Monday, August 31, 2009

NYC Cravings Truck AKA Bian Dang

I finally went to the NYC Cravings truck to see what all the hype was about. I'm quite familiar with Asian food so when something is suddenly popular, I'm skeptical. Mostly because I like tradition and things should taste the way they do. I hate fusion. Although, some very few places have proved me wrong. Just a very few. Anyhow, I passed by this truck several times in the past on 46th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues. But I never stood in line. Mostly because it always long. And the other Asians annoy me. Hahahah! However, the other day it was parked on 48th Street. That was technically farther away from me but the line was much shorter. So short in fact that I was the second person in line. Nice! So if you don't know already, NYC Cravings is a food truck that serves Taiwanese food. It's mostly home-cooked style food. It's not fancy. Just supposed to be good and satisfying. Once at the truck, I quickly glance at the menu and I knew exactly what I wanted: the fried tianbula (fish cake) over rice with secret pork sauce ($8). I pretty much like all kinds of fried fish. I'm not afraid of fishiness so anything goes really. While I was waiting for my order, who did I spot in line? Zack Brooks from Midtown Lunch along with his adorable son, Harry. Apparently, he was thinking the same thing for lunch. Good Taiwanese food outside of Chinatown. I finally found the courage to talk to him (I've seen him on the streets many times over). And he was very friendly. Of course, his cute son was a giggle monster. He gave me some good pointers about the NYC Cravings truck. He liked the fried fish too. It reminded him of Asian fish cake but not the rubbery kind. He was especially fond of the pork sauce that came with it. But that day he had something else on his mind: porken. This he had failed to mention to me (ahem!). It's the fried chicken and pork chop over rice ($7). Woah, big time lunch there. Next time, I have to try that. Anyhow, back in my cubicle, I unwrap the glory of my food. It smelled fantastic. I first tried the fish cake. It was good but not what I'm used to. It's a mixture of ground fish and flour shaped into a patty and deep fried. The kind that I am used to is mostly flour and definitely rubbery. This wasn't rubbery at all but had a strange texture. I liked it. The flavor was very outstanding. It was definitely the seasoning. The rice was well made and soaked up the pork sauce. It was salty and delicious. The pickled vegetables added a nice contrast to all of the other heavy ingredients. Okay, so now I know what the hype is all about. It's good food. It's traditional. And it's under $10. NYC Cravings nyccravings.com

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