Last week we celebrated Village Voice’s 9th Annual Choice Eats tasting event. The evening featured over 50 of NYC’s favorite eats, and guests packed the house to stuff themselves with amazing dishes from each vendor, put together by the talented chefs.
One of our favorite dishes were the sticky burnt ends from Fletcher’s Brooklyn Barbecue with a side of their signature honey cornbread. Seriously amazing. Another of our favorites was yet another meat dish. We could smell the sizzling bacon from Quality Eats about 50 feet away, but what we didn’t expect was the side of jalapeno jelly and peanut butter.
We loved the spicy cold noodles from Spicy Bampa, but we couldn’t help but think that the noodles would be four times better if they weren’t cold. I guess that would make the dish seem even more spicy, so perhaps its for the best. The Handpulled Noodle‘s spicy cumin lamb ding ding chopped noodles.
In the cheese category (my favorite category), Queens Comfort served up an amazing bowl of macaroni and cheese with double smoked bacon. Raclette displayed half of a giant cheese wheel sitting under a heat lamp, where after a few minutes the chef would take the cheese wheel and scrape the melted top layer off and pour directly onto a plate of potatoes. Never seen anything quite like it, and as expected it was cheesy and amazing!
Boomwich served a Reubenese slider on a pretzel bun, and The Meatball Shop, always a crowd favorite, served shawarma ball with tahini sauce. EMMY Square, which is slated to open up soon in Williamsburg, had guests waiting around for their Detroit-style square pizza. The good thing about waiting for the pizzas to bake was that we could openly gawk at the studly chef saucing the dough.
El Quinto Pino served a delicious milk poached pork shoulder, and The Black Ant had tacos de mejillon with smoked mussels. Ofrenda Cocina Mexicana served a seafood tostada, and we loved Thai Rock‘s steamed Thai peanut dumplings.
Grandaisy Bakery had an array of different kinds of breads strewn about on their table for the taking. The chicken “dum pukht” Dahi Wala from Awadh was flavorful and light. We also loved the Peri Peri wings over mango stew from Streets BK.
Sigmund’s Pretzels had a cart filled with different flavors of their pretzels, including garlic parsley, truffle cheddar, and churro. Mable’s Smokehouse state fair Frito pie in a bag, but we secretly miss their signature BBQ meats. Luzzo’s La Pizza Napoletana served up two types of gnocci, which actually paired excellently with the tomato soup from the neighboring table of Untamed Sandwiches.
For dessert, both Doughnut Plant and Dough Doughnuts served up mini versions of what they typically sell, but that didn’t make them any less delicious. In fact, people were clawing their way to the tables to snag bites.
Butter Lane Cupcakes had a tower of mini cupcakes for the taking, and there were plenty of samples of ice cream from Victory Gardens and Ample Hills Creamery. Sweet Generation served up delicious brownie and red velvet bites, but more importantly the proceeds from their bakery helps to support their internship program for at-risk youths, teaching job readiness skills at the bakery.
Breads Bakery served generous portions of their chocolate babka, so fluffy and delicious. Sugar Couture had a variety of mini eclairs – we loved the s’mores one with authentic torched marshmallows, and we can’t wait to try the regular sized ones in the future.
Another amazing night of delicious eats and creating a new bucket list of places to check out in the future. For more info on Choice Eats and other Village Voice events, be sure to follow them on Facebook and Twitter!
Photos by Yvonne Lee