Archive for '46th btw. 5+6th'

Food Trucks Have Been Forced Out of 46th Street

The block of 46th Street between 6th and 5th Avenue has been overpopulated with food trucks for the last few years.  Since it’s near plenty of office buildings and there are very few restaurant options nearby, it’s one of a few hugely popular Midtown streets for the trucks to congregate. But as two tipsters have informed us, the trucks have recently vanished.

I spoke to some of the truck owners and it sounds like the police have cracked down on this spot over the last few weeks. One day all the trucks were made to close, on another day a few vendors got huge tickets, and now it looks like the spot is officially closed to trucks. For now at least.

This is not the first time trucks have been forced off this street and the same thing happened in 2013 around the same time when 47th Street and Park was shut down. Trucks have a very difficult time finding a legal spot to park since they are not allowed to sell food from a parking meter. But on the other hand, they have a permit from the Department of Health to legally vend food from the streets. So they find themselves stuck in the middle.

It also gets difficult when the trucks travel in packs. While it might be good for business to make themselves visible, it also draws unwanted attention. Once a street becomes too crowded the police will inevitably shut them down. So until new, more fair laws are passed, it only makes sense for the trucks to spread out a bit.

Until things simmer down on this street, we do still have the carts. It might be the prefect time to revisit Kim’s Aunt Kitchen and Moshe’s Falafel.

The Obligatory Kim’s Aunt Kitchen Lent Post

Today is a post-Mardi Gras, pre-Easter Friday, and you know what that means? Those of us who observe Lent generally refrain from eating meat on Fridays (and sometimes on Wednesdays, and some sects do the entire Lenten period… But that doesn’t mean deliciousness should stop! Most people seem to lean towards fish on days they don’t eat meat (which explains the return of the filet’o'fish to McDonald’s), and Midtown Lunch seems to have loved Kim’s Aunt’s Kitchen Cart in the past – though no one’s mentioned it since 2012.

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Park Italian Gourmet Finally Gets a Proper Review

Park Italian Gourmet has gotten a lot of attention on Midtown lunch over the years from Zach and other Midtown Lunch’ers – most recently back in 2010 in this post, but it’s never gotten a formal +/- review until now. I spotted this gem right away and I thought it would be good to get the word out yet again.

I should first warn you not to let Park Italian Gourmet’s name fool you. When you hear the name, you might think of either an overpriced Italian restaurant aimed at tourists or another midtown “gourmet” deli with scads of trays filled with greasy slop. But as soon as you see the sign you can tell there’s something special about Park. And there are more than a few midtown lunchers who know the secret: Park Italian Gourmet is a divey Italian deli where grumpy people serve up delicious sandwiches. Just my kind of place.

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Nino’s Special Chicken Sandwich is a Pleasant Surprise


During Zach’s neverending search for the best chicken parm sandwich in Midtown, he came across Nino’s (46th btw. 5+6), a good, cheap Italian place that served up one of the better chicken parms he tried. I never had much reason to check the place out, until I walked by one day recently and they were advertising a special chicken sandwich with fresh mozzarella and hot peppers. That seemed worth checking out…
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Cafe Jia Coming Soon; Michelle’s Kitchen Closed Already?


Photo courtesy of Lunch’er Adam

I noticed a couple of things while walking down 46th street btw. 5+6th the other day… the first is Cafe Jia, a new place opening soon right next to Nino’s. Sadly it looks like another generic deli, but it does say tex-mex bar, a teppanyaki (think hibachi) bar and a gourmet coffee bar (I’ll believe that when I see it). You never know, this place could be good. (We’re not keeping our hopes up.) Regardless, it’s supposed to be open 24 hours, so they’ve got that going for them.

Remember Michelle’s on the same block?

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Moshe’s Falafel Raises Prices

Moshe's Falafel

After a giving up fried foods for Lent, I had a post-Easter hankering for falafel, so I headed over to 46th street to hit up Moshe’s Falafel just back from their Passover hiatus. While waiting to place my order discovered that they’ve raised their prices across the board.
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Kosher Deluxe Offers Up A Schnitzel Primer

A mini argument discussion broke out in the comments the other day over who makes the best schnitzel: Jews or Germans. I suppose the two aren’t mutually exclusive, but the premise of the argument was chicken vs. veal/pork.  Sadly I have to go against my people on this one, and agree that wiener schnitzel is clearly the superior schnitzel- although I wouldn’t turn my nose up at some good Israeli style Kosher chicken schnitzel.

So with all this talk of schnitzel, and the Schnitzel Truck still weeks away, I hit up Kosher Deluxe (on 46th btw. 5+6th) on Monday for a little chicken schnitzel in pita action.

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My Name is Zach, and I Am An Addict

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I’m sorry, I couldn’t help it. I have a problem. The funny thing is others stopped by the newly opened Panda International (on 46th btw. 5+6th), took one look at the food, and walked out. From Lunch’er “Gustad”

“Went with some coworkers, and just as we were walking in, 3 guys walked out laughing. so i asked what was wrong, and they said it looked too sketchy. we continued walking in to come to the same conclusion. in their warm trays, i saw meatballs and other italian dishes. what the hell!!?? their menu had chinese dishes for 10-11 bucks (the stuff that is usually 6-8 at a real chinese joint). and heros, smoothies, etc… very odd. i saw a mexican in the kitchen and two white people up front. i can eat at the junkiest of chinese places, and i’m not saying this place looks junkie, but it was very far from appetizing. we left without food.”

I stayed and ate.

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Biryani Cart Gets New Competition From the Strangest Place

Aamir's Halal Food

Lunch’er Josh, aka NYC Foodie, tipped me off to a new cart called Aamir Halal Food- which is serving chicken tikka and lamb over rice on the opposite corner diagonally across the street from the Biryani Cart (on 46th and 6th). According to Josh, the new cart is run by Aamir Hussein- who just so happens to be the father-in-law of Meru, the owner/chef of the Biryani Cart. When I stopped by to ask Meru about it yesterday, he called the new cart “competition” and admitted that it was in fact his father-in-law running the cart, and serving very similar food. He stopped short of saying it was causing “a problem in his family” (my words, not his) but I could see he wasn’t too psyched about the whole situation.  If I had to translate the look he gave me into words, I think it would be: “it is what it is”.

Totally in the mood for some street meat (I’ve been on a street cart tear lately) I headed over to this new unauthorized copy of the Biryani cart to see what was going on.

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Moshe’s Falafel Moves 2nd Truck from Union Sq to Midtown

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The Moshe’s Falafel truck that has been parked in Union Square for the past 6 months has given up on that spot and moved to 57th and Broadway.  According to the guys running the 2nd truck, business started off ok but has tapered off significantly during the winter.  So this week they decided to try out the NW corner of Midtown.  They haven’t settled on a permanent spot as of yet, but plan on being somewhere near 57th and Broadway every day starting around Noon.  Yesterday they were on Broadway btw. 56+57th on the West side of the street, and have already started to draw a crowd.

It’s been awhile since I’ve eaten at the Moshe’s Cart, so I decided to re-sample the goods…

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