Trinidad & Tobago’s Roti Is Totally Worth Dirtying Your Hands For

As you’re probably aware there are two carts serving West Indian food in the FiDi. I knew about both Veronica’s Kitchen and Trinidad & Tobago carts before I became editor of this site but I hadn’t ever eaten at them. Why? Well, I live in a neighborhood where for a long time the only food options other than crappy Chinese were Caribbean places. My very first meal after moving to NYC and unloading all of my belongings was at a West Indian takeout place. So I guess I figured since I could get this food any time I didn’t need to stuff my face with it at lunch. Then the other day I really wanted roti come lunchtime for some reason I can’t explain, and it was a toss up which cart to get this from. Veronica’s has already been written up a couple of times on this site so instead I headed way down to the T&T cart on Whitehall St. (btw. Bridge & Pearl) to see how Ms. Shirley’s roti stacked up.

The roti fillings are basically the same as what you can also get with rice and peas. The chicken options are $5 while the goat curry or stew beef are $6 and I believe there’s also a vegetarian option that just has potato and chickpeas in it.

I went with the stew chicken and saw the roti wrapper being taken out of one of those hot/cold coolers telling me that this was probably made in someone’s kitchen the night before. I couldn’t really see what was going into the wrapper but I had confidence it would be delicious.

Once I opened the container it was all I could do to snap a couple of photos before devouring that roti. The chickpea curry was amazing on its own but the chicken was stewed so it was falling off the bone. Yes, you can’t really eat this thing like a burrito unless you take all of the chicken off the bone and even then it’s going to be a messy, saucy proposition. Instead I ate the chicken first and then tried to wrap up the roti and eat it with the remaining filling most of which ended up all over my hands and face. You might not want to eat this on a lunch date.

The kicker that took this lunch up a notch was the hot sauce that tasted of scotch bonnet peppers and some sort of fruit. It was applied sparingly but was so good I’m still thinking about it. If you like spicy food at all you should definitely get some of this sauce on whatever you get from the cart.

Trinidad & Tobago Cart, Whitehall St. (btw. Bridge & Pearl)



  • I haven’t had a single bad thing from this cart. it is one of my go-to places.

    Sadly, there is often a line, but rarely is it too long of a wait.

  • i used to frequent a trini truck that would park in the wall street/front street/pine street area. the front of the truck had the word “Trinidad” across the top. i remember during the winters they would serve this amazing soup laden with cow feet and tripe. i used to get doubles, stewed chicken, roti, and the best coconut and current rolls from there. can anyone tell me if this is the same owners? just taking a long shot. i haven’t eaten from the truck of my past for a good 10 or so years…

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