I attended the Vendy Awards in Dumbo for the first time today. It was definitely a good time - lively atmosphere and lots of good food. The weather did turn quite cold toward the end of the day.
The vendors were Kwik-meal (Bangladeshi), Biryani Cart (ditto), Fauzia's Heavenly Delights (Jamaican), Soler (Dominican) and Calexico (Mexican.) Three dessert trucks also showed up - Dessert Truck, Treats Truck, and that artisanal ice cream truck with the Dutch name that I can never spell.
All in all, I thought most of the food was delicious. For pure satisfaction, for me it was a tossup between Biryani Cart and Fauzia's. Fauzia's had the most delicious jerk chicken - peppery, complex and falling off the bone - along with tasty rice and peas and cabbage. Upon request they served a bracingly spicy cup of hot ginger tea which was much appreciated. They also served mock chicken, grilled chicken and grilled fish (I never got to taste the fish as it was always "on the way." Biryani Cart served a heaping plate - fantastic chicken tikka, a yummy kati roll and a nice side of chicken biryani. the green sauce I added was very spicy and cilantro-y (these are both good things.) The chef and his family took clear pride in their wonderful food. I'd love to go to a restaurant run by this chef.
I have to confess that I did not have Soler Dominican as I've already had those toothsome pupusas many times. They were apparently just serving the pork and cheese and loroco. They passed out horchata on line (horchata always tastes to me like the milk left over in your cereal bowl)
Kwik-Meal served their falafel, lamb and chicken sandwiches. I had never had Kwik-Meal before and I was very disappointed to learn that their white sauce was cream-based. Did not enjoy for this reason.
Calexico's line was painfully long and slow. They served a very varied plate - two small tacos, one steak, the other pork; a section of shrimp quesadilla, and a slice of chicken tamale daubed with mole sauce. Fixings like radishes, peppers and excellent corn chips were available for the asking. I found this food pretty good though I was not overly impressed - did not like the avocado sludge in the mini-steak taco and was surprised that the chipotle sauce looked to be sour cream-ish.
Dessert Truck offered a sublime chocolate bread pudding and a mini-shot of hot chocolate. That was the only dessert I ate.
All in all, a good day. I disagree with the selection of Calexico as the Vendy winner, but congratulate them and all the other contestants who served us delicious food.
Agreed--it was a wonderful time. I was also a little surprised that the judges picked Calexico, although I thought their food was quite good. I just think that I would have given the edge to the Biryani Cart, the Pupusas or Kwik Meal. I thought all three were outstanding, and the Biryani cart did in fact win the people's choice award...
I too was a bit dissapointed with the choice of Calexico. And I thought the jerk chicken was the best jerk chicken I have ever tasted, Beneath the heat their was a subtle tasty flavor.however I am no expert on jerk chicken. But I also thought the I Briyani Cart. chicken was wonderful
This is the second Vendy award that I attended and I really had a blast.