Video: El Olomega, the Original Red Hook Pupuseria

Street Food

The best food from the street.

Editor's Note: Welcome to a new episode of 1 Minute Meal, a series of video snapshots documenting the places, people, and foods that make New York a vibrant food community.


Pupusas on the grill at El Olomega, an elder states-vendor at the Red Hook Ball Fields. [Photograph: James Boo]

At the moment, no one can guarantee that the Red Hook food vendors will return next summer to the park they've cooked at for nearly 40 years. The Vendors Association recently completed a proposal process that was first enacted in 2007, and the city's verdict on who will win the rights to vend at the Ball FIelds is still out.

No doom-and-gloom sentiment, however, has swayed Marcos Lainez, whose family has run the city's best pupusa business (and just announced Vendy-finalist) for decades. Serving 18 variants of the Salvadoran staple (including one joyous rendition made from mashed sweet plantains), El Olomega personifies the Red Hook Vendors—a family forged in food at the edge of a soccer field.

Previously on 1 Minute Meal

Lechonera La Piraña in Mott Haven »
The Arepa Lady of Jackson Heights »
The Indonesian Food Bazaar in Astoria, Queens »
The Lemon Ice King of Corona, a Queens Classic »
A Day in the Life of The Baoery, a Pop-Up Restaurant »
Khachapuri, a Georgian Bread Baked into South Brooklyn »
David's Brisket House, the Jewish Deli Run by Muslims in Brooklyn »

About the videographer: James Boo has been a Serious Eats contributor since 2010. Working as a freelance journalist, he is also the founder of Real Cheap Eats and a documentarian. Check out his food-and-travel blog, The Eaten Path, for more journeys to the real meal.