A Grand Old Time
37-01 30th Ave., Astoria
Cuisine: Modern Diner
Hours: Mon-Thurs 8 a.m. to 2 a.m., Fri-Sun 8 a.m. to 3 a.m.
The Grand Café tries to be all things to all people - so long as the word casual is in there somewhere. The restaurant bills itself as high end casual food and it certainly delivers, serving great food to someone in shorts or a suit. The interior of the restaurant is split among many different zones, including booths, large tables and more intimate tables for two, but all of these disparate elements are held together by the tasteful interior design, which is both creative and not overwhelming.
But do yourself a favor and sit outside if the weather is worth it. The breeze, the bustle of 30th Avenue and the ample space around this street corner café is charming and there's something about the outdoors that make digesting easier - and you'll be doing plenty of that.
Get the skirt steak, made from silver medallion Black Angus meat from the local butcher; it is definitely a specialty. The rest of the food was tasty and there is plenty of variety on the menu. Being in Astoria, the Grand Café offers good eggplant, hummus and artichoke spinach, as well as a wide variety of desserts and great specialty drinks. The salads were fresh and robust as well.
The prices are "casual" as well, in that they are no deep discounts, but the high quality food makes the cost reasonable.
The Grand Café also features a private room with a separate side entrance, which is perfect for baby showers or corporate functions.