A Chinatown eatery has put something on the sidewalk that’s much more exciting than the usual bag of fish: the cream-cake machine! Unveiled for a test run yesterday outside of Quickly, a trendy bubble-tea and shabu shabu spot, the Korean contraption is just one of three in the city, said manager Patrick Chu. (The other two are at Quickly's Flushing and Sunset Park locations.) The thumb-size cream cakes cost $2 for eight and $5 for 24. Considering the machine churns out two dozen cakes every five minutes, we wonder if this means the end for the humble griddle man.
Quickly, 237 Grand St., nr. Bowery; 212-431-0998; 41-40 Kissena Blvd., nr. Barclay Ave., Flushing; 718-358-1835; 5924 Eighth Ave., nr. 59th St., Sunset Park, Brooklyn; 718-567-8189.
Seen the airline commercial where the guy orders saffron risotto at a hot-dog stand? We were reminded of it when we saw this vendor on 13th and Broadway forgoing the usual Sabrett’s umbrella for a snazzy Campari number that looks like it was poached from outside of Morandi. Even worse, our bagel and coffee man has started handing us bagels in what look like Continental Airlines barf bags. What’s next? Pfizer ads on our beloved blue coffee cups? We’ll keep a close eye on this trend, but in the meantime, we’re only accepting bagels if they’re in proper white or brown baggies.
Last week we aired Chris Noth’s lament about the corporatization of the city. Turns out his Sex and the City co-star Sarah Jessica Parker is also looking out for the little man. During Ralph Lauren’s recent 40th-anniversary party, Parker told our reporter Amy Odell that she loved the magazine’s “Street Fare” feature. “I’ll eat anything if it’s off of a cart,” she confessed her favorite being a Middle Eastern one on Sixth Avenue somewhere between 47th and 55th. So she’s not worried about hygiene? “I think they’re actually pretty vigilant about it,” she said. “They’ve got these business men standing in line for three hours to get their lunch and you don’t hear a lot of reports about intestinal issues.” As for her favorite eatery that isn’t on wheels, she admits, “I don’t know how to pronounce it correctly. S-F-O?” Is this how one of the girls ended up at El Cantinero and not Il Cantinori in that episode?
Related:Street Fare [NYM]
We felt altogether flummoxed when we found that this Saturday’s Singapore Day festivities in Central Park, which included a major “hawker center,” filled with Singaporean street-food vendors, was sold out. Singapore is considered home to some of the world’s greatest street food, and it was going to be here in NYC, and we couldn’t get access? But now a crafty if unscrupulous correspondent has written in, suggesting a method of entry. “The event is filled up for non-Singaporeans. So I registered as a Singaporean national living in NYC. Their computer program cannot recognize and reject [non-Singaporean] names,” he tells us. We don’t answer for your success, or your conscience. We’re just passing along the info.
Coming to America: The World's Greatest Street Food [Serious Eats]