Joe D.

Video Verified
Contact Me My Wish Lists Review Me

My friend Rob calls me the “foremost Caucasian expert on Asian food in Queens.” The New York Times calls me an “invaluable food sleuth.”And New York magazine calls me the “guy who ate Queens.” I prefer to think of myself as the man who ate his way around the world without ever leaving Queens. It’s an ongoing mission that I chronicle on my blog, CHOPSTICKSANDMARROW. I live to discover new regional Chinese food courts, Mexican street foods, Nepalese dumplings, and Indian junk food. I’ve been told that I take too many photos of food. My response: “Wait, don’t eat that yet!”

Vayable Ambassador

This outstanding guide is a member of our Ambassador program!
Vayable Ambassadors make your travel experience extra special.

Reviews for Joe D.
Noor A.

This tour was the ultimate treat for my palate!! Joe is extremely knowledgeable and funny,with the slightest touch of sarcastic humor at just the right times. I enjoyed being guided through the nooks and crannies of Flushing experiencing the most enjoyable flavors from places I would NEVER had thought to go in myself. Joe knows exactly what to get from where and I promise, the sight, smell and tastes will be lingering on your tongue long enough to bring you back and have second go! If you love food and want to discover new tastes, go exploring with Joe, he'll take you on the best ride of you life!!

Neta W.

It was not great. I know and love Chinese cuisine, and was really excited about this opportunity. I agree with the others who wrote that this may be a good tour for people with no knowledge of this cuisine or no travel experience - for people who have been places and feel comfortable just wondering around and trying new things this tour just does not add enough value. The stories, information, and knowledge just did not flow the way I would expect them to in such a tour. I would have had more fun, I think, wondering in Flushing on my own.

Stephen W.

Brought a large group of 11 people on this tour -- probably larger than Joe is accustomed to. To be honest, this tour fell short of expectations, especially after reading all of the positive reviews. For the money, I would have expected a lot more food. My entire group grabbed another meal shortly after the tour. Highlights: Flushing is a truly great place to explore. If you haven't been, you should definitely check it out. Joe took us to some places I had never been before & a couple of dishes were truly unique/spectacular (the Tofu window was truly a great find). Negatives: Very little discussion, information, commentary was provided. The tour did not seem very organized. Again, for the amount of money paid, there were surprisingly few dishes: We tried approximately 9 separate dishes (very small portions...usually a bite or 2 of each) at 6 to 7 places. I had been to Flushing many times, and my group had all traveled or lived in China previously, so maybe our expectations were too high. However, the orders were just too small and we passed too many delicious items that were not ordered.

Albert C.

According to the reviews, this looks like a food tour I'd love to go on. I like the fact you get to try a variety of authentic items and that you go to places off of the beaten path. Joe is a nice, easy-going guy as well, so many props to him!

Charles (.

My wife and I had great time with Joe. He took us to places we would never found on our own and the foods he recommended were only the best of the best. We toured restaurants, food markets and even visited a Hindu Temple which was beautiful including having Indian food in the basement of the Temple. The knowledge Joe provided only comes from experience. We travel to NYC usually twice a year and over all the visits this was one of the most amazing and satisfing experiences we have had. Thanks again Joe. The Brewers


Joe's jaunt through Flushing Chinatown (the best Chinatown in NYC) is the gold standard in food tours ... totally knowledgeable of the area and where to find the best dishes. We did plenty of eating (you won't go hungry) and walking, and Joe was ready with answers for all our questions. It was a totally fun and satisfying three hours. Book this tour and you won't be disappointed.

Scott S.

Joe DiStefano really knows food and he shares what he knows on this food tour. I would never have visited any of the Asian restaurants we went to on my own. He takes you to the truely authentic Chinese were there is no English menu or English spoken and guides you to the best dishes that each place makes. This tour has opened an entire new world of food for me and I can now go to the China towns of Queens, Manhattan, SanFrancisico, or any othe city and explore the food with the knowledge that I learned from Joe. This tour was really worth every penny for what I learned and the food was phenomenal. Every place we went to was a new food I had never had before and each dish was amazing. Joe also takes you through the Chinese markets and tells you what all of those exotic looking ingredients are and what dishes they are used in and then when you are at the next eatery he gives you the choice of having a dish with some of those those new found ingredients. I highly recommend that you get out of Manhattan and explore the food in the other boroughs with Joe. There is a whole new world out there to eat and you are missing it.

Rebecca R.

Amazing food at tiny little hole-in-the-wall places we never would have found ourselves in a million years. Lots of fun!

Jean G.

In a neighborhood that can seem like another country entirely, Joe was a wonderful guide, leading us to hole-in-the-wall food stands, incredible markets, and beautiful temples for a terrific out-of-the-box travel experience. Highly recommended--and be sure to bring your appetite.


That was really amazing trip i am loving it !

Bill B.

Joe knows his Chinese food. It was a moveable feast in which we walked around the neighborhood to various food emporiums like the tea carts in a dim sum restaurant move from table to table. Joe made an effort to understand how adventurous we wanted to be and tailored his food choices to what would we would like. All of the dishes were great, some familiar and one that I would guessed was mid-eastern not Chinese. We even had time a jaunt to a Hindu temple and some Indian food. I highly recommend to anyone who already loves Chinese food and wants to experience the best of the best in an authentic setting.

Sam W.

Joe gave us an incredible tour and a really, really memorable day. Everything was well thought through, the food was terrific, and Joe was great to spend an afternoon with!


Took this tour back in mid Oct so bit delayed on my review since I usually never bother but I felt like I needed to provide my positive feedback because I thoroughly enjoyed the tour because it delivered more than expected. Went with my boyfriend who had just returned from his East Asian trip so he was in a good position to do a comparative review. He definitely was pleased to find that the food tasted just like the food he tried over in East Asia. Besides all the great food that Joe made us try, he provided historical background of the area as well so that was a treat. We stopped at a Korean market and Hindu temple which we didn't expect so another great treat. Joe is really down to earth which is great given that we're not exactly gourmet chefs so we felt comfortable enough to ask any questions. Definitely would recommend this tour and looking to sign up for more tours with Joe. NOTE: Ladies, make sure you wear very comfortable shoes since you will be on your feet 90% of the time. It's all about the food on this tour.

Danny S.

He was very knowledgeable of the neighborhood and introduced us to some great spots

Stephen U.

Whether you are a first time visitor to New York, a frequent visitor, or you live here - Joe D's tour of Flushing Chinatown is a must-do. There are still mysterious places to visit and exotic experiences to be had in New York City, but most of them are not on Manhattan. Spend a few hours with Joe D and you'll see what I mean. You'll enjoy great Chinese regional cuisines, a bit of Thai food and a few surprises (I won't include any spoilers in my review.) Highly recommended for those with an adventurous palate - and good walking shoes.


I thought the concept was very interesting. I most enjoyed walking about the residential areas and visiting the Thai temple. I would have really like to have known about the New Years festival in advance and possible I would have picked that day to take the tour. I thought the guide was personable and gave an adequate amount of time. I would have liked a little more food for the amount of money charged and not as many small desserts.

Damien G.

It was a fun introduction to Chinese food in Flushing. Joe took us to all these little food joints that probably only the locals know about.