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Friday, August 8, 2008

Mini-Review: Moshe's Falafel (NYC)

Moshe's Falafel

(Guest post by The Boyfriend)

Anytime I travel, be it domestically or internationally, there's one question foremost on my mind when it comes to dining options: What foods are available that I can't find back home?

I've never understood people who visit cities, countries, and other locales known for their food, but then opt to eat at national chain restaurants. I have a friend, for example, who visits the Florida panhandle every year for a week. Amid all that fresh seafood, he takes virtually all of his meals at Wendy's, McDonald's, Pizza Hut, and Applebee's.

I do understand that there is comfort to be found in familiar foods when one is out of one's element. I also understand that not everyone has an adventurous culinary spirit. I get it. (And to be honest, whenever I see Anthony Bourdain eating parboiled lizard gizzards with the natives of Paraguay, I think that, were I in his situation, I'd at least ask whether a Burger King might be hidden in the nearby jungle.) Still, within reason, I want what the locals eat.

Julie and I just returned from vacation in New York City. I've been lucky to have spent a lot of time there through the years; it's my favorite place on the planet. And when I think of New York food, I think of street vendors. I love NYC hot dogs (here, insert your own David Letterman-esque joke about the water pans in which the frankfurters simmer). Especially in cold weather, hot roasted glazed nuts can warm me to my toes. Fruit-flavored ices and slushes on a hot summer day? Yum.

But my favorite street vendor in New York is Moshe's Falafel, at the corner of W. 46th Street and 6th Avenue.

Moshe's Falafel

Falafel--or as I call them, "Jewish hushpuppies"--are not readily available in Cincinnati. They are spiced ground chickpeas, rolled into a ball and deep fried. The most popular (and my favorite) way to serve falafel is in a pita pocket, topped with lettuce, tomato, tahini (a sauce made from toasted sesame seeds), hot sauce, and a sour pickle.


Moshe's falafel are perfectly fried, golden brown and crispy on the outside, soft and moist on the inside. Moshe uses canola oil for frying, and he replaces the oil every day, so the falafel never have a rancid taste (a problem with another vendor's falafel that I sampled during the trip).

During peak lunch hours on business days, the line of customers can stretch ten to fifteen yards down the street. If one is in a hurry, the line can be daunting, but Moshe and the men who work inside the booth are very efficient and process orders in a matter of seconds. For busy New Yorkers on their lunch breaks, there is no time for dawdling.

Moshe's Falafel

(Julie would like to add that Moshe's falafel is not only kosher, but also vegan. No animals were harmed in the making of the falafel.)

5 comments:

Michelle said...

I have a former friend with whom I once went to Tennessee. We were in search of a place to eat and she suggested Ruby Tuesdays. Apparently whenever she travels she searches out a Ruby Tuesdays because "it's safe." I won the argument and we ended up at a local restaurant, but I was so surprised. I'm a picky eater but I still try to find locals joints and places where I can't eat here at home.

Our favorite trick, by the way, is to ask our cabbies where to eat. Using that trick, we often end up at out-of-the-way locals places. This worked especially well in New Orleans.

Glad you both had fun in NYC!
Cheers!

The Boyfriend said...

Michelle--Great idea. I tend to seek out and ask bona fide locals about where to eat. (I don't always trust hotel concierges...I think they often have ulterior motives for steering guests to particular establishments.)

Julie said...

We CAN get Falafel in Cincinnati. Andy's Mediterranean... but I don't think he serves them like Moshe does.

Harold said...

Very good falafel at the Diner on Elm/Marrakech Cafe.

Tom Aarons said...

Great photos! They're making me hungry. And I'm with Michelle. If you want local, cheap and reasonably clean, taxi drivers often know exactly where to go.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Mini-Review: Moshe's Falafel (NYC)

Moshe's Falafel

(Guest post by The Boyfriend)

Anytime I travel, be it domestically or internationally, there's one question foremost on my mind when it comes to dining options: What foods are available that I can't find back home?

I've never understood people who visit cities, countries, and other locales known for their food, but then opt to eat at national chain restaurants. I have a friend, for example, who visits the Florida panhandle every year for a week. Amid all that fresh seafood, he takes virtually all of his meals at Wendy's, McDonald's, Pizza Hut, and Applebee's.

I do understand that there is comfort to be found in familiar foods when one is out of one's element. I also understand that not everyone has an adventurous culinary spirit. I get it. (And to be honest, whenever I see Anthony Bourdain eating parboiled lizard gizzards with the natives of Paraguay, I think that, were I in his situation, I'd at least ask whether a Burger King might be hidden in the nearby jungle.) Still, within reason, I want what the locals eat.

Julie and I just returned from vacation in New York City. I've been lucky to have spent a lot of time there through the years; it's my favorite place on the planet. And when I think of New York food, I think of street vendors. I love NYC hot dogs (here, insert your own David Letterman-esque joke about the water pans in which the frankfurters simmer). Especially in cold weather, hot roasted glazed nuts can warm me to my toes. Fruit-flavored ices and slushes on a hot summer day? Yum.

But my favorite street vendor in New York is Moshe's Falafel, at the corner of W. 46th Street and 6th Avenue.

Moshe's Falafel

Falafel--or as I call them, "Jewish hushpuppies"--are not readily available in Cincinnati. They are spiced ground chickpeas, rolled into a ball and deep fried. The most popular (and my favorite) way to serve falafel is in a pita pocket, topped with lettuce, tomato, tahini (a sauce made from toasted sesame seeds), hot sauce, and a sour pickle.


Moshe's falafel are perfectly fried, golden brown and crispy on the outside, soft and moist on the inside. Moshe uses canola oil for frying, and he replaces the oil every day, so the falafel never have a rancid taste (a problem with another vendor's falafel that I sampled during the trip).

During peak lunch hours on business days, the line of customers can stretch ten to fifteen yards down the street. If one is in a hurry, the line can be daunting, but Moshe and the men who work inside the booth are very efficient and process orders in a matter of seconds. For busy New Yorkers on their lunch breaks, there is no time for dawdling.

Moshe's Falafel

(Julie would like to add that Moshe's falafel is not only kosher, but also vegan. No animals were harmed in the making of the falafel.)

5 comments:

Michelle said...

I have a former friend with whom I once went to Tennessee. We were in search of a place to eat and she suggested Ruby Tuesdays. Apparently whenever she travels she searches out a Ruby Tuesdays because "it's safe." I won the argument and we ended up at a local restaurant, but I was so surprised. I'm a picky eater but I still try to find locals joints and places where I can't eat here at home.

Our favorite trick, by the way, is to ask our cabbies where to eat. Using that trick, we often end up at out-of-the-way locals places. This worked especially well in New Orleans.

Glad you both had fun in NYC!
Cheers!

The Boyfriend said...

Michelle--Great idea. I tend to seek out and ask bona fide locals about where to eat. (I don't always trust hotel concierges...I think they often have ulterior motives for steering guests to particular establishments.)

Julie said...

We CAN get Falafel in Cincinnati. Andy's Mediterranean... but I don't think he serves them like Moshe does.

Harold said...

Very good falafel at the Diner on Elm/Marrakech Cafe.

Tom Aarons said...

Great photos! They're making me hungry. And I'm with Michelle. If you want local, cheap and reasonably clean, taxi drivers often know exactly where to go.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Mini-Review: Moshe's Falafel (NYC)

Moshe's Falafel

(Guest post by The Boyfriend)

Anytime I travel, be it domestically or internationally, there's one question foremost on my mind when it comes to dining options: What foods are available that I can't find back home?

I've never understood people who visit cities, countries, and other locales known for their food, but then opt to eat at national chain restaurants. I have a friend, for example, who visits the Florida panhandle every year for a week. Amid all that fresh seafood, he takes virtually all of his meals at Wendy's, McDonald's, Pizza Hut, and Applebee's.

I do understand that there is comfort to be found in familiar foods when one is out of one's element. I also understand that not everyone has an adventurous culinary spirit. I get it. (And to be honest, whenever I see Anthony Bourdain eating parboiled lizard gizzards with the natives of Paraguay, I think that, were I in his situation, I'd at least ask whether a Burger King might be hidden in the nearby jungle.) Still, within reason, I want what the locals eat.

Julie and I just returned from vacation in New York City. I've been lucky to have spent a lot of time there through the years; it's my favorite place on the planet. And when I think of New York food, I think of street vendors. I love NYC hot dogs (here, insert your own David Letterman-esque joke about the water pans in which the frankfurters simmer). Especially in cold weather, hot roasted glazed nuts can warm me to my toes. Fruit-flavored ices and slushes on a hot summer day? Yum.

But my favorite street vendor in New York is Moshe's Falafel, at the corner of W. 46th Street and 6th Avenue.

Moshe's Falafel

Falafel--or as I call them, "Jewish hushpuppies"--are not readily available in Cincinnati. They are spiced ground chickpeas, rolled into a ball and deep fried. The most popular (and my favorite) way to serve falafel is in a pita pocket, topped with lettuce, tomato, tahini (a sauce made from toasted sesame seeds), hot sauce, and a sour pickle.


Moshe's falafel are perfectly fried, golden brown and crispy on the outside, soft and moist on the inside. Moshe uses canola oil for frying, and he replaces the oil every day, so the falafel never have a rancid taste (a problem with another vendor's falafel that I sampled during the trip).

During peak lunch hours on business days, the line of customers can stretch ten to fifteen yards down the street. If one is in a hurry, the line can be daunting, but Moshe and the men who work inside the booth are very efficient and process orders in a matter of seconds. For busy New Yorkers on their lunch breaks, there is no time for dawdling.

Moshe's Falafel

(Julie would like to add that Moshe's falafel is not only kosher, but also vegan. No animals were harmed in the making of the falafel.)

5 comments:

Michelle said...

I have a former friend with whom I once went to Tennessee. We were in search of a place to eat and she suggested Ruby Tuesdays. Apparently whenever she travels she searches out a Ruby Tuesdays because "it's safe." I won the argument and we ended up at a local restaurant, but I was so surprised. I'm a picky eater but I still try to find locals joints and places where I can't eat here at home.

Our favorite trick, by the way, is to ask our cabbies where to eat. Using that trick, we often end up at out-of-the-way locals places. This worked especially well in New Orleans.

Glad you both had fun in NYC!
Cheers!

The Boyfriend said...

Michelle--Great idea. I tend to seek out and ask bona fide locals about where to eat. (I don't always trust hotel concierges...I think they often have ulterior motives for steering guests to particular establishments.)

Julie said...

We CAN get Falafel in Cincinnati. Andy's Mediterranean... but I don't think he serves them like Moshe does.

Harold said...

Very good falafel at the Diner on Elm/Marrakech Cafe.

Tom Aarons said...

Great photos! They're making me hungry. And I'm with Michelle. If you want local, cheap and reasonably clean, taxi drivers often know exactly where to go.