By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska | May 2, 2017 4:21pm
QUEENS — A popular Asian bistro on Forest Hills’ so-called “Restaurant Row,” closed temporarily as it expands its dining area into an adjacent storefront which has been vacant for the past two years, the owners said.
MoCA, at 107-18 70th Road, closed on Monday as it’s taking over a portion of the space next door where Uno Pizzeria and Grill was until it closed in June 2015.
Karen Xiong, the manager of MoCA, which also has locations in Woodbury and Hewlett in Long Island, said the Forest Hills outpost has become so popular that it needed more room to better accommodate its patrons.
“We will reopen in August,” she said, noting that while the menu will remain the same, the restaurant will be remodeled to provide customers with “a high-end experience.”
When it reopens, the restaurant will be approximately 5,000 square feet, about 2,000 square feet larger than its current location, the eatery said.
Last year, the owner of a building housing several restaurants on “Restaurant Row,” including MoCA, announced plans to demolish it to make room for a new 12-story mixed-use development, but the project was halted amid protests among local residents and business owners.
Xiong told DNAinfo New York in February that “the new development is not happening,” prompting MoCA to expand several months later.
It was not immediately clear what, if anything, is coming to the remaining portion of the former Uno Pizzeria space.
The complex has an additional vacant space with a “For Rent” sign, which used to house Santa Fe steakhouse before it closed in 2013.