2018-07-25 / Restaurant of the Week

Igloo Café and Restaurant

There is no better complement to a beautiful summer day or antidote to a sweltering hot one than a quick jaunt over to the Igloo Café. It’s a cute restaurant with exposed brick walls, tile floors, comfortable booths, and a private patio out back that has a mural wall and umbrella-shaded tables and chairs. The menu offers an uncountable number of selections for meals, snacks, and desserts, including some great dinner entrées with an international flair. This is also the place to come for fresh squeezed fruit and vegetable juices, delicious smoothies, designer coffees, and the best ice cream sundaes in town.

The Igloo Café opens at 7:00 AM, so you can stop in for breakfast before work or your early-morning hike. Starting with the Coffee Bar, your choices range from 12 ounces of drip espresso or café latte ($1.75-$3.50) to such enticing creations as caramel macchiato, café white mocha, or amaretto fudge cappuccino ($3.50-$3.95). chai latte and various teas are also available. The breakfast menu is extensive and includes breakfast sandwiches that start at $2.95. Breakfast platters and 3 egg omelets come with toast and potatoes, pancakes, or grits ($6.25- $12.95). And buttermilk pancakes, Belgian waffles, and French toast range from between $7.95 and $12.95. You can have bagels, lox and cream cheese, or you can go light with a cup of oatmeal or cold cereal, a peanut butter sandwich, or a Greek yogurt parfait with berries and granola.

The lunch and dinner menus are equally as varied, offering you appetizers, homemade soups, sandwiches, burgers, paninis, quesadillas, pasta (served with soup or salad), quinoa bowls, entrée salads, wraps, Greek favorites, and dinner specials. A bowl of delicious homemade soup (chicken, beef, chicken chili, French Onion) costs between $5.95 and $7.95. There are over 20 different burger specials that include beef, turkey and veggie with toppings galore ($6.95- 11.95), and for an additional $1.00 you can have yours on a whole wheat bun or brioche. Pasta dishes are served with soup or salad and garlic bread and they range in price from $10.95 to $19.95 for the seafood combinations.

The dinner entrées or chef’s specialties are complete meals that include a soup or salad, potato or rice, and your choice of corn, spinach or broccoli. There are many dishes for you to choose from such as buttermilk crusted fried chicken ($13.95), Romanian steak ($27.95), and seared tuna (with sprouts, avocado, sliced almonds, cusabi dipping sauce, and sweet potato fries, $16.95). For my own dinner, I opted for the antibiotic-free chicken Francese ($16.95), which had a nice lemon and butter sauce, while my guest chose an American favorite, fresh carved roast turkey and stuffing ($16.95). Our meat was very tender and the fresh, garlic-seasoned spinach and fluffy mashed potato accompaniments were also very good.

The Igloo Café has an outstanding selection of desserts including some of my favorites like carrot cake, cheesecake and tiramisu ($5.95-$6.95), but nothing struck our fancy more than their list of tempting Sedutto ice cream sundaes. Look at these examples: the Malibu (chocolate chip mint, strawberry and raspberry truffle ice cream, topped with real whipped cream, walnuts, hot fudge, chocolate sprinkles, and a maraschino cherry; and the surprise (vanilla and dulce de leche ice cream, topped with real whipped cream, granola, hot fudge, caramel, oreo cookie bits, chocolate sprinkles and a maraschino cherry (both $8.95 and great to share.). We did have ice cream but just one scoop each with hot fudge sauce ($4.50), and it was rich, delicious and creamy, a perfect ending to a very nice dinner. We had spent a relaxing evening enjoying conversation and a great meal, thanks in part to our low-key waiter, Armando, who served without hovering and let us be. We appreciated that, Armando. You were perfect. Almost three hours had passed quickly, and it was time to leave, but we will come back again soon and hope you will, too.

These are the details to remember about the Igloo Café: It is located at 22-26 31st Street in Astoria near the last stop on the N train. It has an elaborate menu that includes some excellent Mediterranean and international dishes and irresistible ice cream treats. The Igloo Café is open seven days a week from 7:00 AM to 11:00 PM, and they also deliver. You can explore their menu at www.IglooCafe.com and call them at (718) 726-7700. The delivery option is important with the elevated subway service being disrupted. Igloo Café will deliver to your door the same delicious food available on site. Enjoy!

22-26 31st St., Astoria  718.726.7700

www.igloocafé.com

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