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The Butcher Block, a Sunnyside Institution, to Expand on to Queens Blvd


July 20, 2016 By Christian Murray

The traditional Irish supermarket Butcher Block is expanding onto Queens Boulevard, taking over the space that had been previously been occupied by Pure Spa & Salon.

The Butcher Block, located at 43-46 41st St., is connected to Pure’s former 40-15 Queens Blvd location through the rear of the store. Pure relocated to the CityView Racquet Club in Long Island City in November.

“There is going to be an entrance on Queens Boulevard and one on 41st Street,” said Noel Gaynor, who founded and owns the Butcher Block with Mike Roche. The pair opened the well-known Sunnyside store in 1995.

Expansion to Queens Blvd

Expansion to Queens Blvd

The architectural plans have yet to be drawn up and Gaynor said that he was unable to provide a date when the expansion would be complete.

Gaynor, who is from County Mayo, said they plan to create a bigger kitchen and hot food display area as well as offer more vegetables and groceries.

“Business is good and we have been selling a lot of groceries,” Gaynor said. “We need more space.”

The store is best known for its long counter that sells a vast range of meats, including house-cured bacon, corned beef, spare ribs and blood sausages.

It also offers prepared items, such as shepherd’s pie, chicken pot pies, roast beef, rotisserie chicken and sausage rolls, with sides such as mashed potatoes, peas and carrots. Then there are the sandwiches. (see menu)Butcherblock2

The Butcher Block also imports Irish/British chocolates, butter, bread, baked beans, tea, newspapers, potato chips and biscuits/cookies.

Gaynor estimates that about 30 percent of their customers are Irish. The other 70 percent are from a range of different backgrounds, he said.

“You’ll get the taxi driver coming in and buying sausage rolls,” he said. “Then there are some people who visited Ireland once, and now come here.”

The Butcher Block was not always in its present location. It had been located on the south side of Queens Boulevard (between 41st and 42nd Streets) until a massive fire in 2003 destroyed the store along with a number of restaurants.

Gaynor and Roche were fortunate in that they were able to find the space they are in now just months after the fire.

Fire in 2003

Fire in 2003


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Geraldine Walsh

I can’t imagine how individuals would express such negativity. As a first generation Irish-American I experienced the poverty, my mother would send my sister and I for the summer, no hot water, initially not even an outhouse. I treasured every moment I spent and spend there. Irish cuisine may not be the most popular but I love it and am so grateful to have a store specializing in Irish products; actually more Irish than in shops in Ireland. The tendency is to love the food of your culture, no matter how awful it might sound to others.
Still can’t do the puddins. Wish you made boiled boxty, yes, it is labor intensive but worth it. My mother was from Leitrim, how I learned how to make it. I am in Manhattan, a friend in Woodside who will get whatever I want.
Also, wish you had rhubarb, unless you do, not in pie, but stewed atop Bird’s custard.


-El loco That’s why the Butcher Block was only in business since 1995….your post is absurd.

cats, too many cats

i miss blooms, this was a gorgeous pub. glad to see these guys are doing well and back on queens blvd!

Silent majority

Blooms bar was magnificent all wood imported from Ireland. Its a shame it was destroyed.

Patricia Dorfman

So happy to hear of SMALL BIZ, long-time sunnyside chamber of commerce member, expanding and flourishing! just a few things i like about butcher block

• buy irish bacon instead of pancetta to make pasta carbonara (1/4 the cost)
• cute irish construction guys buying lunch
• you can feed two people with one entrée
• their huge UK candy and chips collection is the best in the united states
• they are a reason sunnyside is a destination in the tri-state area
• mashed turnips and carrots
• bell and evans chicken
• fresh bread flown in from ireland
• kind, fair, honest owners, long-term staffers


Love the Butcher Block, the staff and the food! Irish people know how to make a business thrive! Good Luck mates!

El loco

Yo D-Mo. I love ya but I disagree with you. I’ve never eaten anything there that liked. I think the food is lousy. Net negative if you ask me.


I’m usually in there more than once a week. Glad to hear they’re doing well enough for this expansion to make sense, and I look forward to seeing what new things they offer as a result.


Unfortunately, Butcher Block doesn’t accept EBT/SNAP, so many Sunnysiders can’t afford to shop there, even though they may wish to.


-roxy that may be a good thing….Now they have something to stride for and an incentive to improve their financial situations.

Dorothy Morehead

The absolutely best pork chops I have ever eaten I bought at Butcher Block. Good luck with the expansion, mates. I’ll be there.

Save the Robots

I’m a regular and glad to see this.

In terms of the hot food, I do hope that they give some thought to expanding the side dishes: Those peas and carrots and mashed potatoes are getting mighty old…


The best news … Nice to hear someone is expanding and not leaving ..
Good luck men ..

Tom in Sunnyside

Love this place and am so glad they are doing so well that they need (and have the opportunity) to expand!

Dan curtin

I was a patron for many years I moved to South Carolina but very time iam in N Y I go to the block to restock my freezer Now I have people giving me orders to bring goodies back down when I go north


Look how crappy that corner was before fire, and now after fire we have a CVS, a nice looking restaurant, nice looking apartment building (although low life piece of sh*t people tagged the glass). Anyone who complains about the improvements in sunnyside and those who hate “chain” stores, should move to south west end of Astoria, they might like the ghetto neighborhoods better.

Oh, good luck to the butcher store, hopefully they will increase the variety.


Crappy ? The Brau Hall then The Orchard then Blooms were all nice restaurants that were in business for many years all 3 with beautiful facades. We can tell your a low information new bee blowhard. The only problem people have with change is the influx of uninformed blowhards like you.

Sunnyside OG

I wasn’t around for The orchard, but Blooms was a great, friendly place before it burnt down. How is a crappy CVS (arguably the drugstore with the worst service in the area), serve as a good replacement? ‘me’ the jerk doesn’t know what the hell hes talking about.

Silent majority

May I disagree the worst customer service is Rite aid on Greenpoint and 46th st. Quite arguably the worst drugstore from the employees to the Pharmacy to the managers how let people walk out with shoplifted items daily.


Excellent news! I love Butcher Block and I’m so glad that they’re continuing to do well as the neighborhood changes.


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