presented dinners. Wood floors, aged brick and linen covered tablecloths are just some of the details. Copper pots and utensils adorn the cream-colored walls, accented by soft lighting. Couples, friends and families will all feel comfortable here, especially as they’ll be lavished with personal attention from the staff.
We left our ordering up to Enrique Medina, who explained the house specials in great detail. We started with appetizers of langoustines, petite lobsters grilled and served with plump, grilled scallops. He then brought roasted eggplant, topped with a round of baked till bubbly goat cheese ($7.95). Paper-thin slices of Serrano ham and Manchego cheese, both imported from Spain, along with warm, crusty bread and herb-infused olive oil made by Ernesto himself also made a great starter. Plump shrimp in a heavenly garlic sauce and the chef’s crab cakes are also excellent choices. Next on the menu are fresh salads tossed with arugula, radicchio and endive and bursting with flavor.
One of the best ways to sample the fine food at Uncle Peter’s is to take advantage of their Sunset Dinner, served Monday through Friday from 4 to 6:45 p.m., Saturdays from 4 to 6 p.m. and Sundays from 1 to 5 p.m. The Sunset Dinner costs just $18.95 and includes a glass of wine, choice of appetizer, entrée, dessert and coffee, and there are 18 entrees to choose from. Grilled Cornish hen comes right off the bone and is dressed with a balsamic reduction. Medallions of chicken rolled into spirals filled with vegetables and mozzarella are served with pasta. Pork loin is finished with woodsy mushrooms and Marsala wine sauce. Atlantic salmon is prepared any way you like, besides which there’s always seafood of the day. No wonder families come together to celebrate birthdays and anniversaries at Uncle Peter’s and sample the wonders of the kitchen at this very economical price.
Besides the Sunset Dinner, the regular menu has even more tempting offerings, such as roasted baby rack of lamb finished in a rosemary and white wine sauce. I can attest to the tenderness and flavor of these delicate little chops. Tender veal scaloppini is creatively prepared, either with shrimp and grain mustard sauce or in a sauce with Portobello, morel and porcini mushrooms to top it off. Tender, juicy sirloin steak is cooked to order and finished Argentinean style, with a parsley and garlic sauce called chimichurri. Steak au poivre is prepared in the French manner with brandy, black peppercorns and a touch of cream ($19.95).
There is a variety of pasta dishes to choose among, with kudos to the rigatoni della casa. Al dente rigatoni is combined with tender zucchini, eggplant and plum tomatoes, then topped with a sprinkling of freshly grated parmigiano. You can also top rigatoni with tender chunks of chicken, fresh broccoli, garlic and oil ($14.95). Fettuccine gamberi bianco is topped with plump shrimp in a champagne cream sauce. I’ll have to go back for the saffron-infused risotto with seafood.
The desserts are just as impressive as the dinners at Uncle Peter’s. Indulge in bananas flambé with rich chocolate sauce, or creamy flan with dulce de leche. The chef makes a pear strudel that is out of this world, and serves it with his own homemade vanilla ice cream. Rich chocolate cake and pecan tart will satisfy the sweetest of sweet tooths, or choose a light and fruity sorbet to cleanse your palate. The coffee, bought from a specialty distributor, is top notch.
Uncle Peter’s has a great lunch menu with homemade soup of the day, fresh salads, sandwiches, pasta, chicken, fish and more, from $6.95 to $12.95.
Uncle Peter’s Continental Cuisine is open seven days a week, serving lunch and dinner Monday through Friday, and dinner only on the weekends.
Visit Uncle Peter’s Continental Cuisine for fine food in a comfortable atmosphere. The Sunset Menu can’t be beat and the service is excellent. The Medina Family goes out of their way to make you feel very much at home, which makes your meal even more special. Catering can be arranged for any size party and your guests will surely be impressed with the quality and presentation of the food.
83-15 Northern Blvd.