Ambassador Program

The Ambassador provides you with first-hand experiences of a culture – centered in Queens, NY.

The latest evolution of the Ambassador is taking place at restaurants throughout Jackson Heights, Queens. At these participating restaurants, the chef is your Ambassador. All you have to do is pay $10 (or $20) and the staff will give you their picks of the day for your meal. It’s easy and everyone comes out on top. Look for the sticker around the neighborhood – even if they don’t speak English, just point to the sticker and your ordering will be taken care of.



Cafe K2 aka Bombay Chat, 73-19 37th Rd
Chilli Chicken, 75-18 37th Ave
*New* Dera Restaurant, 7209 Broadway
Dhauligiri Kitchen, 3738 72nd St
Delhi Heights, 37-66 74th St ($20)
Taste of the Himalayas, 37th Avenue window of Delhi Heights
Gangjong Kitchen, 72-24 Roosevelt Ave
Hamro Bhim’s Cafe, 74-10 37th Rd
Jackson Heights Food Court, 73-07 37th Rd:
– Bangladeshi in the back
– Nepali in the front
Juju’s Bagel Cafe, 35-62 76th St (pictured at right)
Little Tibet Restaurant (new owners, formerly Zomsa), 72-19 Roosevelt Ave
Namaste (rear of Merit Kebab House), 37-67 74th St
*New* Phayul, 74-06 37th Rd
Tibetan Mobile AKA Lhasa Fast Food, rear of 37-50 74th St


The Ambassador also hosts a series of meals around the city. We have one expert of a culture lead a group of people for their own dream meal in their favorite eating environment. The menu is entirely chosen by the ambassador. Guests pay for the ambassador’s portion and the results are written up somewhere on the internet. Everyone wins. If you are interested in hosting your own event, email me jeffsayyes gmail.

Past Ambassador Programs:
Dining at Balaboosta with an Expert (Kosher Like Me)
Israeli Ambassador at Balaboosta with Naama Shefi (Mal and Di’s Excellent Adventure)
Nepalese with Nirmal Thapa at Woodside Cafe (Mal and Di’s Excellent Adventure)
Burmese Ambassador with Sophie Stone
Bangladeshi Ambassador at Khaabar Baari (Restaurant Baby Madeline Leung)
Khaabar Baari Bangladeshi with Rashid Mohammed (Quest of Au Gourmand)
Yakitori Ambassador with Yasushi Sasaki at Tori Shin (Love Story by Betty Chung)
Bittersweet Yakitori (Eat Your World)
Tori Shin intro (Quest of Au Gourmand)
Tori Shin Demonstration (Quest of Au Gourmand)
Egyptian Ambassador with Sally Attia at Cherry Cafe (Quest of Au Gourmand)
Hot Pot Ambassador with Kian Lam Kho (Talisa Chang via World to Table)
Sri Lankan with Joseph Aranha at Bownie (World to Table)
Fritura Truck Crawl with Sara M.
Ruen Tira – Our Thai Ambassador takes us to Ploy Thai
Amy Lau takes us to Cafe Kashkar for Uighur cuisine (write-up missing)
Kabab King in Jackson Heights makes it big (Joseph Aranha)
Joseph Aranha’s Pakistani Kabab King Ambassador Dinner (Sara Under the 7)
BBQ Ambassador at RUB and Hill Country with James Boo (Tara’s Blog)
Jack Eichenbaum tour of Flushing (write-up missing, here is his website)
French Ambassador at Bistro Les Minots with Henri (Joe Howansky)
Astoria’s French Connection (Vivian Ibeas, via Edible Queens’ World’s Fare)
Filipino Ambassador at Tito Rads with Stella Dacuma (The Spatula Queen)
Indian Ambassador Joseph Aranha shows us Little India
Tex-Mex Night with Jenny Miller (James Boo)
M&T Northern Chinese with Joe DiStefano

Article from Queens Tribune on the Ambassador Program and JHFG
World’s Fare blog post A table for 14 at Flushing’s M&T

Blog Posts:
Religious Experience at the Filipino Ambassador Program

Here, a guide will order for the table and discuss what we are eating and why we are eating it. Not a classroom experience, but more of a familial gathering centered around the food. This allows us diners to let go, eat well, and expand our boundaries for the city, the world and our palates.

There are a few barriers to eating in a new culture. One is walking in the door. Another is deciphering the menu. Another problem is: given one first impression at a restaurant, there is a lot of pressure to order right. This aims to relieve all of these problems.

Who are these ambassadors?? It’s you. I am looking in the general public to find people who have this as their idea of fun. The incentive is to party with a large group, order your dream meal, and have the night paid for by the ones you are leading. I do not intend this to be a classroom environment at all, just tell the group what we are ordering, and whatever else you want to tell them about the culture and be willing to answer any questions the group has.

There is no schedule. Events happen when ambassadors approach me. These adventures may take place anywhere in the city limits and occur at anytime – whatever it takes. If you want in, send me your email.


I am looking for Ambassadors. As an Ambassador, you will have complete control over a magnificent feast of your expertise, all paid for by the group of attendees.

I prefer to have the ambassador to have grown up in the culture they are representing. It is impossible to get the type of knowledge we are looking for from studying or visiting alone. Also, I prefer to have each ambassador have only one program each. If you are interested in doing one outside of your own culture, I recommend you find a friend in that culture to lead it – you can probably learn from them too!

You can talk to me at jeffsayyes (at] gmail or 541-YES-JEFF


  1. […] Ambassador Program […]

  2. […] food ambassador, Jeff Orlick, launched the ingenious Ambassador Plates program being piloted in Jackson Heights, Queens where the chef is your ambassador to the cuisine […]

  3. Hey Jeff,

    Reading about your ambassador dinners, sounds like a great idea. My gf and I live in Astoria but come to JH often. Any chance we can be on the mailing list for future dinners?



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