It’s often difficult to pinpoint when an area begins to gentrify, but with Rockaway Beach, it all comes back to Rockaway Taco, a popular Mexican spot that opened three years ago in a modified wooden shack. Once a glimmering beach resort town, Rockaway Beach became increasingly gritty in the years since World War II, when housing projects engulfed the destination to which rich Manhattanites had previously flocked. Now, the rest of New York seems to be paying attention to Rockaway again.

This year, following the success of Rockaway Taco and the amount of media attention (twoTimes stories in as many weeks) it has received, a bevy of new food options have debuted at the beach. From classic pad thai to fried oyster po-boy, to vegan sweets from Manhattan bakery Babycakes, there is something for everyone.

Last weekend, The Feast applied a healthy amount of sunblock, broke out the flip flops, and hopped on the A train to Far Rockaway to explore this new culinary movement. Sift through the results in our slide show. [thefeast.com]