Possibly, the most amazing pork roasting setup I’ve ever experienced. Every weekend, in this little shed, Angel roasts 200-400 pounds of whole, fresh pork for his local #PuertoRican community. Such a friendly, lively place. Makes you love New York. Meet Vendy Finalist: Lechonera La Pirana. Video tomorrow! #Bronx #streetfood #foodcurated #vendyawards (at South Bronx, New York City)

We had a blast on Saturday meeting the great folks from the @vendyawards. Thanks for the helpful tips and your wealth of knowledge in this badass competition. Buy your tickets now and come support the best of the best in NYC #streetfood. Thank you all for nominating us! 💖💓#smorgasburg #regram #vendyawards (at Smorgasburg)

Recap: The NYC Vendy Awards (2014 - Part II)

After making my way half way around the crazy number of food trucks that came to Governor’s Island for the Vendy Awards (part one found here) I was ready to tackle the second side of the park.

Churros are the perfect portable dessert. Fried crunchy and drizzled with chocolate. I’ve had some great ones in Madrid and Mexico. Ricas Botanas Mexicanas makes a great snack for on the go.

Lechon is a pork dish (it refers to a roasted suckling pig). The Bronx’ Lechonera La Pirana served up a tender and flavorful Lechon offer rice. The national dish of Puerto Rico was well represented here.

From Pork to Vietnamese Chicken with Dirty Rice provided by Big D’s Grub. Juicy and well seasoned, I ate this pretty quickly.

King of Falafel won a Vendy Award in 2010 and it’s clear to see why. The  Chicken Shawarma would make for a happy lunchtime any day with crunchy veggies and a nice wrapped pita.

The amount of food that Calexico was packing on a plate was truly impressive. The Baja Fish Taco, Chipotle Pork Quesadilla, and Homemade Plantain Chips were all tasty (the taco was my favorite). I had to share this plate as I was starting to fill up.

I’ve written about Nuchas before for the Food Truck Association blog. Their Empanadas are delicious and in fun and creative flavors.

They were offering a ton of flavors but I opted for the Argentine Empanada (Pat LaFrieda Beef with a Torched Meringue).

It was a nice mix of sweet and savory and made me think of Thanksgiving and fall.

Bolivian Llama Party’s Triple Pork Chola Slider followed and it was one of my favorites for the day. I can’t tell you everything that was on this bun but it was all good.

Hallo Berlin had one of the heartiest offerings of the day. It’s sampler was a mix of suasages, slaws, potato salad, and more. Germany at it’s best. All that was missing was a stein.

The cart was small and unassuming but the food was impressive and I had to stop and watch the dosas being cranked out in perfect order.

The Pondicherry Masala Dosa from NY Dosas had the right mix of spices and a crepe that was thin and just a bit crispy. Another past Vendy Award winner and I can see why.

After my dosa, I wanted something sweet. Alchemy Creamery‘s Almond Marzipan Ice Cream Sandwiches are unbelievably good and surprising Vegan.

Keeping with Vegan dishes, Cinnamon Snail made this tasty trio of Korean BBQ Seitar Taco, Sage Tempeh Sausage Slider, and a Habanero Buffalo Cauliflower along with a Vanilla Bourbon Creme Brûlée Donut will not have you missing the animal products.

I guess I was on a veggie kick (but not converted) as my next stop was Chickpea & Olive for a Phatty Beet Slider. Still not a huge fan of beets but this was a great little sandwich.

My last bite (as the rain started to fall) came from Ramen Burger with it’s, you guessed it, Ramen Burger. I’ve had several versions of this burger and the idea of using Ramen noodels for the bun is genius. I liked the Asian flavors and scallions used in this one.

The rain started coming down harder and I made my way back to the Ferry.

I sampled all of the winners and the judge’s made some good calls. Here is the full list:

Vendy Cup Winner: Cinnamon Snail

People’s Choice Winner: Nuchas

Master Cup Winner: Calexico

Rookie of the Year: Snowday

Best of Market: Zha Pan Asian

Best Dessert: Ice & Vice

I hope that I’m in NYC next year for the 15th Vendy Awards as it’s a great day out and some of the best street food to be found.

Recap: The NYC Vendy Awards (2014 - Part I)

The Vendy Awards celebrated its ten-year anniversary a few weeks ago and I made the trek to Governor’s Island to check out the best food trucks in NYC. Getting to Governor’s Island was easier than I expected (just a hop on the 1 train and then a short ferry ride). We were lucky to be able to enjoy a full morning of tasting before the rain hit that afternoon (the weather looked a little ominous on the boat ride over).

Once we reached Governor’s Island it was a quick walk to the trucks. The food trucks were parked in a semicircle with judges tents and a VIP area inside.

We walked the perimeter and tried almost every truck, which is not an easy feat with so many in attendance.

First up: Snowday Food Truck. They serve Maple-syrup themed foods and provide jobs and skills for formerly incarcerated youth. It sounded good and supported a good cause. I’m happy to report that the Maple Grilled Cheese and Gazpacho were both top notch.

If the bees (and there was literally a swarm around these) were any indication of how good the doughnuts from Dough would be then we were in for a treat. We avoided getting stung and loved both the Hibiscus and the Dulce de Leche (we’ll need to try the Passion Fruit at another time).

Dub Pies makes the perfect cold weather, comfort food. I enjoyed the Chicken and Vegetable Pie with Mashed Potatoes and think I would have been just as happy with the Beef and Cheese or Curry Vegetable (all three looked tasty).

From pot pies it was on to comfort food from a bit further East. The Chive and Pork Dumplings from Shanghai Sogo were packed with flavor.

My next plate was another of my favorites for the day: Bulgogi and Thai Green Curry Chicken from Zha Pan Asian. Rolled up, fried, and delicious Asian arrancini. The truck has eight flavors and they even come in a mini size.

The GoGo Grill is the collaboration of a former investment banker and a cook. They make sandwiches, salads, and soups with a Mediterranean/Middle Eastern flair. At the Vendy’s I got to sample the Garibaldi, which is Pulled Pork and Shredded Veggies on an English Muffin as well as a Falafel Ball. I’d definitely stop by for the Pulled Pork and the Battery Burger on the menu looks good, too.

There was quite a crowd around Solber Pupusas. A pupusa is a round corn patty from El Salvador (similar to the Venezuelan arepa). It is stuffed and served with a bunch of different veggies and condiments. I tasted the Pork Pupusa (I should really say that I devoured it).

Time for something sweet. Ice & Vice makes some of the most amazing handcrafted ice creams and they are as creative as they are tasty. Both the Milk Money (Sea Salt & Chocolate) and Tea Dance (Black Currant with Goat Milk Panna Cotta) were excellent.

After two great ice creams from Ice & Vice, why not chase it with an Ice Cream Soda Float? Whole Foods served Grown-up Soda mixed with Steve’s Ice Cream. Great combo (and using one of my favorite sodas).

I kept on tasting as the clouds continued to roll in. I was only about half way done, so the rain needed to wait.