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It’s that time of the year when many of us city dwellers make our annual pilgrimage to lie in the sand at the edge of the sea, for a few hours, or a few days… Photographer Valery Rizzo hit Rockaway Beach to document the seasonal migratory ritual, with a focus on the celebrated new food concessions adorning the boardwalk this year. If you haven’t been out to ‘the new’ Rockaway yet, go, people, just go.

'Surfing Only' from Beach 87th to 92nd Streets.

At Rippers at 86th Street, along with buying some wax for your board you can also keep cool while sipping an Ecuadorian, made with fresh cucumber, mint and agave. Surfer Mia Woolrich, originally from Australia, gives the waves at Rockaway a try.

Blue Bottle Coffee serves up cappuccino and handmade granola at Beach 106th Street and shares the space with Caracas Arepa Bar which offers a variety of homemade Venezuelan food.

Superb La Fresh Arepas, which are corn-flour rounds made from scratch daily and filled with white cheese, tomato and avocado with a side of sweet spicy sauce, go well together with a Hibiscus Iced Tea or a Passion Fruit Juice, and are just a few of the many delights you can order at Caracas Arepa Bar.


Gato Barrios is co-owner with his wife Maribel Araujo of Caracas Arepa Bar.

Bicycle on Boardwalk, Rockaway Beach, New York.

Founder Erin McKenna of Vegan bakery Babycakes NYC serves up delicious, all natural and organic, refined sugar-free, gluten-free, wheat-free, soy-free, casein-free, egg-free, vegan and kosher desserts.

Emma McCarthy mixes fresh pop at the P&H Soda Co. counter along side Rockaway Taco serving flautas, chips with guacamole and salads. A fresh young coconut from Rockaway Taco and a Hake Fish sandwich from Motorboat & the Big Banana.

Hake fillet with slaw, pickled onions and a sharp tartar sauce enclosed in a grilled hot dog bun from Motorboat & the Big Banana, a fish fry shack and frozen banana stand. Tossing and seasoning the fresh french fries.

Lines forming at the concession stands inside a bunker at Beach 96th Street, Rockaway Beach.

A European tourist and her children having their lunch prepared at one of the boardwalk food carts, Sharon is Karen, which serves open-faced pickle sandwiches.

Isaac Friedman-Heiman, chef and owner of Sharon is Karen, was inspired by a trip to Spain where he observed the Mediterranean diet and how they preserve food. Bicycle rentals on the Boardwalk.

Zachary Krieger of Veggie Island and Coffee Co, which serves cucumber water, iced tea, coffee, fruit smoothies and breakfast items. Try their mango, banana and kale smoothie.

Hammocks hung under the boardwalk together with rows of surfboards at Beach 92nd Street.

All photos © Valery Rizzo. All rights reserved.

Valery is a Park Slope-based professional photographer with a love of good food and all things Brooklyn. You can find more of her work on her website, and you can follow her food adventures on her photo blog, Eating Brooklyn.

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13 Responses to Surf’s Up: A Photo Tour of The Rockaway Boardwalk’s New Food Scene

  1. Pingback: Food fit for Queens | Kale and Ale

  2. Sexxy writing, got my family what I needed – thx!

  3. I’ll be following your website. =)

  4. Sofortkredit says:

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  9. Stefania says:

    I am Australian and visited NYC with my family in 2009 and we like many millions have been transfixed ever since. I was a complete Euro traveller previously. My love for Brooklyn has developed since my return I have always been obsessed with cooking, baking etc..and Brooklyn is now so intriguing to me. We are planning on returning in the not too distant future and I think I might find accommodation in Brooklyn instead of Manhatten so I can really enjoy it all…..wish I was at Rockaway beach now looks fantastic fun (winter in Sydney). xo

  10. I biked here over memorial day weekend and went to Rockaway Taco. It was amazing! I’ve since learned about all these other wonderful places mentioned here and can’t wait to go back. These photos are beautiful and make me want to hop on my bike right now and get some donuts and arepas!

  11. m. zonis says:

    We have been living out here since 1972. All our kids have had the pleasure of growing up at this beach and the area.
    Since this new insurgence, it has given the area a new life. Bike rentals, Umbrella rentals, Ti food, Vegetarian selections, all different non-alcoholic beverages…

    Thank you to the guys who had faith in Rockaway…and gave it hopefully a new look and life.

    Thank you….

  12. michelle says:

    love these photos! they are making me hungry! beautiful work!

  13. Pingback: Sharon in Karen - Montevidayo

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