Archive for 'Street Meat'

Asked + Answered: Everything You Wanted to Know About the Halal Guys’ New Costa Mesa Storefront

At the beginning of last year something magical happened. A wish, that New York transplants like myself have been making to the stars for years, finally came true.  L.A. got its own street meat cart, serving chicken and “lamb” over rice with white sauce and hot sauce.  The New York street staple known as “halal” was finally available on the west coast.  And it was pretty good.  But that was just a facsimile. A drill, if you will.  This, my friends, is the real deal.  The “Famous” Halal Guys who have the cart in Midtown Manhattan (on 53rd Street & 6th Avenue) with the super long lines, have started opening brick and mortar franchises. And one of them is opening in Costa Mesa on October 2nd.  Yesterday I drove 50 minutes down the 405 to get a sneak peak at the new location, and will now answer every question you have about what I saw and ate.


So first things first.  What’s the place called?   The Halal Guys

And this is the same exact same “Famous Halal Guys” with the long lines in Midtown on 53rd & 6th?  Didn’t you read the intro?  (If you don’t know who the Halal Guys are, it might be worth reading this. If you want to know about the history of this food in L.A., you’ll want to read this.)

But how did this happen?  Aren’t they just a street meat cart?  How are they now opening brick and mortars all the way across the country?  Last year Fransmart, the company behind Five Guys and Qdoba’s expansion, cut a deal with the Halal Guys to take them international.   The New York Times wrote all about it. 

So is this the first location?  Nope.  Two brick and mortars have already opened in New York City.  And a Chicago location opened last month. Read more »

Chicken & Rice Truck to Bring NYC Style Street Meat to L.A.

Big news for fans of New York City style street meat- our prayers have finally be answered! A new truck is getting set to hit Los Angeles serving chicken and lamb over rice with white sauce and hot sauce.  It’s called Chicken & Rice and they’re hoping to open next week in a parking lot on Hollywood & Highland (next to Mel’s).

Check out the menu, after the jump…

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Would Los Angeles Support a NYC Style Halal Street Meat Truck?

IMG_1180I’m in NYC stuffing my face with street meat today, so no lunch post today… but while we’re on the subject of Street Meat, I do have a quick question. (If you’re not familiar with NYC style “street meat”, this should answer all your questions). It just so happens one of my favorite street meat “chefs” (can they be called chefs? cooks… sidewalk street food slingers?) just moved to Los Angeles and is contemplating opening a food truck that serves NYC style street meat- or “Halal” food, as it’s known on countless carts in NYC. We have plenty of shawarma, and Middle Eastern platters of meat with tahini and/or hot sauce. But it is impossible to get a plate of chopped up chicken and “lamb” (aka gyro meat) over rice with “white sauce” and hot sauce (believe me I’ve tried.) If you’ve ever been to NYC you know exactly what I’m talking about. So the big question is, would L.A. support a food truck that served this very specific New York street food? I’m not one to recommend that anybody opens a food truck (it’s tough tough work, for very little money) but I would be really excited to be able to get street meat in L.A.

Am I the only one?

Why is There No “Street Meat” in L.A.?

Big Fat Pita Serves the Closest Thing to NYC Street Meat I’ve Seen in L.A.


Midtown Manhattan has got practically nothing on Los Angeles.  Go through my list of faves, and there is practically nothing I could get in NYC for lunch that I can’t get here. But there is plenty here you’d be hard pressed to find there (good Thai, good Mexican and great Persian food, just to name a few).  But there is one thing I do miss from working all those years in Midtown.  Street meat. Chicken and lamb over rice with white sauce and hot sauce is 100% New York City. The halal food street meat plate was invented on the streets of NYC, and it doesn’t seem to have made it past the city line.

Until now?  While walking through the Westfield Mall in Culver City the other day I couldn’t help but notice somebody eating a styrofoam tray of food that looked suspiciously like street meat!  Could this be the breakthrough we’ve been looking for?  Only one way to find out…

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