Astoria, NY 11102
New Yorkers are pretty damn lucky. We can get pretty much any kind of food at any hour of the day or night. The range of drinking options are endless—from elegant cocktails to hard-to-find craft beers to cans of PBR. Our dogs make friends just about every time we step out the door. And we can take them with us as we eat, drink, and be merry at just about any joint that has sidewalk seating. The northwestern Queens enclave of Astoria is no exception.
You won’t find signs saying “dogs allowed” at Oliver’s Astoria, the corner bar and eatery a block away from bustling Steinway Street. But on a beautiful Sunday morning or breezy Taco Tuesday, you’re sure to find friends for Fido sitting patiently at their owners’ feet. You might accidentally end up here when the wait for Kickshaw down the block is too long, as we did many moons ago, but you’ll be glad you did when you spot the chicken and waffles on both the brunch and dinner menus. (Besides, that dish you loved at Kickshaw is gone now anyway.)
Sure, chicken and waffles are everywhere now, but the ones at Oliver’s are among the best in the ‘hood. The chefs smartly use a sweet, yeasty, crunchy liege waffle as a base to the tower of perfectly seasoned, crispy chicken and fried egg, and bridge the sweet and salty with peppery arugula and kicky sriracha honey. To say we’re in love would be an understatement.
Vegetarian? Go for The Herbivore: a giant pile of cheesy grits, eggs, veggies, potatoes, and red-eye gravy. It’s the perfect pick-me-up after a good, long run—or a night of drinks—along with a solid cup of coffee.
Dinner is another twist on the ordinary. We have a thing for fried chicken, obviously, because their buttermilk fried chicken sandwich with vinegar slaw and sriracha ranch is a cut above. Try it with some avocado. The Southwest Cobb hits the spot on a hot night, and the Astoria Burger is made with beef from the butcher shop right around the corner. It doesn’t get more local than that.
But you’re not just going for the food, are you? Oliver’s stands out as one of the better bars for craft beers, with over 50 bottles, cans, and drafts available at any one time, including some damn fine brews from the ever-expanding and improving local Astoria and LIC brewery scene.
Your dog may just be getting a bit of water while he sits with you, but he’ll be happy to see you enjoying yourself and taking him back home with a satisfied belly and a bit of a buzz.