Good Food, Good Company
Boca Juniors Argentinean Steakhouse
81-08 Queens Blvd, Elmhurst 11373
Hours: Open 7 Days 12 Noon- 12 Midnite
Credit Cards: Yes
Parking & Catering: Yes
Boca Juniors is an Argentinean steakhouse, named for one of the most successful football teams, not only in Argentina, but around the world. It’s said that the owners have a close relationship with the team and its colorful interior certainly proves that. Even if you were blindfolded and walking on Queens Boulevard (which I don’t recommend), your nose and taste buds would lead you to their door. The aroma wafting through the neighborhood is “unmis-steak-able.”
Steak. We’re talking steak, churrasco and entrana, (sirloin and skirt) bife de chorzio and de lomo (shell steak and filet mignon) and dozens of other main courses, like pork ribs, chicken marsala and eight different choices of seafood, including apricot salmon.
Carnivore that I am, my job was to demolish a perfectly cooked shell steak (medium rare, please), which I did under the watchful eye of my waiter, Franco, a former restaurant owner, himself with a resume that included Tio Pepe in the Village and Armando’s in Jackson Heights. He knew how to treat his clienteles, which on this night was quiet, laid back and even romantic, filled with couples of all different age groups.
Even though I was dining solo, I was not alone; my lovely host (and co-owner) Patricia stopped by and kept me company from time to time and even forced me to have dessert… a cold and creamy specialty called a Don Pedro (two scoops of chocolate ice cream, covered in walnuts and laced with rum), which led to more conversation with a slight buzz. She gave me the story of the restaurant’s seven-year history and how everything here is made fresh daily, even my dessert.
Over at another table, Sal, from Middle Village, was celebrating a milestone, his 91st birthday. He was more animated than most teenagers I know. In a vigorous conversation he told me he’d worked for the Board of Education as a school teacher, served in World War II and settled in Middle Village under the GI Bill.
He told me that he’d been to Salerno’s and Gottlieb’s and all the rest, but that Boca Junior’s was now his favorite.
Along with the staff and the food, I assured Sal that he had made my night. He paid me the same compliment, and as we shook hands, he made me promise to join him next year for the celebration of number 92. So who am I to argue? In 30 years or so, maybe I’ll return to Boca’s and do the same thing!