A Look at New York's 2011 Vendy Awards
This year's Vendy Awards—the competition extraveganza of food vendors—was bigger and better than ever. We've summarized all of the finalists that were dishing out their goods this past Saturday below, and of course you can also find out who the big winners were.
Don't forget to click though to the slide show to get a look at all the delicious eats!
BEST OF NJ FINALISTS
In the spirit of spreading the Vendy love around beyond our own city borders, this year three trucks were invited to compete for the best of New Jersey award. (Last year Philly was given a category, and this year hosted their own Vendys. Perhaps New Jersey is next...?)
The nominated vendors were:
The Taco Truck
Tacos, of course, and other Mexican eats.
Where to find them: Rotates between Hoboken, Jersey City and Newark, NJ
Lunch, Tuesday-Thursday, 11:30am-2:30pm
Two Pitas in a Pod
These guys specialize in "Mediterranean Eats 'n Frites" as well as fusion specials from around the world.
Where to find them: Hoboken, Newark, and Jersey City
The Cinnamon Snail
Veterans of the 2010 Vendys, these guys are all about unique and creative organic all-vegan food, not to mention they boasted some of the best outfits. I'm guessing the above photo is them making their "please vote for us" faces.
Where to find them: Hoboken-waterfront, as close to the train station as they can find parking.
Breakfast and Brunch Thursday -Sunday, 9:00 A.M. -3:00 P.M.
Lunch Thursday -Sunday, 11:30 A.M. -3:00 P.M.
BEST DESSERT FINALISTS
Fany Gerson's Mexican paletas (ice pops) come is an array of delicious and exotic flavors, such as this mango pop, which you can sprinkle with chili salt.
Where to find them: The High Line, Hester Street Market, and various shops.
Wooly's serves Taiwanese and Hawaiian shaved ice, which is then dressed in a variety of toppings.
Where to find them: In front of 79 Elizabeth Street.
In much the same genre as that pioneered by Big Gay Ice Cream Truck, Miss Softee covers her soft-serve in all sorts of crazy and delightful toppings.
Where to find them: Out and about in Midtown Manhattan (Twitter: @hi_im_chrissy)
La Bella Torte
Definitely wins for best tag line. La Bella Torte makes not only cannolis, but other Italian desserts and baked goods as well.
Where to find them: The Lot at the Highline.
The Cupcake Crew
Mini cupcakes is their game. Need we say more?
Where to find them: All over, check their Twitter account @cupcakecrewnyc
ROOKIE VENDOR FINALISTS
We already know and love Taim for having some of the best falafel in NYC, so who wouldn't love a truck full of their falafel roaming the city?
Where to find them: Check twitter.com/taimmobile
Eat Here Now Now Eat Here
Serving up tacos and burritos with a twist, including a pretty killer fish taco.
Where to find them: Manhattan Mon-Fri at Tenth Ave and 16th St, and weekends at Hudson Street at W. 12th.
Speaking of tacos, Korilla's Korean tacos were incredibly popular, with one of the longest lines at the Vendys. Their tacos feature Korean BBQ, kimchi, and their own special sauces.
Where to find them: Check twitter.com/KorillaBBQ
Eddie's Pizza Truck
Super-thin crust pizza in personal 10" pies, based on the original Eddie's Pizza in New Hyde Park, Long Island.
Where to find them: Check twitter.com/EddiesPizzaNY
Comme Ci Comme Ça
Comme Ci Comme Ça cooks up traditional Moroccan food, specializing in fluffy couscous with meats and vegetables.
Where to find them: Check @chefsamirtruck
Super-authentic Jamaican food is what brings people to Sunrise Grill. They offer oxtail, curry goat, jerk chicken and much more, all with with plenty of flavor and spice.
Where to find them: St. Nicholas Avenue and 168th Street
THE VENDY CUP FINALISTS
Chimichury El Malecon
Their specialty here are "Chimis", which are Dominican-style hamburgers served on Portuguese rolls. They're distinctly different from American hamburgers, but comparable in deliciousness.
Where to find them: West 207th Street and Sherman Avenue.
Veteran finalists from the 2008 Vendy Awards, Solber Pupusas is known far and wide for their traditional Salvadoran corn patties & other Central American and Caribbean specialties.
Where to find them: Brooklyn Flea, Smorgasburg, Red Hook ball fields, Brooklyn.
Last year's Rookie Award winner was back! And still serving the delicious fresh Greek pita wraps that skyrocketed them into Vendy fame. The lines may have been long, but they had this awesome guy brought over from Greece just to serenade the line as they waited:
Where to find them: Old Slip & Front Streets
Sam's falafel is said to be the best in Financial District, with a strong following of falafel-goers.
Where to find them: Cedar St and Broadway, Manhattan.
Guadalupe Galicia, a single mother of 5, is loved for her handmade traditional and Oaxacan tamales in Brooklyn.
Where to find them: Knickerbocker & DeKalb Avenues, Brooklyn.
This Midtown breakfast cart serves specialties such as Mexican wrap and egg sandwiches, and grilled cheese with chorizo and bacon.
Where to find them: 52nd Street & Park Avenue
Trini-Paki Boys Halal Food
Unfortunately they weren't able to make it to the Vendy Awards, but they were still recognized as official nominees. Check out their Trinidadian/Pakistani cart at 43rd Street & 6th Avenue.
And now.... what you've all been waiting for.....
From left to right: Esteemed Southern food writer John T. Edge, chef-owner of Back Forty Peter Hoffman, Café Boulud Executive Chef Gavin Kaysen, Managing Editor of CNN's food blog Eatocracy Kat Kinsman, the host of the awards: Sunny Anderson of Food Network's Cooking for Real, Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito, comedian Colin Quinn, and this year's Citizen Judge, Zeina Muna.
The First-Ever Vendy Hero Award
This year the Vendy's gave a special hero award to Paty's Tacos for fighting for vendors against the unfair ticketing and towing they endured. With the help of the Street Vendor Project, Paty's filed a lawsuit against New York City, standing up for the rights of all NYC street vendors.
Paty's received the award from Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito (right), as well as Sean Basinksy, founder of the Street Vendor Project (left).
Best of New Jersey
The Taco Truck took away the New Jersey award, and their tasty tacos certainly earned it.
Maker's Mark Challenge
More New Jersey love was shown when The Cinnamon Snail won for best dish using official sponsor Maker's Mark's bourbon whiskey with their all-vegan vanilla bourbon creme brulee doughnuts.
Woolys and their Taiwanese-Hawaiian shaved ice took best dessert!
Rookie of the Year
Korilla proudly took the Rookie of the Year award for their awesome Korean tacos.
People's Taste Award
Last year's Rookie winner Souvlaki GR did it again, stealing the hearts and stomachs of the people and winning this year's People's Taste Award.
And the Vendy Cup goes to......
Solber Pupusas! Everyone loved their food (if the epic lines were any indication) and they were clearly elated to finally earn the grand prize.