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Jun 6, 2013 03:34 PM

The best Food Trucks in NYC

Hi All,
My husband and I will be in NYC this Sun-Tues. Though I used to live in Manhattan for years, it was kind of before food trucks became all the rage. We're looking for anything American, Mexican, Greek, or Italian (and sweets) in food trucks; please let me know of anything that you think is amazing! We're staying near Columbus Circle if that helps, though don't be afraid to give me any ones that you think are fantastic b/c we'll probably be traveling all around the city! Thanks so much!

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  1. You might peruse this previous thread for ideas

    Personally, I find most food trucks generally not noteworthy, and many just purely overrated because if they were serving the same food in a brick-and-mortar site you'd be posting here on Chowhound with "How the hell do they get away with serving that crap?"

    1. I can't remember the name of the food truck but they are known for their polish hotdogs.

      1. As far as I know, there are no fantastic food trucks. I personally don't recommend it especially if you are visiting. It is a waste of time.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Monica

          I think this is a little harsh. It is certainly true that the NYC food truck scene, while large, isn't quite as vibrant as some other cities'. And sure, if you step back and think, "What if I was served this at a brick-and-mortar?", many trucks' fare suffer, especially considering the mobile-food tariff.

          But you're not being served the food at a brick-and-mortar, you're getting it a food truck, which many people find refreshing and fun! Especially if it happens to be nice outside (whether it will be when the OP gets here is a whole other issue). It's like Malcolm Gladwell's explanation of the failure of the Pepsi Challenge: even if you actually prefer Pepsi to Coke on a single-sip basis, *that is not how soda is consumed*, and you have to consider the whole experience.

          So, yes, for a pure gastro-tourist, I'd steer them to real restaurants for lunch, but perhaps the OP is interested in quick but tasty options around wherever she might be that day. I think there are certainly food trucks out there that wouldn't disappoint her.

          Solid recommendations? I may not be the best person to ask (for an idea of my taste, my fave recent mobile bite was veal heart from Morocho), but just for some substance...For my money, Coolhaus serves the best ice-cream sandwich in the city, mobile or otherwise. And Calexico's carne asada taco could've been a hipster disaster but actually holds up well next to any of the Roosevelt Ave vendors in Queens.

          1. re: sappidus

            I appreciate sappidus reply, and you are correct, we are looking for something refreshing and fun! Coolhaus looks wonderful and if it's warm and sunny out it may be fun to stop for an ice-cream sandwich (here's to the sun coming out!).

            1. re: slozier

              Check out the previous finalists of the Vendy Awards as a starting point.

        2. I love food trucks. For Greek, Uncle Gussy's (51st and Park) is great. Cinnamon Snail is a vegan food truck that gets a lot of press - haven't tried it but have heard good things (from vegans and carnivores alike). Check Midtown Lunch's Twitter Tracker for trucks that are out and about. I also like Wafels & Dinges - they usually have a cart in Columbus Circle. And Coolhaus for ice cream sandwiches.

          6 Replies
          1. re: EBT

            I tried Uncle Gussy as i work 2 blocks up, couldn't finish the meal. maybe I picked a bad day.
            I've heard good things about cinnamon snails truck...anyway, there are so many excellent places in NYC, i wouldn't recommend any visitors to waste time and money on food truck foods.

            1. re: Monica

              What about the Smorgusburg in Brooklyn? Is that worth going to?

              1. re: slozier

                Search for that on the OuterBoroughs board.

                1. re: slozier

                  when you check the Outer Boroughs board you'll find divided opinions on smorgasburg. We went back recently a few weeks ago, and had an enjoyable experience. There are lots of vendors, many options, and if its a nice day out, a beautiful view.

                  As a visitor i think smorgasburg is a much better option than food trucks, which i appreciate for bringing variety and competition to the busy (but sometimes boring) office lunch and late night scene, but arent necessarily worth seeking out on their own.

                  1. re: tex.s.toast

                    Despite my defense of food trucks, I also think Smorgasburg is a great idea if the day is nice and you're willing to take that much of your limited time to get out there. The beautiful ferry ride from Midtown alone almost makes the trip worth it. You risk big lines/waits if you get there at the wrong time, though.

                    1. re: sappidus

                      I'm actually really eager to try Smorgasburg, it looks so yummy and fun, but we're getting in on Sunday before the theater so I don't think that we'll have time! Bummer but maybe next time!

            2. Definatly look up, they cronicle food trucks obsessively! I second the cinnamon snail rec, and waffles and dinges is a great treat. During your short stay it may not be worth "wasting" a meal on though.....