A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal

Author
Ketteract
Double Chili Cheeseburger
  • Total Posts : 1072
  • Joined: 2011/10/09 23:10:00
  • Location: Hartford, CT
  • Status: offline
2018/03/04 21:34:43 (permalink)

A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal

A few Saturdays ago, I went to NYC and back in the same day. Holy god was that exhausting, and not something I'll repeat. Minimum one-night stay from now on. Dinner while I was there was at a generally unremarkable Thai place (not my call), but I was determined to get something a little more NYC-specific out of the day ... so, uh, here's one of the two food carts in front of Grand Central.
 

 
I couldn't identify everything that was there - the three leftmost items eluded me. Those pretzels stacked in the upper right were also on display outside. I wondered how often people bought them.
 

 
(That pic is from when I got in around noon; the others are from when I left at night.) I was going to get a hot dog until I saw that they didn't have an onions-and-tomato-sauce topping, so I settled for chicken and rice.
 

 
Damn tasty, I'll give it that. I ate it on the Metro North ride back to New Haven at 2 am.
 

 
Next time, I'll have a saner schedule, and I'm going to damn well get a proper NYC dog!
post edited by Ketteract - 2018/03/04 21:37:25
#1

10 Replies Related Threads

    BuddyRoadhouse
    Sirloin
    • Total Posts : 6284
    • Joined: 2004/12/10 20:06:00
    • Location: Des Plaines, IL
    • Status: offline
    Re: A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal 2018/03/05 00:40:47 (permalink)
    After blowing up the image, it appears the items stacked on top of the foam container are knishes.  Based on the difference in color, I'll guess some are meat filled and the others potato.  At first, I thought the items furthest to the left were tamales, but upon closer inspection, they look more like fat sausages with the ends tied off.  In fact, it just occurred to me, we buy Usinger's Sauerkraut in chubs that look very similar to those.  Maybe that's his spare kraut for the hot dogs.  If he doesn't have the onion sauce, he damn well better have kraut.
     
    Buddy
    #2
    leethebard
    Sirloin
    • Total Posts : 9531
    • Joined: 2007/08/16 17:35:00
    • Location: brick, NJ
    • Status: offline
    Re: A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal 2018/03/05 04:36:10 (permalink)
    You can get almost any thing these days from food carts in New York.Most of it is quite good.
    #3
    billyboy
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 2916
    • Joined: 2005/01/23 02:28:00
    • Location: New York City, NY
    • Status: offline
    Re: A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal 2018/03/05 21:01:57 (permalink)
    Ketteract, I think that the square items on the top left of the styrofoam container are knishes but the yellowish ones on the right might be Jamaican meat patties.  I've been here 15 years and still have yet to try one.  Not sure why.  The meat-on-a-stick to the right of the styrofoam container?  I have no idea.  I haven't eaten a kebab from a cart in years.  I've found them to be lesser cuts of meat that are chewy and gristly and after a few disappointments I decided to save my money.  I feel the same way about street cart pretzels.  They smell really good but usually end up being somewhat stale and crumbly.  As ubiquitous as street cart pretzels are, I'll wait until my next trip to Philly to get my  warm, soft pretzel fix.  Not sure what those are on the far left but I think Buddy is right about them being sausages.  
     
    Chicken & rice is usually a good dish from the halal carts.  I used to work the 12 midnight to 8am shift on 52nd Street just a 2-block walk from 53rd & 6th Halal Guys cart and while not the BEST I've ever had, it certainly scratched that light night itch.  They're open from 7pm to 4am and definitely get a lot of business from cab drivers, club kids who need something to soak up the booze after last call, power company workers, cops and people like me working the graveyard shift.  
     
    For NYC dogs, you've got Papaya King, Gray's Papaya, Katz's, Crif Dogs, Nathan's, and Feltman's of Coney Island.  I can take or leave a street cart hot dog but it almost is a rite of passage when visiting.  NYC in one day can be long and tiring.  My family sometimes drives down from Syracuse on Sunday, take the Metro North commuter rail in from Poughkeepsie, we see a Broadway musical (matinee), have an early dinner, they take the Metro North back to Poughkeepsie and then drive home in the same day.  They're pretty spent the next morning!  If you're interested, I'd like to tag along and show you around to some of my favorite places next time you're in NYC.  Just shoot me a PM.  
    #4
    chicagostyledog
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 3633
    • Joined: 2003/09/10 16:13:00
    • Location: Hot Dog University Chicago, IL
    • Status: offline
    Re: A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal 2018/03/06 21:52:37 (permalink)
    I have a few concerns with this food cart: uncovered, exposed, food and a server not wearing gloves. Just saying, what I see. What I don't see could be worse(the legal hot holding temperature of the food being served).
    CSD
     
    #5
    masarapba
    Junior Burger
    • Total Posts : 6
    • Joined: 2018/02/14 22:56:28
    • Status: offline
    Re: A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal 2018/03/07 01:21:47 (permalink)
    Looks really tasty! What's the price range of their food?
    #6
    leethebard
    Sirloin
    • Total Posts : 9531
    • Joined: 2007/08/16 17:35:00
    • Location: brick, NJ
    • Status: offline
    Re: A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal 2018/03/07 04:00:16 (permalink)
    chicagostyledog
    I have a few concerns with this food cart: uncovered, exposed, food and a server not wearing gloves. Just saying, what I see. What I don't see could be worse(the legal hot holding temperature of the food being served).
    CSD
     


    Don't think I've ever sen a worker wearing gloves at a food cart..anywhere. In the 50's my mom wouldn't let me have pushcart hot dogs in NYC because she said the men never washed their hands. Today, you can get almost anything from one of those trucks, and mom's words ring in my ear, I eat at them,but I still hear those words, and wonder. Do they wash their hands????
    post edited by leethebard - 2018/03/07 04:02:03
    #7
    Root-Beer Man
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1448
    • Joined: 2006/01/09 00:14:00
    • Location: Noblesville, IN
    • Status: offline
    Re: A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal 2018/03/07 10:32:10 (permalink)
    leethebard
    chicagostyledog
    I have a few concerns with this food cart: uncovered, exposed, food and a server not wearing gloves. Just saying, what I see. What I don't see could be worse(the legal hot holding temperature of the food being served).
    CSD
     


    Don't think I've ever sen a worker wearing gloves at a food cart..anywhere. In the 50's my mom wouldn't let me have pushcart hot dogs in NYC because she said the men never washed their hands. Today, you can get almost anything from one of those trucks, and mom's words ring in my ear, I eat at them,but I still hear those words, and wonder. Do they wash their hands????


    Do you think the same thing at a sit down restaurant? I cannot remember ever wearing gloves when I worked back of the house in restaurants. Sure, we washed our hands, when necessary, but it sure wasn't as often as some people might think. Lots of bare hands are touching your food on the way from the kitchen to your table. I've never had an issue with eating off a cart, in the US and the back alleys of the the rest of the world. The two times I've ever had food poisoning were from McDonald's. A pretty sanitary place, all in all.
    post edited by Root-Beer Man - 2018/03/07 14:28:49
    #8
    Ivyhouse
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 373
    • Joined: 2006/03/27 16:44:00
    • Location: Bethesda, MD
    • Status: offline
    Re: A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal 2018/03/07 10:51:25 (permalink)
    The food cart worker in the picture is wearing a plastic glove on his left hand, but not on his right hand.  Is that because the plastic glove would melt when it is close proximity to the cooking surface?
    #9
    Ketteract
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1072
    • Joined: 2011/10/09 23:10:00
    • Location: Hartford, CT
    • Status: offline
    Re: A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal 2018/03/09 17:13:31 (permalink)
    billyboy
    Chicken & rice is usually a good dish from the halal carts.  I used to work the 12 midnight to 8am shift on 52nd Street just a 2-block walk from 53rd & 6th Halal Guys cart and while not the BEST I've ever had, it certainly scratched that light night itch.  They're open from 7pm to 4am and definitely get a lot of business from cab drivers, club kids who need something to soak up the booze after last call, power company workers, cops and people like me working the graveyard shift.  
     
    For NYC dogs, you've got Papaya King, Gray's Papaya, Katz's, Crif Dogs, Nathan's, and Feltman's of Coney Island.  I can take or leave a street cart hot dog but it almost is a rite of passage when visiting.  NYC in one day can be long and tiring.  My family sometimes drives down from Syracuse on Sunday, take the Metro North commuter rail in from Poughkeepsie, we see a Broadway musical (matinee), have an early dinner, they take the Metro North back to Poughkeepsie and then drive home in the same day.  They're pretty spent the next morning!  If you're interested, I'd like to tag along and show you around to some of my favorite places next time you're in NYC.  Just shoot me a PM.  




    Yeah, there are a fair number of halal restaurants around Connecticut that do meat-and-rice, and some are better than others, but it seems to be one of those dishes that's just so inherently tasty that it's hard to find a place that does it badly. I did also try the Halal Guys brick-and-mortar restaurant in New Haven some months back. It was good, even memorable, but obviously not the same as a NYC cart either in cooking facilities or overall experience. (And honestly, when I'm in New Haven, I tend to be there for, well, pizza.)
     
    My two experiences with NYC hot dogs are (1) an unnamed cart waaaay back in like 2005 (all I remember is that it had onions and tomato sauce, it was delicious, and that the friend I was with verbally chastised me, saying she wouldn't be surprised if I got food poisoning), and (2) a glance at a "Papaya Dog" on the way back from another friend's apartment some years later. I definitely want to go back again and do it right... which also describes how I'd like to do NYC itself. For having lived in CT six years now, I feel like I haven't taken sufficient advantage of NYC. I mean, I've been there in an incidental manner on short visits, but I've never deliberately dedicated a few days to roaming around and soaking it in, with or without a focus on food. Which isn't to say that I'm totally unfamiliar with its foodscape (heck, I managed to get to Lombardi's back in 2005), but for Pete's sake, I live less than three hours away. I have no excuse!
    post edited by Ketteract - 2018/03/09 17:14:34
    #10
    leethebard
    Sirloin
    • Total Posts : 9531
    • Joined: 2007/08/16 17:35:00
    • Location: brick, NJ
    • Status: offline
    Re: A food cart in front of Grand Central Terminal 2018/03/09 17:53:27 (permalink)
    Agree with everything you said, except 2005 is "way Back" To us oldsters that was yesterday!
    #11
    Jump to:
    © 2018 APG vNext Commercial Version 5.5