Soul Food Lands In Queens
A Plate of Soul
110-46 Merrick Blvd., Jamaica
HOURS: Tues-Thurs. 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., Fri-Sun 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
DELIVERY: Take out only
CREDIT CARDS: Visa and Mastercard
Finding good soul food in Queens can be a challenge. Unless you have a relative from the South, your best option is to make the trek to Harlem to visit Sylvia’s. Luckily, Sylvia’s grandson was kind enough to bring down-home cooking to the borough.
James Nico Holman opened A Plate of Soul on Merrick Boulevard three months ago, and it has already made a splash in South Queens. During the lunch hour on a Tuesday, there was a steady flow of customers coming in to take advantage of A Plate of Soul’s great specials. The restaurant offers a filling fish sandwich for just $2.
Unlike many dining options in the neighborhood, A Plate of Soul’s modern décor and comfortable seating make it a welcoming place to relax and enjoy a meal. That’s exactly what my guest and I did. I was joined by Kevin Livingston, creator of the “100 Suits for 100 Men” program. We discussed Queens politics while perusing the menu.
The menu featured traditional soul food, including collard greens, mac and cheese and sweet potato pie. Kevin and I decided to try the fish and chips. For just $6, the price cannot be beat. Instead of being dipped in cornstarch like traditional fish and chips, A Plate of Soul dips their fish in cornmeal for a lighter, delicious option. After one bite, I realized Sylvia taught her grandson right. The fish was crispy and seasoned perfectly.
Our lunch was topped off with a bowl of mac and cheese. Before my trip to Merrick Boulevard, I was convinced I could only get a delicious bowl of mac and cheese in my mother’s kitchen upstate. I was pleasantly surprised that I could get an equally tasty bowl of the gooey side dish in Queens. Each forkful dangled with strings of cheese and I resisted the urge to ask for a second helping after I scraped the bowl clean in just a few minutes.
Unlike some places, A Plate of Soul serves right sized portions for people watching their waistlines. Beginning this week, the restaurant will serve their summer menu, which includes wraps, salads, soups and sandwiches. The eatery will soon begin serving a Vegan menu as well. Holman said the restaurant only uses organic Kosher products to ensure the quality of the food served. For those of you looking for lighter options in South Queens, A Plate of Soul is definitely worth a visit.