Archive for 'Street Meat Palooza'

Street Meat Palooza 2 is in the Books

Just wrapped up the judging for the second annual Street Meat Palooza. 30+ lunchers just converged in Bryant Park and palooza’d the hell out of street meat from 15 different Midtown carts. There were some crazy new developments this year, and my hunch is a new winner is going to be crowned. Stay tuned… results will be posted next week.

Related:
Your Chance at a Spot in Street Meat Palooza 2
Street-Meat-Palooza: A 13 Cart Chicken/Lamb Over Rice Showdown

Final Shot at Street Meat Palooza 2

Just a reminder today is the last day you can nominate or vote for a cart to be included in Street Meat Palooza 2, our chicken and lamb over rice showdown going on next week. A few of the commenters will be chosen to be participants/judges.  And don’t forget, even though SMP2 is closed to the public, you can also enter to win a spot by purchasing a Vendy Award ticket before Midnight tonight. Good luck!

Your Chance at a Spot in Street Meat Palooza 2

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Photo by Blondie and Brownie

One year ago this month, 30 Midtown Lunchers converged to eat 26 containers of street meat from 13 different Midtown carts.  Chicken and lamb over rice was consumed, scores were given, and in the end one cart claimed victory over the others in a completely blind taste taste.  The event was dubbed Street-Meat-Palooza, and the Famous Halal Guys on 53rd & 6th Ave. were declared the winner.

Now, one year later, the top 5 from last year will return and face a new set of challengers in Street Meat Palooza 2!  The tasting event is not open to the public (for logistical reasons), but there is a way for you to be one of the 30 lucky lunchers who gets to attend.

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XPL Seeing a Post Palooza Bump?

The Line at XPL, 48th and Park

I don’t remember seeing lines like this at the XPL truck (on Park Ave. & 48th St.) before they surprisingly took 2nd place at Street Meat Palooza. It just goes to show, all carts are not created equal. (You may say the secret ingredient is the rice.)

Thanks to Blondie and Brownie for passing along the photo.

Street-Meat-Palooza: A 13 Cart Chicken/Lamb Over Rice Showdown

Street Meat Palooza

Not all street meat is created equal.  It may seem, to the uninitiated, that many chicken and lamb over rice vendors are serving the same food, but the real cart aficionados know the truth.  Sure there are the stand out carts that everyone has heard of, but even amongst the no-name carts there are some huge differences. Different rice, different quality of meat, different veggies or salad, bread, no bread, different sauces, and most importantly, different spices.  Many of the vendors are from different countries, and usually that’s reflected in the way the food tastes.  It’s not until you put 13 plates of it side by side that you realize no two are alike. And that was my dream; to bring together different street meats from all over Midtown to one central location and have a massive taste off (yes, I have weird dreams.)

Last week, in Bryant Park, that dream came true.  20 Midtown Lunch’ers converged, tasted and rated 13 different plates of chicken and lamb over rice, from 13 different carts in Midtown.  Each lunch’er was instructed to bring two large orders of chicken and lamb over rice from their favorite cart (one topped with white sauce, one with white sauce and hot sauce.) We got the famous, “the best”, and not so well known carts, put them side by side and let them duke it out in a blind taste test.  With separate ratings for chicken, lamb, rice, white sauce, hot sauce, value, and overall taste, we proved conclusively that sometimes the ”hype” is warranted, and sometimes it’s not.  And as expected, with all of the judging done blind, a few unknown carts distinguished themselves with some surprisingly good scores. 

The results of the First Annual Street-Meat-Palooza, after the jump. Read more »