The World’s First Food Truck Drive-In
20 Water Street
Brooklyn, New York, NY 11201
Rickshaw Dumpling Truck
NYC Food Fim Festival – 4th Annual – Part 1
George Motz, the man behind the burger bible “Hamburger America,” and film of the same name, along with executive chef Harry Hawk, organize and run the NYC Food Film Festival. This 5 day event combines their mutual love of food and film to create a unique twist to the standard film festival. According to them; “The NYC Food Film Festival is a competitive film festival that presents awards in six categories: Best Feature, Best Short, Best Super-Short, Best Film Made In New York, Food Filmmaker of the Year and the Audience Choice Award. The Official Selections of the 2010 NYC Food Film Festival are reviewed by a judging panel comprised of members of New York City’s food and film communities.”
Among the many fantastic gastronomical events was “The World’s First Food Truck Drive-In.” Located underneath the Brooklyn Bridge in the abandoned Tobacco Warehouse, a smattering of NYC Metro area based food trucks parked up and allowed patrons to go from truck to truck, trying delights from each. The trucks formed a semi-circle around the movie screen where various films were screened. There was plenty of food and movies as well as beers and wines to keep appetites whet. I myself took in a quite a few Harpoon IPA’s which helped to make all of the following possible. Joined by my wife Cara and Jackie from Burger Conquest, with a beautiful scenic view of the Brooklyn Bridge and lower Manhattan, set off on a mission to eat.
The first target on my consumables list was the GO Burger Truck. A relative newbie on the NYC food scene, this truck serves up old school diner fare ala Burgers, Dogs, Fries and Shakes. They started out as a moving target but have since parked up at the South Street Seaport but still randomly venture out around the island. They’ve been on my hit list so I was excited to finally try their burgers.
The GO Burger truck keeps it simple. When you order a cheeseburger, that is all you get; cheese, bun and patty. If you want condiments, you must order them. I went with the simple cheeseburger while Cara and Jackie opted to split the salmon burger. While we stood outside the truck in anticipation the waft of salmon was easily the strongest smell to be coming out of their mobile kitchen. Finally they were served and we parked up at a table, ready to eat.
GO Burger offers singles or doubles and I opted for the former. In retrospect, I wish I would’ve gotten the double. Why? The tasty yet over-sized bun stole the taste show away from the patty which should be the focus. Unfortunately, my bun was burnt leaving a very distinct taste in my mouth. That aside, the cheese was placed on the burger in just the right amount and had that fast food American cheese flavor that we all grew up on. The patty was cooked medium, which even though I asked for medium-rare, is how GO Burger suggests they’re eaten. The juicy and flavorful burger combined with the savory cheese gave this sandwich a gourmet fast-food style burger appeal. I dug it but will need to revisit and revise my order.
Once there was even a the smallest air bubble of space in my stomach, I ran over to get dumplings from the Riskshaw Dumplings Truck. They serve an abbreviated selection of dumplings and noodle bowls that can be found in their Rikshaw Dumplings Bar. Kenny, Anita and David, the trio behind Rikshaw, were an early adapter of the NYC gourmet food truck and have paved the way for many of the trucks featured in this day’s event.
With all the hype behind the Rikshaw dumplings, I couldn’t wait to try them. Out of the 3 various dumplings offered, I chose the Chicken & Thai Basil with spicy peanut sate dipping sauce. Sounds good doesn’t it? WEL
L IT WAS! Dumplings really are a food item that falls under the dime a dozen category not unlike hot wings. You can get them all over, none are really all that bad but the good ones are hard to find. But, when you find the good ones, they’re REALLY good and worth adding to your regular path of consumption.
These dumplings fall into that last category. The noodle covering was cooked al dente, which is something you never see. The ingredients on the inside were full of flavor and made from fresh, quality ingredients. None of the straight from the freeze jazz with these little bad boys. The sauce had a nice mix of sweet and spicy which only worked to enhance the dumplings. Next time you see this truck driving down the street, you might see me chasing after it with a fork!
Although my stomach was saying “Oh dear God no! No more food!!”My eyes were saying “you might want to eat whatever is coming out of the one truck that has a massive line.” I’m a fan of maximizing opportunity, so even though I was close to bursting, I had to see what the line for this green truck was all about. Turns out everyone was waiting to sample some Korean BBQ from The Krave Truck from Jersey City, NJ.
I approached the truck to see what was on the menu and when I read “Kravers. Choice of two meats served with monterey jack cheese, shredded kimchi, onion-cilantro relish on a toasted brioche bun,” all for the low, low, low price of $5, I ran to the back and got in line. A half an hour later I was holding a beef and a pork Kraver. One thing to know about me, I have been to Korea and had such an amazing and eye-opening experience, that I got Korean lettering as a tattoo on my wrist. The country holds a special place in my heart.
I walked back over to the table where Jackie and Cara both looked at me and said “those look really good but I am SO FULL.” I felt the same way yet we all dug into the sandwiches. The sandwiches were served on white squishy buns, not the brioche buns as advertised. That was a little bit of a let down but in reality, it was all about the meat. I must admit to not being a fan of kimchi so I ate some but worked around it for the most part. The spices and sauce on the meat gave these a sloppy joe like consistency with exotic flavoring. Both were delicious but the beef was slightly better than the pork which I actually thought was a little on the sweet side.
Full of tasty treats and ready to burst, we said our good byes and thank yous and went home to recuperate as tomorrow would bring the NYC Food and Film Festival Brooklyn Burger n’ Beer Garden.