2013-01-09 / Restaurant of the Week


By Teresa Barile

Nothing says New York like the classic diner and the Court Square Diner in Long Island City fits the bill with a modern twist. Since 1946 this classic diner has fed Queens’ hungry throngs 24 hours a day, seven days a week. With home-style food, baking done on premises, and an array of daily dinner and lunch specials, the Court Square Diner is your place for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It couldn’t be more convenient to reach, just downstairs from the Court Square Station of the 7 train and near the E, M and G lines. The amiable owners, Steve and Nick Kanellos, took over in 1991 and work tirelessly to maintain high quality in every dish they make. Even after extensive renovations, Court Square retains the classic retro diner look that is uniquely American. Best of all, the food is always fresh and the friendly staff greets you with a smile and offers efficient service. Start your day off right with breakfast at Court Square Diner, where the eggs are whisked up into delicious omelets filled with spinach and feta cheese, ham, cheese and peppers and more. Order an egg sandwich to go or a toasted muffin or bagel with butter and you’ll be on your way in minutes with a cup of freshly brewed coffee in hand. Pancakes, French toast and Belgian waffles are available seven days a week, but there is an extra special brunch served on Saturdays and Sundays from 9am to 3pm.

Stop in for lunch or have your order delivered to your office. Give them your fax number and you’ll receive the daily specials and soups of the day. Enjoy their triple decker sandwiches with roasted turkey, chicken salad, roast beef and Swiss and more. Many of your favorite items can be piled into a delicious wrap, such as the chicken Caesar wrap with lettuce, tomato, Romaine lettuce and classic Caesar dressing. Hot open roast beef or sliced turkey sandwiches smothered in homemade gravy will keep you going until dinner. The classic Reuben is piled with lean corned beef, sauerkraut and melted Swiss cheese. How does a souvlaki sandwich sound, piled on with lettuce, tomato, onion and yogurt sauce? You can order souvlaki and gyro as a platter also, or try a juicy eight ounce burger topped with your favorite cheese. Crunchy salads such as the Caesar, Cobb, Greek or spinach salad can make a great lunch or dinner, especially when topped off with grilled chicken, shrimp, salmon or steak.

Come for dinner and enjoy a cocktail from the fully stocked bar, or a nice glass of wine. House made, hearty soups include lentil, chicken farfallini, French onion and more. Start with some of their generously sized appetizers such as the quesadilla filled with jack cheese and chicken served with house made guacamole, salsa and sour cream ($9.95). Fried calamari are golden and crisp, served with marinara sauce. Both adults and kids love the mozzarella sticks and chicken fingers with dipping sauce. Stuffed mushrooms and baked stuffed clams are also excellent choices.

There are dinner specials every night of the week, so you can always find something different. Pasta Contadina is topped with sweet and hot sausage, zucchini, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, garlic and oil. Pork chops Bonaparte come with sautéed red and green peppers, potato, vegetable and soup or salad for an economical $14.45. Steak and shrimp Louisiana style is nicely spiced and served with Creole rice. Stuffed peppers make a nice meal, served here with whipped potatoes.

From the regular menu you’ll find classic diner comfort food such as meatloaf and mashed potatoes, roast turkey dinner with stuffing and gravy, Virginia ham, and roast beef au jus. Sautee specials include chicken piccata with fresh mushrooms, capers and lemon white wine sauce. Shrimp a la Court takes jumbo shrimp sautéed with tomato, garlic and feta cheese over linguine ($15.45). Fillet of sole can be broiled straight up, or stuffed with savory crabmeat and bread crumbs, or fried until golden and crisp. The evening’s special salmon was topped with tomatoes and olives in a light sauce that was both healthy and delicious.

No one can resist the Court Square Diner’s fabulous desserts, and why should you? That beautiful hunk of New York style cheesecake makes life worth living, with or without strawberries on top. House made baklava, warm apple pie with ice cream or seven layer chocolate cake are all tempting. I love rice pudding and chocolate pudding too, or you can have an ice cream sundae with the works on it. The coffee is robust and is brewed fresh all day long. Court Square Diner is located down the street from MoMa PS 1 and is a great place to go either before or after a day of visiting the museum’s exhibitions. Stop in on your way to or from work and enjoy a great breakfast, lunch or dinner, nightly specials, a full bar, fast, friendly service, and weekend brunch. The Court Square Diner is a classic New York diner with a modern attitude open 24 / 7, just like the Big Apple itself.

45-30 23rd Street, Long Island City
718. 392. 1222


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