Place for primal cuts, preparation

Floresta in Sunnyside represents the best of what New York food culture has to offer – a native son rooted in the culinary traditions of his homeland.
Chef Alejandro Cantagallo grew up surrounded by bone saws and primal cuts in his father’s butcher shop in Jackson Heights. After the shop closed, the Argentine sausage purveyor wanted to carry on the carnivore legacy and present the community with the quality and flavors he was accustomed to.
“With Floresta, I wanted to create a restaurant destination with a butcher’s preparation,” he said. “Most restaurants don’t do their own butchering, but I try to keep as many primal cuts on hand as possible.”
Any restaurant that lists chorizo, sweetbreads and beef offal among their side dishes must be serious about their meats – and Floresta does just that. The chorizo is made completely in-house by professionals and has that audible snap, signifying great sausage. The sweetbreads are simply prepared with salt and the flavors of the grill. The char-flavoring is all this delicate dish needs to become a favorite.
The stars of Floresta’s appetizer list are undoubtedly the garlic shrimp and the empanadas. The shrimp is sautéed in a garlic and wine sauce so mouthwatering you’ll be wiping the plate clean with warm, crusty bread. The empanadas are served stuffed with chicken, beef, spinach or ham and cheese. The beef and spinach empanadas stood out, with the beef spiced just right and the spinach creamy and inviting.
But again, we are here for the meat and Floresta does not disappoint. The New York strip steak is tender, juicy and requires no extra seasoning whatsoever. Really good steak only needs its own flavors to shine – Floresta knows this and minimizes the seasoning to salt and char. It’s served with French fries seasoned with garlic and parsley.
Floresta also serves pork chops, herb-roasted chicken, a porterhouse for two, rib lamb chops, sirloin, bone-in rib eye, babyback ribs, and skirt steak. The meats are beyond reasonably priced for the expertise that goes into each and every dish.
Salads are also a must get at Floresta. The house salad features mixed greens, cranberries, gorgonzola, candied pecans, tomato and onion – the candied pecans add a sweet and crunchy element to a salad that will surprise and delight your palate. But the truly amazing salad is the award-winning steak salad. Voted Best Entrée at the 2010 Queens Taste of the World, it is simply skirt steak over arugula and parmesan cheese.
Head to Floresta for delicious food and great wine served by a friendly, attentive staff in a serene and artistic setting. Also, save room for the flan.

Argentine Steakhouse and Cuisine
41-08 Greenpoint Avenue
Sunnyside, NY 11104
Tel: 718-784-1305
Fax: 718-784-1335
Hours: Tuesday through Thursday, 4 – 10 p.m.
Friday and Saturday, noon – 11 p.m.
Sunday noon – 10 p.m.
Monday – Closed
Lunch Menu: Yes
Catering: Yes
Takeout: Yes
Most Major Credit Cards Accepted