Ambassador Program

The Ambassador Program has one expert of a cuisine lead a group of people for their 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.

Past Ambassador Programs:
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

Whereas the Jackson Heights Food Group is about the neighborhood, the Ambassador Program is about the food. Now we’re serious. This new adventure may take place anywhere in the city limits and occur at anytime – whatever it takes.

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. Selfishly, there are a lot of cultures I don’t know about, and this seems like an efficient way to learn more and have a good time. I can’t think of a better way of doing this.

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 think this will be fun. The incentive is to party with a large group, order whatever you want, 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. We will have events whenever the time is right (aiming for once every two months or so). The cost to you is your share of the bill plus absorbing the ambassador’s meal with the group.

If you think you are up for this adventure, send me your email. If you want to be an ambassador for a cuisine, answer the questions below and send them to me.

Ambassador Proposal:

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.

These questions are meant to get an idea of what type of experience we can expect with your guidance. It doesn’t matter if your occupation is bank teller or sommelier, if you are from Jersey or Marseille, these questions are meant to get an impression of who you are. If you are knowledgeable and friendly, it will work out fine.

Please fill out the form below and send it to jeffsayyes (at] gmail
Proposed Cuisine:

Preferred Restaurants for the event:
Why would you do a great job leading the group?
Give me an example of what you would order for the group?

Current residence and why:
Favorite restaurants in general:
Anything else you’d like to declare?

Ambassador Wishlist:
Roosevelt Ave Nightlife
Something on Steinway



  1. Hey I couldn’t find your email address and couldn’t find any other way of getting in touch with you. I read your review about the south shore barber shop in massapequa…

    Is Isaac the guy with the station all the way in the back? I was pretty sure that the guy with worked the first chair was the owner.

  2. Isaac is the one who looks the most bad-ass.

  3. love your your website mmmm excellent info. good job!!!!!

  4. (jeffsay)yes! roosevelt ave nightlife. scorpion and cafe 75, here we come!

  5. Ravi, I forgot I had this up there as a special request when you mentioned it to me. We need to get someone in the scene. maybe a bar owner. maybe just one crazy dude. We could be told which ones attract which types of people. 20 places, half a beer in each over 3 hours… could be a fun walk home… wow.

  6. […] 29, 2010 by tarals On Sunday night, Eric and I finally took part in one of Jeff Orlick’s Ambassador dinner groups. I’ve been drooling over the past group dinners but things have always popped up that prevent […]

  7. […] being recruited for my ties to the area. Among other things, I’ve realized the importance of the Ambassador Program, as our Indian ambassador, Joseph Aranha, has been instrumental in convincing the best south Asian […]

  8. please add me to your e-mail. I am interested in going to new restaurants with friendly people.


  9. Fabulous website! I would also be interested to see what is stirring late night on Roosevelt. Please count me in if that one comes to fruition! Also, do we have any ambassadors for Mexican food in the area?

  10. Please put me on your “Ambassador” email list. I would love to be a participant in these dinners.

  11. […] Ambassador Program […]

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