A Nice Card
When we’re picking out a card for someone special, we tend to like a lot of aisle space – great big long ones, with lots and lots of selections ranging from the serious and thoughtful to the playful and humorous. Consequently, we’ve always been big fans of the CVS/pharmacy on Grand Avenue in Maspeth, always up to the minute (and somewhat ahead of the game, for that matter) no matter what holiday occasion is looming on the horizon. And over in Middle Village, we’re really impressed with how the folks at GR STATIONERY STORE have re-configured their entire store to better showcase their various gifts, cards, etc., with an emphasis on family fun and all kinds of gifts and accessories for your little ones. Anyway, those are the first two places we’ll be heading! (CVS/pharmacy, 69-80 Grand Avenue in Maspeth (718) 424-2846; GR STATIONERY STORE, 64-67 Dry Harbor Road in Middle Village (718) 894-0816.)
A Bouquet of Flowers
“Say it with flowers,” is the expression, and without question, one of the best at it are the Bekios Family and GRAND FLORIST on the corner of Grand and Remsen. There is such an array of fresh-cut seasonals, roses, orchids, etc. here, and when it comes to floral arrangements and bouquets, you can always count on their going the extra mile to ensure that your someone special will definitely know that they really are. Over in Astoria, we’re also impressed with the very hard-working folks right next door to LA GULI PASTRY, the appropriately named DITMARS FLOWER SHOP. And since it really doesn’t matter where you live, especially if you’re ordering by phone – we’d also recommend the great service and nice selection at FLOWERS BY GIORGIE in Sunnyside, right there on Greenpoint Avenue. But if you ask us, you might want to head in and check it out personally, the place is huge! (GRAND FLORIST, 65-37 Grand Avenue in Maspeth (718) 326-1090; DITMARS FLOWER SHOP, 29-11 Ditmars Boulevard in Astoria (718) 726-4453; FLOWERS BY GIORGIE, 45-26 Greenpoint Avenue in Sunnyside (718) 784-2584.)
Some Chocolates Maybe?
What can we say, but Mother’s Day is really like Valentine’s Day for Moms, wouldn’t you say? Well, thinking along those lines then, how about a nice assortment of chocolates to show you care. We can’t think of two better places for same than AIGNER CHOCOLATES (aka KRAUSE’S CANDY KITCHEN) in Forest Hills, or the very epitome of Polish chocolate, SLODYCZE WEDEL in Greenpoint. WEDEL will give you those heart-shaped tins you’ll probably be looking to make a point with – as well as a whole host of fruit-filled and cream-filled wonders you’re going to want to sample yourself first. AIGNER CHOCOLATES, on the other hand, excels at the home-made, and their truffles especially just might be the perfect offering to get that Mom in your life on your side – at least for one day! (AIGNER CHOCOLATES aka KRAUSE’S CANDY KITCHEN, 103-02 Metropolitan Avenue in Forest Hills (718) 544-1850; SLODYCZE WEDEL, 772 Manhattan Avenue in Greenpoint (718) 349-3933.)
A Thoughtful Gift?
If you’re looking for something quaint and charming and hip and fun, we adore the newly relocated shop known as BROOKLYNSKI, on Graham Avenue in Williamsburg, and one of the more charming and eclectic we’ve ever encountered. But if jewelry’s where you think you ought to be heading, then keep going just a few blocks south on Graham past Metropolitan and step into TIVOLI JEWELERS, easily one of the most impressive jewelry stores around. Even though you’re still in Brooklyn, you can’t help feeling that you’ve just stepped into Manhattan the moment you arrive, and hopefully some of that big-city luxury will rub off on that special Mom in your life, too. We also have to seriously recommend two places in Maspeth and Forest Hills (LAFYES JEWELRY and CHATEAU JEWELERS), who for years and years now have been providing our community with not just a great and memorable product, but really friendly and personal service, the hallmark of any successful enterprise over time. (BROOKLYNSKI, 351 Graham Avenue in Williamsburg (718) 389-0901; TIVOLI JEWELERS, 327 Graham Avenue in Williamsburg (718) 384-1305; LAFYES JEWELRY, 65-43 Grand Avenue in Maspeth (718) 894-0360; CHATEAU JEWELERS, 71-35 Austin Street in Forest Hills (718) 544-8999.)
Now, if you really want to splurge – and come on, who are we kidding, isn’t this the time to do it? – well then how about a nice little spa treatment for Mom, or a little facial, or some coloring courtesy of YOU! Well, tops on your list should definitely be the always-on-top-of-their game MICCICHE SALON in Forest Hills. And hey, if our own Mom (the original “Best” of the Best, by the way!) swears by the place, then you know it’s got to be good. Over at ATLAS PARK in Glendale, you can also experience an oasis of one-of-a-kind splendor if you let the magicians at FLORIS SPA & NAILS do their bidding with you. In fact, maybe you and the Mom in your life ought to try it together – because you probably won’t want to leave the place all day! (MICCICHE SALON, 73-01 Austin Street in Forest Hills (718) 544-1246; FLORIS SPA & NAILS, 8000 Cooper Avenue in Glendale, The Shops At Atlas Park (718) 326-2656.)
Wine ‘n’ Dine Her!
Look, what can we tell you, folks, but if there’s one day Mom sure as heck shouldn’t be cooking, it’s Mother’s Day, right? Anyway, we’re not really inclined to pick favorites here, but there are a whole host of area establishments bringing out special Mother’s Day menus in order to give such a special occasion its due. In Middle Village, your hosts Tommy Ruth and Dennis Boissell at DANNY BOY’S have created quite a special Mother’s Day menu with Shrimp & Lobster Bisque, appetizers like their Home-Made Crabcakes or Irish Smoked Salmon, and exceptional entrees like their Roast Loin of Pork, DANNY BOY’S Prime Rib of Beef (either King Cut – or Queen Cut for Mom!) and the very special Chicken Passage East, an old County Waterford recipe that has to be tasted to be believed. And in Brooklyn, wait’ll you see what Joe and Eleanor Donatelli have got cooking at DESTEFANO’S in Williamsburg – Mozzarella de Crostino, Chicken Cordon Bleu, Lobster Ravioli, and more! AUSTIN’S STEAK & ALE HOUSE in Kew Gardens is hosting a special Mother’s Day brunch this Sunday from 11:30 to 3:00 and then dinner is served, beginning at 3:00 (reservations required) featuring sumptuous offerings like Shrimp & Crabmeat Fritters and entrees like Pan-Seared Duck Breast and Grilled Colorado Rack of Lamb. KELLYS on Eliot Avenue is offering a complimentary drink to Mom for Mother’s Day, and is proud to announce the debut of their 1300-square foot outdoor patio for your dining pleasure. And at O’NEILL’S in Maspeth, The O’Neill Family are pulling out all the stops on Mother’s Day, with one of their most extensive menu offerings ever – showcasing a number of specialties like Lobster Puffs, Clams Casino, Chicken Breast Stuffed with Artichoke Hearts, Seared Soft Shell Crabs, and their famous Porterhouse. And then, of course, if it’s Mother’s Day Italian-style you’re looking to celebrate, you’d best get yourself to the oh-so-delightful MANDUCATI’S RUSTICA in Long Island City, one of our absolute favorites, where proprietor Gianna Cerbone truly honors matriarch Ida and her traditions every single day of her life. (DANNY BOY’S, 64-56 Dry Harbor Road in Middle Village (718) 894-3488; DESTEFANO’S, 89 Conselyea Street in Williamsburg (718) 384-2836; AUSTIN’S STEAK & ALE HOUSE, 82-70 Austin Street in Kew Gardens (718) 849-3939; KELLYS, 82-11 Eliot Avenue in Middle Village (718) 476-8444; O’NEILL’S, 64-21 53rd Drive in Maspeth (718) 672-9696; MANDUCATI’S RUSTICA, 46-31 Vernon Boulevard in Long Island City (718) 937-1312.)
Just Tell Her You Love Her…
Look, it’s not because we’re over 1000 words at this point – it’s because this idea is really the BEST of the best of ‘em. (And it certainly doesn’t preclude your obligation to try and rise to the occasion with any of the above suggestions, but at the very least, let’s make sure we do this one, no?) Because if there’s one day we have to make sure we’re appreciative, one day we have to make sure we’re thankful, one day we have to make sure we’re listening (and will continue to do so) – it’s Mother’s Day!
So from all of us here, wherever you’re celebrating, Happy Mother’s Day...