Eats in Queens Restaurant Month launches with discounts at 50 participating restaurants

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Eat in Queens Restaurant Month kicked off on March 1 with 50 participating restaurants across Queens.
Photo courtesy of Queens Together

The second annual Eats in Queens Restaurant Month is underway with close to 50 restaurants offering promotions throughout March. 

The goal of the month-long event, organized by the nonprofit Queens Together, is to raise funds for food relief through community partnerships across the borough while also supporting restaurants with increased business. 

On March 1, the founder of Queens Together Jonathan Forgash was joined by local restaurant owners and city officials at The Queensborough restaurant in Jackson Heights to promote the initiative. 

“This is a great way to promote the incredible diversity of restaurants we have in Queens and it’s a great way to help make our communities stronger by utilizing the strength of small businesses,” said Michael Fuquay, co-owner of The Queensborough. 

By donating $25 or more to Queens Together, anyone can receive discounts or special menu items at any of the participating restaurants across the borough from Astoria to Bayside. Al Guey, a Mexican restaurant in Woodside, is offering participants 20% off their entire bill. And other restaurants such as M. Wells, a Quebec steakhouse in Long Island City and Rincon Salvadoreno, an El Salvadorian restaurant in Jamaica, are offering special menus designed just for EIQ Restaurant Month. 

With a similar model last year, Queens Together raised $36,000 that paid for dozens of food distribution events. The organization focuses on making sure food donations are culturally appropriate by listening to the community organizations, such as food pantries and religious institutions, and recruiting restaurants to prepare meals that are in line with the needs of the communities. 

Founded shortly after the pandemic began in March 2020, Queens Together has grown into a restaurant-powered food relief organization that has provided hot meals and groceries to almost 450,000 people. It’s partnered with organizations such as the Jackson Heights Community Fridge and the MinKwon Center in Flushing. 

“Something beautiful came out of it. Not only just supporting the restaurants and eating great food and having a wonderful experience. But something bigger than that. Serving the people in the communities that really need the support,” said Andrew Rigie, Executive Director of NYC Hospitality Alliance. 

This year, Queens Together is already on track to raise more for food relief than it did last year. Last year the organization had close to 200 participating restaurants, but this year with a quarter of the eateries participating, the organizers hope to give restaurants more individual promotion and collaborate with special events. 

Neir’s Tavern, one of the participating restaurants in Woodhaven, is hosting a Good Fellas challenge on March 10. Meanwhile, Nangma Restaurant in Elmhurst is hosting a buffet dinner with happy hour drinks specials on March 14 for all-access pass holders. 

“Restaurants are bleeding hearts,” said Loy Gordon, owner of Neir’s Tavern. “What Queens Together is doing is actually healing our bleeding hearts.”