1 comment on “Parked! And Other Food Festivals to Come”

Parked! And Other Food Festivals to Come

This Saturday was the Parked! Food Festival was held at the South Street Seaport, in which food vendors from all over New York City gathered to serve their signature dishes to throngs of hungry New Yorkers. The event has been deemed a successful one by both food truck vendors and customers who attended, remarking that lines were shorter than expected and food came rather quickly. The largest problem at these events in the past has been long waits at the more popular trucks. Some trucks complained about their placement, either on side streets with less traffic or next to direct competition from vendors selling similar products, but in the end every truck said their sales evened out and they did alright by the end of the day. Customers also were able to move between lines quickly and sample many different types of cuisines.

Some new procedures were put into effect this year which may have streamlined the event for customers and vendors. Menu sizes were reduced and orders were taken outside the trucks to maximize efficiency within the truck. All of this bodes well for food truck events, as complaints in the past had decreased their popularity.

With improvements along the way in food truck events, we have many more to look forward to in the coming weeks. All About Downtown is coming to Jersey City on September 17th, featuring ten of New York and New Jersey’s top food trucks. Among these are Korilla BBQ, Luke’s Lobster, Two Pitas in a Pod and Mamma Marci. Then the week after this event is the one we have all ben waiting for, the 2011 Vendy Awards. This year the Vendy’s will be held at Governor’s Island, and you can purchase tickets here.

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

0 comments on “Food Truck Regulation Set to Increase”

Food Truck Regulation Set to Increase

The New York City Council recently proposed a new food truck regulation that would permit a GPS monitoring system to be installed in food trucks, to gain better insight into their patterns of travel throughout the city. These GPS systems would be placed in both food trucks and carts, and aim to find out where food trucks go in reference to parking laws, and to curb pollution and noise.

On the Upper West Side complaints continue to be mounted against trucks, as resident say food trucks clog up the streets, create unwelcome noise and pollute the air. Spearheaded by City Councilwoman Gale Brewer, this GPS proposal aims to regulate exactly how many trucks and carts there are, where they’re located, and whether they are licensed or not. While the City Council supposedly has five different agencies regulating the trucks, complaints claim that only local police seem to be doing anything to enforce laws against these mobile vendors. Particularly on the Upper West Side, complaints have been increasingly rapidly.

This situation goes hand in hand with many of the other pressures food trucks have been dealing with this year, many having been forced out of their usual locations by increased complaints from local brick and mortar businesses. While food trucks may seem unfairly targeted, many New Yorkers are clamoring for the same regulations to be placed on these mobile vendors that have been placed on restaurants. Health codes and licenses should be applied to any food vendor, if not for the sake of equity than for safety concerns. Recently over 1500 health violations were passed on food trucks and carts, ranging from hygiene to meat preparation. Food trucks have been growing to be immensely popular, and ‘gourmet’ trucks are expanding nationwide. If restaurants are held up to rigorous examination, shouldn’t the same be expected of food trucks?

However on implanting GPS trackers in food trucks, a whole new range of issues arises. GPS trackers will help the city gain more information about food trucks, but at what cost? Don’t these trucks have a right to go where they please without being watched? It seems that monitoring their movements may be a direct violation of their constitutional rights. Clearly this is a controversial issue, and chances are a law like this won’t be passed for some time. But as long as it’s being discussed, what manner of regulations will come up next? I invite you to weigh in on this issue and say what you think about the freedom associated with food trucks.

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

0 comments on “‘Ratio’ Food App Simplifies Life in the Kitchen”

‘Ratio’ Food App Simplifies Life in the Kitchen

A food app that came out recently called Ratio, redefines the way we look at recipes from strict measurements to a simple ratio of ingredients metric. The app was designed by Michael Ruhlman, an esteemed journalist and cookbook author. Ruhlman specializes in bringing elaborate culinary art to the home kitchen, and continues this trend with Ratio. The app quantifies cooking through ratios of ingredients rather than specific measurements; for example rather than directing someone to use two eggs and a cup of flower, Ratio would direct the user to cook with three parts flour, two parts eggs. This formula works for a wide variety of recipes, and is especially useful in making batters. In this way the user can utilize a ratio of ingredients to make whatever quantity of a recipe they require, as long as they stick with these basic ratios.

The app itself is very user-friendly, allowing you to save recipes and searches, and even share your updates with others. The app also offers a handy calculator to help you while cooking, with metric conversions available. Ratio app is available for Apple and Android for $4.99.

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

1 comment on “The Great Food Truck Race: Week 1”

The Great Food Truck Race: Week 1

This week The Great Food Truck Race kicked off on the Food Network, as eight gourmet food trucks from across the nation faced off selling their delicious goods in Las Vegas. The eight trucks mostly hail from the West coast; Café con Leche and Sky’s Gourmet Tacos from Los Angeles, San Diego’s Devilicious, Seabirds Food Truck from Costa Mesa, Lime Truck from Irvine, Hodge Podge from Cleveland, Boston’s Roxy Grilled Cheese, and New York’s own Korilla BBQ. Each truck is great in their own right, and watching them go head to head makes me wish none of them had to eliminated. However, every week one team must leave the competition, and this week they all headed to Las Vegas to duke it out in the city of sin. Given a mere $500 to buy all their groceries, the teams were introduced and immediately took to the road.

Before the competition even began one team blew a tire on the road to Vegas. Host Tyler Florence informed the truck that repairs would have to come out of their own $500 budget, giving them a considerable setback early in the competition. The remaining trucks immediately got to work on the road, calling acquaintances in Vegas and planning to setup around festivals and hotspots. However more setbacks awaited the teams once they arrived, as one team immediately learned that the famed Vegas strip was no place for a food truck. Others were forced to relocate due to lack of traffic, and later turf wars developed between several trucks as well. Every episode a “speed bump” is introduced, in which the teams are given a randomly selected handicap. This week they were forced to shut off their propane, effectively halting their cooking. For the vegan Seabirds Truck this turned into more of an advantage than anything, but for trucks that rely on their grills to cook meat, it was much worse. In the end each truck produced some great looking food, and enjoyed moments of greatness and failure. For the trucks that knew the terrain better I would like to see how they fare next week, as they continue moving east. As New York’s only representative, my money is on Korilla BBQ, three Columbia graduates with a killer marinade. Stay tuned for more updates as the race continues on Food Network.

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

0 comments on “Long Island City Lot Opens for Beleaguered Food Trucks”

Long Island City Lot Opens for Beleaguered Food Trucks

The long-awaited food truck lot in Long Island City finally opened this Tuesday, August 9th. Food trucks that have been forced to relocate popular spots throughout New York City have already begun to seek out this refuge, hoping that a large congregation of trucks might attract New Yorkers to this new destination.

The lot itself it 11,000 square feet and privately owned by a company called Rockrose Development. The lot is open for lunch from 11AM until 3PM, attracting all kinds of visitors to its daily trucks. The lot can hold sixteen trucks at a time, and is being monitored by the New York City Food Truck Association to ensure equity. The Association is trying to rotate as many trucks in as possible; however trucks pay the corporation a fee to use the lot during the day. On opening day, the Desi Food Truck, the Rickshaw Truck, Cupcake Stop and others came to the lot. Korilla BBQ, Red Hook Lobster and other trucks arrived the second day. The Long Island Food Truck Lot is on Twitter as well, and you can follow here.

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

3 comments on “Kim’s Aunt Kitchen”

Kim’s Aunt Kitchen

Today I decided to try Kim’s Aunt Kitchen, a small fried food cart with a wide array of options. Kim’s is surrounded by several other food trucks and carts on Avenue of the Americas, but does well for itself with its delicious fried options. Kim’s is another Mexican-Korean fusion trucks, though the bulgogi beef platter seems to be the only truly Korean item on the menu. The rest are fried fish or chicken options, served on a platter with either rice, French fries or lo mein, or simply in sandwich form.

After seeing some sandwiches served, I went with a flounder sandwich on a hero roll, served with a salad topping and white sauce. The fish was delicious, fried to a perfect crisp and soft and flaky on the inside. It had a mild taste to it but that went well with the fried bread and sauce. The sandwich was perfect for eating on the go too, and at only $5, a genuine deal.

For me, Kim’s Aunt Kitchen represented the ideal street food; cheap, fried and delicious. It didn’t hurt that free sample were being given away as well (the bulgogi beef is not as authentic as Bapcha’s). Leaving this crowded spot on Avenue of the Americas I know that there are still many more food trucks to try, but Kim’s Aunt Kitchen left me satisfied enough to wait another day to try the others.

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

0 comments on “Anticipation Builds Up for this Year’s Vendy Awards”

Anticipation Builds Up for this Year’s Vendy Awards

It may be a little early, but here at Foodtoeat we can barely stop talking about the upcoming Vendy Awards. Held on September 24th, The Vendy Awards honor some of New York’s best and most innovative street vendors in an intense cook-off at Governors Island. Finalists in the competition are nominated by everyday people through an online form, and winners are decided in four categories; people’s choice, desserts, rookie of the year and Vendy Cup winner.
                While this competition is only in its sixth year, it’s already spread outside of New York, with the first ever Philadelphia Vendy Awards held earlier this summer. Once the event starts, vendors begin serving up food on Governor’s Islands for guests and judges. The day features a raffle, music, entertainment and plenty of wine and beer. Though an integral part of the experience involves standing in line waiting for food.
                Last year Astoria’s King of Falafel dominated the competition, though every year it seems a different vendor comes out on top. While attendees vote for some of the categories, The Vendy’s esteemed judges decide who wins the grand prize. Proceeds from this event help support the Street Vendor Project, a non-profit organization working for the rights of New York City street vendors. The Street Vendor Project has been actively working to solve the trucks’ legal troubles with the city, and have drafted a petition to allow food trucks to stay in their preferred locations. This organization honors worthy street vendors who have been denied their rights, they rely on donations to continue.
                We may still have some time to wait until the Vendy Awards, but this event is surely not one to be missed. Just think, unlimited food, drinks and entertainment all on an island? Sounds like a vacation to me.
To purchase your tickets to the 2011 Vendy’s click here.
DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com
2 comments on “Quality Korean Food in a Cart”

Quality Korean Food in a Cart

Bapcha food cart is Korean-style vendor on West 49thStreet and Avenue of the Americas. They serve a variety of Korean Barbecued meats, as well as some vegetarian noodle options. Their cart was pricier than I had hoped, but quality Korean food tends to be more expensive than most other New York street food. I ordered a Galbi Box for $8, thin slices of barbecued beef over rice and served with lettuce and egg. The chef drizzled hot sauce over the beef and a sweet type of vinaigrette over the lettuce. The beef was tender and well flavored, and the white rice underneath absorbed a lot of the flavor from the beef. The lettuce was a good choice when paired with the heavy barbecued flavor from the beef, giving the meal a good sense of balance.
The egg portion added an excellent touch of authenticity to the meal, though was blander than I had hoped. The beef easily stole the show, but would have been hard to finish without the other servings. The portion was slightly smaller than I had hoped, with only four or five slices of beef. In the end I was left over with extra rice, but the juices from the beef left it with a savory taste. For $8 I expected more food for the price, but the meal was delicious enough and demonstrated that Bapcha certainly knows it’s Korean food.
To order online from Bapcha click here.
DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com
1 comment on “Eggstravaganza Cart”

Eggstravaganza Cart

             Eggstravaganza Cart is a savory breakfast oasis open when few other vendors have set out or opened their doors. The small cart features Mexican style breakfast food, and seems permanently parked in midtown, on 52nd street. The vendor is perfectly arranged for early risers, as it opens at 4am and stays until 2:30pm, just after the lunch rush. I tried a steak and egg taco and a western omelette, for $4 and $5.25 respectively. The portions were decent but I would have expected slightly more for the cost. The two orders collectively more than filled me up, but individually one order would not have been enough.
             I love salsa with my eggs, and was pleased with the generous portion Eggstravaganza gave me. The salsa was milder than I expected, but accompanied the steak and eggs very well. The tortilla was surprisingly good as well, better than some taco trucks that I have tasted from in the area. Eggstravaganza Cart offers satisfying food in the morning, and opens earlier than the sun rises most days. Though the portions may not be grand, it hits the spot first thing in the morning.
To order online from Eggstravaganza Cart and skip the wait in line, click here.
DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com
1 comment on “The Great Food Truck Race is Kicking Off”

The Great Food Truck Race is Kicking Off

                The Great Food Truck Race is a welcome departure from the standard food network reality show featuring master chefs and elaborate kitchens. The Great Food Truck Race focuses on ‘gourmet’ food trucks, as they are pitted against each other to sell the most lunches and escape weekly elimination. The show offers unexpected insight into the daily lives of mobile food vendors, and travels with them as they travel from coast to coast selling their often unique signature meals. A large portion of the country is still weary at the thought of eating from food trucks, and something this show does well is advertising the true value of mobile food. The chefs who operate these trucks are often professionally acclaimed, and their food is nothing to look down upon.
                Season 2 premieres August 15th on the Food Network, and will feature eight new trucks from around the country. One of these trucks is New York City’s very own Korilla BBQ, though the vast majority is from California. Hosted by famed restaurateur Chef Tyler Florence, the show will certainly kick up some appetites and raise some awareness for gourmet food trucks. We’ll be back with our very own take on the premiere, come two weeks.
 
DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com