Art & Culture

A Dominican Bodega That Sells Amazing Food for a Great Price

By Benjamin Amirazodi

Volume 3 Issue 1

November 7, 2022

A Dominican Bodega That Sells Amazing Food for a Great Price

Image provided by Jovanny Quiroz

The Papo Deli is located on Rockaway Avenue in Valley Stream. Despite being called a deli, it is technically a bodega. For those who do not know, a bodega is a type of store popularized in Puerto Rico where the owners would not only sell food but also anything that they can sell. For example, one could buy cleaning supplies, food, utensils, and about anything relating to taking care of your home or self-care. Some food you can buy in Papo Deli are chicharron which is pork with a tough layer of skin on it, pernil which is similar to pulled pork, and even sodas like Inca Cola, which is a Peruvian soda, spaghetti and sandwiches filled with meat, usually pork, and vegetables. Normally when I go there, I like to get a small or medium plate of pernil, rice with beans and an Inca Kola. This place is also faried-priced; one could get the most delicious, fair-sized portion of lunch, some of which might serve as another meal, for around seven or ten dollars. The workers here are also very kind, especially if you are a regular customer at the deli. The workers will almost always try to make small talk and ask how your day is going, however you should keep in mind that not all the workers speak English fluently, so if you don’t get a response right away ask someone else or if you can speak to them in Spanish. Sometimes you might run into a regular customer, which isn't too uncommon because there are two Spanish barbers nearby, they normally like to greet everyone when walking in and say goodbye to everyone when leaving. Which is always nice and always brightens up the mood.