The Vendy Awards, the first and largest street food event series in the country, is an annual event to benefit the Street Vendor Project at the Urban Justice Center, a membership-based organization that provides advocacy and legal services for more than 1,500 vendor members. The Vendys, which have been New York City’s most beloved street food competition for nine years, has expanded nationally to include events in Los Angeles, Philadelphia, New Orleans, and Chicago.
This year over 1,000 NY area foodies (myself included) flocked to Industry City in Brooklyn last Saturday to cast their vote on their favorite food truck (as well as sample some of their goodies). Here is a look at the winners and highlights!
The Vendy Cup (Top Prize)
A team of foodie industry judges—which this year consisted of Pat LaFrieda, Francis Lam, Garrett Oliver, Lauren Purcell, Elettra Wiedemann, and Justin Warner—selected the winner of the physical Vendy Cup and this year, the Red Hook based El Olomega took home the gold (or silver). This Salvadoran truck is know for their variety of pupusas, a traditional snack from El Salvador made of corn flour (Maseca) stuffed with various flavors of food like, pork, chicken, shrimp, loroco flower, cheese, and beans.
|Courtesy of El Olomega|
King Souvlaki - Astoria based Greek style truck famous for their souvlaki and fries platter.
Luke's Lobster - NYC based seafood truck and restaurant known for their lobster rolls, crab rolls, shrimp rolls, crab claws and bisques. They didn't take home the Vendy Cup but they did win the People's Taste Award - not surprising given the line for this truck was at full capacity during the entire event.
The Cinnamon Snail - Vegan and Organic Food Truck serving gourmet meals and baked goods. Their creative donuts are to die for and were my personal favorites at the event.
Best Dessert: Itizy Ice Cream
Best Market Vendor: Khao Man Ghai
Best of New Jersey: Home by the Range (also winner of Tide's Messy Yet Tasty Award)
Rookie of the Year: Nuchas
About the Cause: The Street Vendor Project is a membership-based project with more than 1,500 active vendor members who are working together to create a vendors’ movement for permanent change. The Street Vendor Project is part of the Urban Justice Center, a non-profit organization that provides legal representation and advocacy to various marginalized groups of New Yorkers. To join their list of supporters, please click here