Broadway, between Spring and Prince
Since time immemorial, New Yorkers have loved street food. It's in our blood. From the Sabrett hot dog carts on every museum mile corner to the sweet roasted-honey smell of the Nuts 4 Nuts stand wafting down the block to the Halal guys drenching your lamb lunch in a soup of "white" sauce and colon burning hot sauce, if the food's being hawked on the sidewalk, we assume that it has to be good. And it's a pretty good bet that we're not wrong. In the last few years, street meat's gone upscale with the food truck. Every week it seems that the Times is talking about a truck festival or Time Out is doing a comparison of the top 20 rolling menus. Some of these trucks have been so successful that they were able to expand into brick-and-mortar storefronts (see: Schnitzels & Things). But then it sort of removes the fun and, dare I say it, romance of eating truck food.
For about a year, the Tribeca Taco truck's been slinging tacos, burritos and such at NYers. This particular day, it was parked in SoHo opposite Uniqlo and I got on the long line of people looking for a cheap, tasty, and these days, trendy lunch.
Every taco came with cilantro and onion. There were a variety of taco fillings to choose from, a variety of sauces to pour on top, and a choice of soft or crunchy. I'll always choose a hard taco over a soft one and I stuck to my guns this time, too. As for the fillings: soy mango, chipotle crema, avocado crema, pineapple barbecue, salsa verde and picante rojo. The first four are, I'm certain, very tasty. But it seemed to me that they would probably overpower the fillings with sweetness. So I stuck with a traditional picante rojo.
I ordered four (the limit you were allowed to order), all different, like a variety pack. First, Cactus. Cactus was one of Tribeca's two vegetarian options, the other being chipotle tofu. It wasn't a bad taco, but it wasn't a good one either. Cactus is a relatively tasteless plant and tastes pretty much like okra without the slime factor. Next time I want to skip the meat I'll go with tofu. Up next I bit into the namesake Tribeca, chorizo and spicy pork. Not bad, but not as good as number three, the Al Pastor spicy pork and pineapple. Ah, now we're getting somewhere. Sweet in all the right places with the spicy tang of the pork. But I have to say, my favorite of all was the plain old, simple as can be Ground Beef. Not greasy, not bland. If I ever find myself getting a taco in Corona, it's my go to taco, and I think it will be here in SoHo, too. Perhaps that's boring of me, but I've always seen tacos as comfort food. It's already perfect, so why fix what ain't broken.
Though that said, I bet a s'mores taco would be pretty neat.[ © Copyright eateryROW 2011 ]