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  • This Great Big Story was made possible by Wells Fargo, established 1852, re-established 2018.

  • (upbeat music)

  • Almost every nationality on the planet is represented in the neighborhoods of Queens, New York, which means the streets are lined with food from around the world.

  • And if there's one man who's tried them all, it's this guy.

  • Don't be fooled by his slight frame.

  • He spent the last 20 years unearthing every hidden gem this side of the East River.

  • We're here in downtown Flushing, and there's all sorts of things here including Soy Bean Chen Flower Shop, which is, of course, a florist.

  • But you might wonder why Soy Bean is in the name, and that's because they sell douhua, or fresh flower tofu, wonderful, warm, custardy tofu right out of this window.

  • I love this one. It's really...what a great breakfast.

  • (jazz music)

  • Hi, Joe.

  • (speaking in foreign language)

  • Cherry, my sister.

  • How are you?

  • It's good.

  • Pata Paplean specializes in Thai boat noodles and it's a really funky Thai bar with this crazy decor, and the owner's a trip.

  • Where did you learn how to make the boat noodles?

  • I used to cook with my mom when I was in Thailand before I moved to New York.

  • And then, no other place that make it in New York.

  • Aha.

  • - So it was out of necessity. - That's why I...

  • Yeah, that's why I try to make it in here.

  • (jazz music)

  • One of my favorite Tibetan restaurants, Lhasa Fast Food, is nestled in-between You and Me Wireless and Little Myanmar Mini Mart, one of the best places for Tibetan Beef Momos.

  • If you think you're lost on the way in, just look for the prayer flags.

  • (relaxing music)

  • What makes the Moma unique is the masala, or seasoning, that's in there.

  • So you find Sichuan peppercorn, ginger, celery, onion.

  • I like to think of them as the hamburgers of the Himalayas, and I mean that as a compliment.

  • (relaxing music)

  • The reason that places like this resonate with me is because they're not trying to make it the next it thing, the next Instagram food.

  • It's just like, "Hey, this is what we make back home. If you like it, too, come on in."

  • Queens has everything.

  • Go explore the neighborhood and find what's out there.

  • It's super easy, accessible, delicious, and people are a lot more welcoming and open than you might think.

This Great Big Story was made possible by Wells Fargo, established 1852, re-established 2018.

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Meet the Culinary King of Queens

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    Evangeline posted on 2018/08/12
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