Ion’s Ups the Romanian Ante in Long Island City

ion's cafe

Your go-to spot in the LIC for Romanian sausages.Photo: Sarah Lohman

New York has seen a Romanian renaissance in recent years: Along with Sunnysides wonderful Romanian Garden and the serviceable Acasa, now Ions Corner Caf brings the cuisine to Long Island City. Ions, like most of New Yorks Romanian restaurants, is filled with hungry Romanians, migrs who like value and arent looking for watered-down flavors.

Ions menu is larger and somewhat more refined than those of its competitors: Along with peasant dishes like tripe soup with garlic and sour cream, theres also delicate salatat de icre (fish-roe salad), a hearty but not monochromatic mushroom-and-polenta stew, and mititei (Romanian-style minced meat rolls) that's garlicky as all get-out and served with rice pilaf, bean stew, and various rugged starches. Dont miss the carnaciori oltenesti, little pork sausages typical of southern Romania. Ions light and airy dcor contrasts with the barren stretch of Vernon Boulevard it occupies, at the foot of the Roosevelt Island Bridge. If you have a car, its worth the trip.

Ions Caf, 36-01 Vernon Boulevard; 718-786-3236

Ion's Menu