#MonthlyPicks | January’17 by Bishop Taylor
BY Michael Gillen
SHI (47-20 Center Blvd.) in Long Island City is a Pan-Asian eatery owned by Shi Lee, a Chinese entrepreneur. What makes this my favorite restaurant is the owner’s personal touch and passion for the industry. When Shi opened the restaurant, he made it a priority to be there every day to greet every single customer who walked through the doors. He called regular customers by their first names and treated them like royalty. Shi believes in this business and also owns two other restaurants in Manhattan. The service at SHI is excellent, and it’s one of the best places to dine in LIC.
The Taste of LIC, organized by The Chocolate Factory Theater, is an annual celebration of Long Island City’s cultural and culinary excellence. More than 40 local food and beverage purveyors gather along the gorgeous East River Waterfront at Gantry Plaza State Park at 49th Avenue and Center Boulevard to serve samples of their exquisite favorites. Cuisines include French, Peruvian, Mexican, and Italian. The 2017 event takes place on Monday, June 13.
I absolutely love 45th Avenue in Hunters Point between 21st and 23rd streets. This stretch features 19th century brownstones that are a must see.
Paretti Hall (38-62 11th St.) has been one of my favorite venues since I was a young boy. It is located on 11th Street between 38th and 40th avenues in Long Island City. In the 1970s, my father, the late Bishop Moses Taylor, planned to buy the building and create a worship center there. The owner, Mr. Paretti, decided to let my father use the hall for two years. Then, my dad decided not to buy the building after all, which I think was a huge mistake. Paretti Hall was later sold to Warehouse 11 LLC. It was known for hosting beautiful weddings and large parties through the years. This is definitely an alluring building, and I am honored to have had a chance to enjoy it over the years.
Bishop Mitchell G. Taylor has lived in and around Queensbridge Houses for most of his life. He is co-founder and CEO of Urban Upbound and senior pastor at Center of Hope International. He is also a recipient of the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York’s Martin Luther King Jr. Award.