Wow this place blew me and my husband away! Authentic and delicious. The knafeh and bosbousa were amazing! Will most definitely be back! Oh and they are cheap too! We a bunch of desserts to try for just $7.
The pastries are decent, I bought a mixed box of many different types. The baklava leaves alot to be desired, it is not at all top notch or even fresh, some of the pieces seem to be dry and is not soaked in honey as I am accustomed to...
I am by no mean an expert on the pastry, but I know good baklava when I taste it, why should honey taste like a simple syrup base? I am slightly disappointed after seeing such good reviews.
My search still continues for good baklava in NYC. Laziza does have Kunufa, but it was late and I decided not to try it seeing that there were only 2 pcs left. Maybe next time I am around I will try it.
Lebanese baklava?! Never would I ever have guessed....but it's exactly what we tried when we stopped by Laziza.
Baklava with pistachios - a little sweet for my taste but the boyfriend seemed to enjoy it.
Bonus points: a double espresso is the same price as a single shot of espresso ($2).
Laziza means "delicious" in Arabic. After multiple visits over the past 15 months, I'm convinced that the name of this Lebanese shop is either aspirational, or reflective of a more glorious past.
"Are we there yet?" The mile long walk after dinner at a Greek restaurant brought out the inner child in all 5 weary yelpers, particularly when we reached the brightly lit shop and trays upon trays of unfamiliar, but tempting desserts. We were like the proverbial kids in a candy store, except for the fact that age and experience has taught us of the importance of having a frame of reference - even while navigating our way in the dark.
Weary. I normally do a word association test while sitting down to review a place. The first word that comes to my mind for the experience at Laziza is weary. It started off with the server who seemed almost reluctant to name let alone describe the desserts on display, at best mouthing off one word ingredients like: Coconut or Almond. Now, I could identify at best 4 of the desserts in the display case: Baklava, Kunafe, Haressa, and Maamool and so it didn't help that we were flying blind, so as to speak. That said a group of 5 allows enough opportunity to experiment and the "give me one of each" request doesn't induce the laughter or raised eyebrows compared to a solitary guy asking for 2 dozen macarons (speaking from experience).
However, we quickly wearied of the sweets as most of them shared the common theme of being dry and somewhat stale having over-extended their welcome in the pastry display case. This was particularly the case with both versions of the Nummoora, one with Semolina, and the other with Almond. The consensus was that our favorite pastry was the Mafruka (name discovered after googling a lot of pictures!) with a semolina dough base topped with condensed milk cream having rose water, and garnished with raisins and toasted nuts. The next popular one, Ossmalleya with Kashta cream, was surprisingly light for the size of the serving. The other bite sized sweets including Baklava, Bird's nest, Maamool cookies, fingers - all disappointed.
In the interest of full disclosure: we even had a hygiene alert when far off into the distance I saw a bug that must not be named (much like Lord Voldemort), but I don't believe any of the diners had any health bugs, no pun intended.
Laziza: you have promises to keep and miles to go...
Steinway - the street of my many childhood misadventures, land of Middle Eastern treats, gyros, defunct movie theaters that become pharmacies, hot dog spots that become banks, mosques across the street from nargileh lounges - boasts some of the best food in the lovely borough of Queens.
Accompanied by two trusty friends, I made my first venture into Laziza, a bake shop-cafe and one of Steinway's many gems. The glass case is a treasure trove of Levantine/Arab pastries. The history of the Muslim and Ottoman empires present in every bite of phyllo, every crushed pistachio, every spoonful of custard.
This location is a bit small, with about 3 or 4 tables that seat 4 people, its more bakery than cafe - but in an Arab community, it has the right functionality for a cafe. My friends and I lounged here for about 2 hours.
The lady at the counter was very friendly and greeted us with a humble smile. We tried the mahalabia, baklava, and kunefe. The mahalabia was a little bit different that I've had before, I've usually had it as a rosewater custard, with pistachios sprinkled on top, this time it was a bit more gelatinous - but still good. The mini baklava was delicate and tasty. But the kunefe stole the show, lets put it like this: crispy phyllo noodles, sweet cheese, butter, sugary, and yummery.
If only cultural dialogue happened on a gastronomic level...
My cousin's friend (who is Arabic) introduced me to this place about 2 years ago and I've gone back about 3-4 times since then. Today, I was up in that area of the neighborhood and I bought a half pound of pastries (and I am working my way through the tray as I write this)
The pastries are small and they are slightly different (and not as sweet as the Greek version of baklava type pastries...lack of sweetness can be a good thing) They use honey, pistachios and cashews in their pastries and they also use shredded coconut.
They sell these pastries by the pound and they are delicious
When I first went to Laziza over 10 years ago, I honestly thought it was the best bakery ever. The person behind the counter proudly told me that all the pistachios were imported and everything was made fresh on premise and they do not sell it anywhere else.
Since then, I have returned a few times but lately, I'm afraid the quality has dropped. The date cookies were just ok and the tiny jewel-like baklavas were not as beautiful.
This place is AMAZING! Huge array of Middle Eastern deserts. Not just baklava (although they have that too.) Personally, I wanted to try EVERYTHING.
Ended up trying this delicious custard-like thing that they have on a GIANT pizza plate. On top of the custard base is a wheat topping (think frosted mini wheats), and sugar.
Also had the cake thing made from semollini, butter, and sugar. Had a texture like corn meal and was very tasty.
They had Middle Eastern tv on and everyone there spoke Arabic. Really great little shop. Yummy deserts.
I love astoria, and I love laziza! Where else can you find a bakery/cafe that's open past 12:30 at night ? Hello, night owl paradise! Whenever I go here, I proudly show others my solvineers of my travels there. A business card, and a layer of chub on my stomach. The pastries barely make it past the ride home.
I don't know the technical names for any of the treats there, and I probably never will. Weather it be mahalabia, baklava, or some strange concation of pistachio-phillyo dough-honey-cashew-goodness.... I'll eat it and enjoy it. I'm the happy little girl that runs in there, smiles and points.
Buy. Eat. Wipe Hands ... Repeat ! =)
I never knew that baklava came in different shapes and sizes, so coming into this bakery and inquiring about all the different phyllo dough desserts was a bit of an education. The woman who helped us was really friendly when she was describing all of their different desserts. The konafa dessert, which are two little squares with what appears to be shreds of subtly crunchy dough pieces sandwiching a layer of nuts and syrup, was really good - I'd never seen or had this before we came here. It was slightly lemony with a touch of rosewater - flowery goodness!
With the pastry shop's suggestion, we got about half a pound of sweets (they charge $12/lb) - diamonds, trangles, squares, cigars, tiny donut-like pieces, and cubes of baklava. There were a variety of pistachio and walnut filled ones, as well as one piece of konafa.
Our favorites were the konafa along with the cube and square-shaped baklava (we got the bite-sized ones since we wanted to try as many as possible without becoming diabetic). They were amazing - not too sweet, great, light little endless layers of phyllo dough, with a great, juicy nutty filling. Our least favorites were the cigar-shaped ones, which we thought had too much sugar shock. We wouldn't get those again.
We'll definitely be back in the area to pick up some more baklava and konafa. I've definitely never had better baklava.
After seeing Atif's post and seeing that Laziza mean's 'delicious' in Arabic, than one word can describe my experience ... LAZIZA!!
You might not think anything of the place is you're only wondeirng by, but the minute you step inside, forget about it. It's almost a little overwhelming the selection that they have, but it's exciting.
I decided to get 4 different things for my friend and I to try. We got one piece of baklava that was walnuts, honey and chocolate with chocolate drizzle on the phyllo dough. Another one was honey, pistachio and walnuts. We also got the Kanafa which was absolutely delicious. And one other item that looked like a shorter version of a biscotti with all different kinds of nuts smothered in honey and then toasted. This one was a little burnt which threw off the taste a bit, I didn't mind it but my friend certainly didn't enjoy the burnt flavor to it. For 4 desserts, which were a nice size (we were at Crave for dinner and considered getting baklava there for $5) ... so 4 pieces of different goodies is always better than one, in my eyes at least!
You've got to scope this pastry shop out if you're in the area, I promise you won't be disappointed!
this place really does have some of the best baklava I've had in my life. I'm not a food snob and I don't think I am the authority on the check of authenticity but there are other people speaking Arabic in this place and the old timers who just finished smoking hookah all day have stepped in for tea and desserts, so I'm gonna rely on that as the stamp.
Anyways, everything is good. Everything. Especially the Konafa. I can't tell you how awesome that is. It has just the right amount of sweetness and the texture of the top is like "shredded wheat" but the flavor is heightened by a slight hint of rosewater. You can have it filled with nuts or something else, but it's great. Also, the little bit sized versions are great when you only want a sampling or are just trying to keep your portions within reason.
Just a small caveat, the long cylindrical baklava's are very sweet and have a large amount of honey but I still thought the taste was great.
The lady who helped us was so nice and took the time to explain all of the items to us and help us with our questions. Before we left she also gave us each a free sample of one of the little bites of baklava. I love Queens.
Home of the best baklava I've ever eaten. If you, like me, have spent years working to perfect your homemade baklava recipe, I implore you: give it up and go to Laziza. The fact is, you will never be able to beat either the price or the amazing flavor/texture combination. But don't let the slowly-creeping realization that all your baking efforts have been in vain lead you to despair. Instead, cheer yourself up with a $5 tray of pastries that will put you in ten subtly different varieties of rose-water infused stupor.
My personal favorite is the baklava that they cut in small diamonds and arrange in a circle on a big platter, but they're really all incredible. Other patrons have sworn by the rolled up cigar-shaped ones. I have yet to try any their cakes because I can't imagine that anything could be better than their phyllo-based items, but I'm sure I'll cave soon. Go and enjoy!
After hours of smoking copious amounts of hookah and staring at Middle Eastern music television with images of heavenly attractive popstars, you might want to grab a dessert. Preferably, something with shredded wheat, fillo dough, almonds, peanuts, honey, and other yummies.
For some reason, my friends have brought on the name "Zee-on sweets" instead of Laziza for the place. If you're not too hungry, I would get a variety of baklava and bite size treats. You can get a bunch for only a few dollars.
If you want to get adventurous, go for their cream cheese based dessert. It has reddish shredded wheat layered on top. They heat it up and drizzle syrup all over. A bit pricier than the other options, but be a man. Try it out!
This place has a new owner, the shop is called Zeit w Zatar now. I have to say the new owner is really sweet and welcoming. She gave me free samples of baklava to try out. They were AMAZING ! I bought a slice of Kunafa and a box of baklava to take home, the amount sweetness was perfect ! I would definitely come back again !
I really hate to be the one to ruin the string of 5-star reviews this place has gotten, but someone has to do it. And that monster will be me.
- It's open late! I love that I can grab a dessert after a long night of smoking in Astoria.
- The prices are reasonable.
- The staff is friendly
- The desserts!! They're not that good! The other night I bought some Kunefah and it was whack. It tasted like it was made 2 days ago and reheated. The cheese wasn't stringy and sweet; instead it was hard and rubbery. Some of the worst Kunefah I've had in a long time. I was disappointed because I remembered it being better. I hope this last time was a fluke and that Laziza isn't on its way down.
I got an assortment of baklava ($12/lb). The baklava differ in shape, size, and the filling (some have walnut, others pistachio). Some of the pieces were sticky mush and other pieces were better. The ones that were shaped like little puff pastry cups or were in a triangle shape, the phyllo kept much better and were crunchy. The other ones (rectangle or diamond-shaped) were too soggy and mushy for me.
The lady who served me was really sweet and friendly.
Laziza came to me by way an enormous amount of hype both from my best friend and from the several 4-5 star reviews of this place. It's not exactly located close to my house, in fact its 40-50 miles away.
I came to Laziza for one thing, and one thing only, and that's Baklava. Let me tell you, this place did not disappoint AT ALL. After looking at their plethora of pistachio/walnut phyllo dough honey filled pastries...I was in mental chaos heaven. I had no idea where the hell to start as I kept walking back and forth from the front to the back perusing the display cases and thankfully, the best friend turned Baklava Ph.D expert with me knew exactly what to order. Baklava....Baklava...and even more Baklava, in every freakin' shape, size and thickness. Sorta like us, the human race...
This literally was the best baklava I've had in my entire life.
$12/lb isn't cheap but well worth it, trust me. It's not served in a trendy Laziza purple awning matched colored box, it's served in a styrofoam square plate wrapped in saran wrap. Now that's classy. Talk about hand friggin' picked greek goodness...(don't read that too quickly and think greek goddess...although Laziza could be the name of a Greek goddess LOL)
This place closed and they had it coming.
Go to Al Shami which would be on the opposite side of Steinway Street, and walk towards Astoria Blvd, only a block and a half down.
Don't think about it just walk......
Are you still thinking? If you are just go home.
Delicious fresh baklava at the bakery section of Titan Foods - $10/lb.
Similarly delicious baklava at Laziza's - $15/lb.
I think I'll stick to Titan; Laziza has left me feeling like I'm not getting as much sugary deliciousness for my Astoria dollar as I should be. i.e. I've left $12 lighter and with 3 little things of baklava to show for it.
I walked into this place with my friend and her son and immediately was given a warm welcome by Rasheeda, the lady behind the counter. I advised her of how I found out about this place online and she seemed pleased. She endured our ignorance about the pastries with utter kindness, explaining that all the baklava were not the same. I first was exposed to baklava in junior high and never had it since. She created a sample box for me to buy and upon hearing that tomorrow was my birthday ,made a small extra sample, "From me to you" she said. Words cannot express the overwhelming feeling. And being able to try out the baklava before buying was such an unexpected treat! My friend has never tasted it before and she adored it as much as I!
The service here is stellar and the pastries here are supreme. I am so glad that I found this place. It's like a jewel you hope to always have and pass down to others!!! Eat and Enjoy!!!
Who knew there were so many types of baklava?
If I had payed attention to math and probability in school I would be able to calculate the infinit combination of phyllo dough, honey, and pistachio.
Instead Im content getting the sweet Jordanian pizza (Kanafa). A bright red flat cake, honey sweet, with cheese on the bottom. They heat it up, and blow your mind.
I'm not particularly sold on middle eastern deserts, it seems they lack any kind of uniqueness whatsoever. Usually something of a phyllo dough filled with some kind of nut, slathered in honey. Pretty one note flavors in different shapes. The stuff they sell here is good, tastes like honey and nuts, and I had a few almond flour cookies but there's just nothing that makes me scream I must have this! The guy behind the counter was very nice and for 5 bucks I was able to sample a nice selection of sweets.
If you like Pistaccio's, Almonds, Honey, Filo Dough or any combination thereof, then look no further. I stumbled on to this place quite by accident one night when nature called and I found myself distant from any known public bathroom(her bathroom is immaculate btw). I couldn't help but try one of Laziza's fantastic looking pastries on the way out. I've been back several times since and have never tried anything that wasn't delicious. I recommend this place to anyone with a sweet tooth who wants to try something a little different then your average ice cream/chocolate/cake desserts.
The best baklava. Period. Full stop. So many shapes and sizes, and toppings. You can get your baklava by bite-sized pieces (if you have extremely good self-control), or by the pound. There are a few tables so you and your friends can enjoy some hot beverages while enjoying your pastries. I have to apologize to the Greeks, but these guys took your desert and improved on it!
I finally got to try the Kanafa tonight which looks like an orange cheese pizza pie. This is the best Jordanian bakery I know and probably the only Jordanian bakery I know. They changed hands and I was afraid the quality would go down or they would change their menu items. I am happy to say they kept all the items I am familiar with. Its a great place and prices aren't too bad too. I also got the baklava that night and it was a big piece and it was good! I can't wait to go back here again!
I was ready to give up on baklava since all I've been getting in New York was supersweet, dripping with ghee, soggy, perfume-tasting abonimations. This place changed all that. Massive variety of baklavas, kenefe, cookies, and cakes. I only came here for the baklava so I can't say anything about the other items. Baklava was best I've had here in the US. Not over-saturated in ghee, filo was fresh, good amount of nuts, and most importantly not bank-breaking expensive unlike most other places.
laziza, but a bit too sweet for me. the baklava with pistachio is the way to go, but still a bit too sweet. that said, you can taste a hint of rose or fragrant honey that make these stand out from any greek place.
cheap... unfortunately cheap for my poor waist....
I'm disappointed. I used to live around the corner from Laziza and have eaten here countless times. I would have given it a FIVE star rating when I first started eating here in 2005. Everything was fresh, crunchy, and delllllicious! I wanted to work here just so I could learn their baklava mastery! Even in early 2009 the baklavas were still tasty.
But I recently returned in January to purchase a wide variety of baklava, cookies, and kunafa and was thoroughly disappointed by everything. Everything was obviously made days (if not weeks!) prior and I ended up throwing it all away. Reading other reviewers below shows me it wasn't a one time experience but they may have gone downhill. I really hope not because this used to be the best Arabic bakery I've had in the US. :( I would have given it a 2 star rating right now had I not eaten here at least 20 times in the past with it being top notch pastries.
New York City has a street full of Middle Eastern foods and shops... who knew? I certainly didn't until I stumbled upon Steinway St. one day quite by accident. My first stop of couse was the pastry shop. All the signage in the shop is in Arabic, but not to worry... there is a sampler box available which you can point to and save yourself any embarassment. The pastries are quite good. My only complaint, which is not really about Laziza so much as it is about Middle Eastern pastries in general is that all the pastries are pretty much the same. They are all some sort of Filo dough, nut, and honey combination, and I soon realized that my sampler box contained all of the same thing just in seven or eight different shapes. But, hey... they are delicious!
I cannot believe I haven't reviewed this place yet, and am so excited that this is my 100th review! There's really nothing to say other than everything at Laziza is amazing. I've made trips to Astoria just to go to Laziza. This place is fall off your chair good, like close your eyes while you are saying, "mmmmmm....." good. My favorite is the semolina/almond cake things smothered in a sugary syrup. If I could eat that every day, I would be a very happy woman. I might just make a trip up there this week now that I think about it!
This place used to be amazing and superlative. Now it's just so-so. What a disappointment.
This is by far one of our favorite places to go for a sugar fix in the whole city. Too bad (or good thing!) it's a bit far for us, otherwise we'd be at least 10 lbs. heavier! This is the perfect place to go when you're hankering for something sweet. The selection is vast and you might want to try a bit of everything. You can do like us and get a plate of these wonderful Middle-Eastern pastries to share and a cup of coffee for an incredibly reasonable price, to either eat in or take out with you. It's worth the trip!
warning stay away from this place! if your addicted to sweets. this place has so many choice of sweets that if you look at it you will go crazy. the service is nice, the sweets are delicious. but good luck with parking since there isn't any. the municipal parking is like six blocks away.
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