Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Top 10: Best Food Trucks in New York City

Remember when Halal carts and Mr. Softee trucks were the only food vendors you saw lining the streets? Now, food trucks have made such a name for themselves, they have an entire awards ceremony. These mobile munchie machines have exploded onto the streets of NYC, serving up every cuisine imaginable, from dim sum to dinges (to go with your waffles, natch).

Over the next 10 weeks leading up to the 7th Annual Vendy Awards, we will give you a sneak peek into our favorite trucks in all the land (well, the land of Manhattan) and hopefully this will persuade you to not only stalk out these trucks, but toplace your vote for your favorite mobile biteVoting ends FRIDAY, JULY 29th so vote away and tell your friends!

We've done the leg work for you and found the top 10 most delicious food trucks that are so good, sometimes we take a subway...in July...in order to catch them at a prime lunch or dinner location.

We know we left off some perennial favorites, but picking just ten trucks is no easy task. We judged on food quality/awesomeness, inventiveness, cleanliness of the trucks (oh yes, we inspected) Twitter following (hey, Forbes Magazine did it) and reliability, meaning when they say they are going to be there, they are there. Follow these mobile culinary bastions on Twitter for updates on where they will park their deliciousness on the daily.

1. Korilla BBQ - @KORILLABBQ

FoodTruckFact: The cool dudes behind Korilla BBQ are friends from back in the day, growing up together in Queens and Long Island. They went to college at Columbia University and Penn State, then came back and got to cookin'! Apparently, despite their enormous success and upcoming appearance on The Food Network's The Great Food Truck Race premiering Sunday, August 14th at 10pm, their traditional Korean parents still wish they had taken the traditional doctor/lawyer route. Our taste buds are really glad they didn't! VIDEO: Korilla grillmaster Alton "Altoidz" Chang shows us how he grills us a Ribeye of the Tiger!

2. Taim Mobile - @TaimMobile

FoodTruckFact: It's a husband-and-wife team! Co-owner Stefan Nafziger and his wife and chef of Taim and Balaboosta, Einat Admony, still keep the romance alive between the two restaurants and the Taim-mobiles. Talk about having it all! Their falafel is some of the best we've had outside of the streets of Tel Aviv and will even make a foodie-novice fall in love with a food they can't even pronounce.

3. Sweetery NYC - @SweeteryNYC

FoodTruckFact: The Nutella coconut macaroon (you MUST try it!) was conceptualized when President & Co-Founder Grant Di Mille wanted to introduce chocolate macaroons to the truck, but it was just too hot inside his bakery on wheels to turn out the quality product that Sweetery NYC is known for. So, his lovely wife and the chief baker behind the operation, Samira Mahboubian, flattened the macaroon and spread gooey Nutella inside; problem solved! HEAVEN ON WHEELS.

4. The Frying Dutchmen -  @Frying_Dutchmen
FoodTruckFact: Owners/Youngsters Ben Goldberg, 23, and Jacob Davenport, 20 skipped cubicle life in Midtown and headed straight to the streets to serve up the best thing that every happened to the potato; the French Fry. They enlisted the expertise of former BRAVO Top Chef contestant aka "I'm not your b*tch, b*$ch!" Dave Martin as the Consulting Executive Chef. We guarantee Dave is bringing lots of flavor to this spud truck!

5. Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream@VLAIC

FoodTruckFact: The delicious artisan ice cream creations started churning in 2007 out of a Greenpoint, Brooklyn kitchen. Benjamin and Peter Van Leeuwen and their Aussie roommate, Laura O'Neill would invite their friends over to try their creative concoctions and soon enough, they were on the road serving up sweet treats to the masses. Check out the Palm Sugar flavor that tastes like dulce de leche, made with coconut palm sugar from Bali, Indonesia. Conventional ice cream? We think not.

6. Bistro Truck - @BistroTruck

FoodTruckFact: The smells from the glorious streets of Morocco have wafted to the streets of NYC. The roasted lamb over couscous will force you to put their pre-order number on your speed-dial. Oh, it's 1-800-290-4924. And for those that hate the phone (everyone born after 1986), you can order through their website, too.

7. Frites 'n' Meats @fritesnmeats

FoodTruckFact: These burger boys will return to the streets in August after a four month hiatus due to a horrible accident on the West Side Highway that caused one of the propane tanks to explode and consequently, the truck went up in flames. However, we have a feeling their second act will be even more tasty then their first. What to order? Try the Maker's Mark Kobe Burgers. You won't believe you are paying $8 for one of these bad boys.

8. Souvlaki GR - @souvlakitruck

FoodTruckFact: A souvlaki is not a gyro and don't let anyone tell you differently. The difference? The ingredients in souvlaki, including meat and veggies, are grilled on a skewer then amazing sauces and other magical things are added to make the gyro look, well, not as good as a souvlaki. It was the Vendy Awards Rookie of the Year in 2010 and it's vying for the top spot as the 2011 Best Food Truck.

9. Rickshaw Dumplings -  @RickshawTruck

FoodTruckFact: Back in the day, Co-Founder Kenny Lau sold dumplings out of his truck at farmer's markets in New Hampshire. Dumpling legend has it he has been known to eat more than 40 dumplings...in one sitting. Awesome.

10. Kelvin Natural Slush -  @KELVINSLUSH

FoodTruckFact: Do not even think to compare this to a Slurpee, because it's just way too high class for that! Even though founder and former lawyer Alex Rein loved a Super Big Gulp of a frozen beverage growing up, he made his own version and New York-ified it. Meaning, these city slicker slushies are all-natural and inventive. Last year, they won Best Dessert at the Vendy Awards, but we think it should be up for the Grand Prize! Check out refreshing flavors like Spicy Ginger and Black Tea. Cooled off yet?

Is your favorite not on this list? Are you voting for a different truck this year to take home a coveted Vendy? We think our top 10 represent gourmet genius on wheels, but let us know what you think! Post a comment below and tell us about some trucks that might be off our radar.


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