Chowing Down at ESPN’s World Cup Truck (Which is Back in Midtown Today)
Last week we told you about the ESPN Match Truck that would be traveling around NYC serving food designed by Kogi, the famous West coast Korean/Mexican food trucks. The truck has been traveling around the city (including stops in Brooklyn & NJ) serving up food and broadcasting soccer matches on a big screen TV… and today they’re back in Columbus Circle. They started serving food at 9 AM (they have some breakfast items) and they’ll stay there through lunch (until 5pm) serving up food with Kogi and World Cup influences. We decided to check out what they have to offer.
For lunch they have a carne asada burrito, sliders, bunny chow, seared rice balls, lamb gyro, and yaki mandoo dumplings. The rice balls and the dumplings are appetizer sized and are priced at $4, but the other stuff goes for $6 and up. I started it off with some of the dumplings. For four bucks you get three dumplings drizzled with light soy. The mandoo look nothing like what you get at Mandoo Bar on 32nd street, and more closely resemble a pan fried pierogi. They’re wide and flat, with a ground pork filling that had some white stuff interspersed (probably tofu?) The redeeming factor about these dumplings was that they were fairly large as far as dumplings go. Each one is probably twice as filling as a dumpling from Rickshaw- and a double order could even make a meal for $7.
The carne asada burrito featured skirt and flank steak with garlic, cilantro, pinto beans, and a tomatillo-based salsa verde. You can see from the picture that the burrito is not one of those giant-ass things that bust your gut- but it makes up for the lack of size with depth of flavor… and I’m talking about “cilantro and lime rice” either! In other words, this burrito beats the hats off of Chipotle any day. Hands down. The quality of the meat is also better. And this is $6 with tax included so really, you’re getting a $5.52 burrito. Where the hell else are you getting a deal like that?
If you prefer breakfast, Blondie tried out the huevos rancheros and had this to say:
“The huevos rancheros were caliente spicy, and this is a definite option for those of us needing quick breakfast ideas. I’m no huevos rancheros expert, so I can’t say if they’re authentic or not, but I liked this and may have to get some as a hangover cure. I’m a little pissed that there’s no Kogi items, but psyched that I can go watch the World Cup and eat lunch at the same time. If only they served beer.”
Hear hear to that! The live soccer stream is amazing, and the mostly good and properly priced street food is amazing. If only they could just serve some alcohol this thing would be perfect! I know some of you live and die by the notion that street food should be cheap and filling- and for the most part, we at Midtown Lunch follow that mantra. We also like quantity (and fully expect to one day find Zach in a deep coma on top of an all-you-can-eat buffet in LA while Harry and his wife looks on in horror.) But like I said, the burrito is only $6! Sure, a couple of the items (like the seared rice balls) are a bit diminutive and costly, but like any other cart/restaurant if you order right, you’ll be sitting pretty. And here, you can sit with your burrito and watch the World Cup at the same time.