Tag Archives: Clearview Gardens

Whitestone co-op board sues to get rid of pet pig

| mhayes@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

A porky problem is rattling one Whitestone cooperative.

Danielle Forgione lives in the Clearview Gardens co-op with her husband, six kids and their pet pig, Petey.

“He is as gentle as a big, cuddly bear,” Forgione said about her porcine pal.

However, the co-op’s Board of Directors is suing the city’s Health Department, saying they want the pig out, according to unofficial court documents.

In December, co-op officials discovered Petey living on the premises, and after investigating a complaint, the Health Department said the oinker had to go no later than July 1. But, despite putting their condo up for sale in January, the Forgiones haven’t been able to move out.

Since adopting Petey, the family has received several citations from the Health Department, including one stating they “dispose” of their pet. However, Forgione said she has been in contact with the Health Department and that the pig “is here legally.”

“I’m not looking to defy the law,” she said. “We’ve been cooperating with the Health Department. They know he’s here.”

The family picked up Petey after Forgione’s brother, Peter, was killed in a motorcycle accident in March 2012. She was searching for a pet to console her children, but ran into a problem when she discovered their six-year-old son had a pet dander allergy The Courier reported in February.

With that, a pediatrician suggested they consider a pig, and Petey, named after Forgione’s late brother, became part of the family.

But the Board claimed Petey is “dangerous to the public,” and has the potential to bite and scratch other residents in the 1,800-family cooperative, according to unofficial court documents.

They also said the animal is being walked around the common property within Clearview Gardens and has “placed residents in fear.”

Forgione denies those claims and said Petey has never come into contact with anybody else, and that if anything, people ask to take a picture.

Since news of the lawsuit surfaced, Forgione said she has neither been served any papers nor heard from any Clearview Gardens officials. The city Law Department additionally said they have yet to receive the case.

Clearview Gardens management did not return multiple requests for comment as of press time.

In the meantime, Petey will stay with the Forgiones until they can find a more “pig-friendly” home.

Photo via Facebook



Red Chop is tops

| vschneps@queenscourier.com

VICKI 413w

On busy Utopia Parkway near the pretty Clearview Gardens in Whitestone, a newly-designed gem of a restaurant has opened, Red Chop. It offers authentic Sichuan cooking and a sushi bar under the renowned leadership of famous Sichuan cook, chef Shen.

Arriving in Queens with 40 years of experience as a Sichuan cook, chef Shen was born in Chengdu, the capital of the Sichuan province in southwest China. A city of 3.5 million people, it offers endless dining experiences. It’s home to the spicy Chinese cooking that the region is famous for. The secret to great Sichuan cooking is the subtlety of the spices, the blending to achieve a variety of tastes. After dining there I can tell you they are serving deliciously tasty food — hot and spicy, adapted to your taste buds.

Chef Shen comes from a family of chefs and was trained by his father’s side since he was 18. After establishing his own reputation at fine hotels in China he came to America in the late 1990s, working at the finest Manhattan restaurants. Now he is co-owner of Red Chop, and are you in for a treat.

We began our meal with a selection from the soup menu. Although Red Chop offers the usual hot & sour soup and wonton or egg drop soup for $7, we shared a crab meat and asparagus soup that was in an egg drop broth with chunks of the fish. Delicious!

Then we ordered one of chef Shen’s unique dishes, a hand-rolled eggplant enhanced by a delicate Sichuan garlic sauce. It’s not to be missed. Every dish can be prepared to your liking, from mild spicy to very spicy. We went with medium spicy and enjoyed every bite from the plentiful portions.

Another entree, this time from the poultry choices, was a diced chicken with baby shrimp in a Peking sauce. It was perfectly prepared, juicy and fall-off-the-fork tender. From the seafood choices we ate the sauteed flounder with mixed vegetables, also a good choice.

Red Chop has a sushi chef preparing lunch specials and at dinner we had multiple selections from the Red Chop special sushi offering tuna, salmon and yellowtail — an impressive platter that could have been our whole meal.

We had to try the unique dessert choices, fried ice cream, Japanese style fried bananas and an outrageous and not-to-be-missed banana split!

Red Chop boasts multiple lunch specials Monday to Friday served with white or vegetable fried rice and a choice of spring roll, soup or soda, all for the small sum of $6.50. They even deliver, so having lunch here is cheaper than cooking at home and oh so delicious. And I must tell you, Wendy, the manager, is there to greet you and made us feel so welcome I can’t wait to return. Try it, you will love it!


Red Chop

20-02 Utopia Parkway




Hours: Monday through Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.; Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.; Saturday, 12:30 to 11:30 p.m.; Sunday, 1 to 10:30 p.m.

Major credit cards accepted

Wheelchair accessible

Red Chop on Urbanspoon