Tag Archives: burritos

Cachapas y Mas (Venezuelan)

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Food Truck: Capachas Y Mas

Sighting: 47th and Park

Country: Venezuela

So, I’ve already hit just about every continent on earth in my food truck travels except for one: South America. So when I saw Cachapas y Mas, a Venezuelan food truck, at 47th and Park I jumped at it, even though the grilled cheese truck next to it was calling my name. The Venezuelan truck was just calling a little louder.

Now I’m completely out of my element with Latin American cuisine. I don’t know my Cachapas from my Arepas. And so I needed a lot of help when I walked up to the window. Even with the lineup of picture, the food all kind of looked the same to me.

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The man at the window couldn’t have been nicer, though. I asked him what the most popular entrees were, and he said the Cachapa with shredded beef, as well as the Sweet Plantain Sandwich (Yoyo) with shredded chicken. Feeling adventurous, I ordered one of each. Here’s a hint for the wise–while $15 of lobster rolls may hardly fill you up, $15 of cachapas and yoyos can feed a small army. But I decided to eat one for lunch and save one for dinner later that night.

The wait was a little longer than I’m used to, about 7-10 minutes, but that’s probably because the guy in front of me was evidently ordering for his whole office.

The yoyo came wrapped in foil paper, while the cachapa came in a styrofoam container.

I decided to eat the cachapa first.
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Like many foods of Latin America, the cachapa is a maize-based flatbread inside of which goes delicious filling. In this case, the bread was soft and flat cake that was like cornbread–the flavor was subtly sweet and delicious. Inside was lettuce, tomato, a white sauce, and the shredded beef which reminded me of a cross between a sloppy joe and pulled pork. It was sweet, tender, and chewy. The cachapa itself filled me up quickly.

Later that night I tried the yoyo.

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Again, this was excellent. The outer breading was deep fried plantain, and its sweetness balanced very well with the savory shredded chicken and vegetables inside. Perhaps it’s because I let it sit for a few hours, but I found the outside to be a bit too greasy for me; my lesson learned is probably that I should eat it as soon as I get it.

But overall, it was a satisfying and filling culinary journey that saved me both a trip to South America and to Inwood (Cachapas Y Mas’s brick-and-mortar restaurant is located on Dyckman Street at the northern tip of Manhattan). Now that I’ve tried the “Cachapas”, next time I see them roll around I’ll need to try the “Y Mas”.

4 of 5

Price I paid: About $7-8 per sandwich

Line: 7-10 minutes

Tricks for fast ordering: If you haven’t decided by the time you get in the front and see the massive menu staring back at you you’re in for a lot of trouble. Make sure you study the menu beforehand and know what you’re in the mood for in terms of your wrapping (cachapas, arepas, patacons, yoyos, tacuchos, or pepitos) and then your filling (queso, jamon, carne, pollo, etc.) so you can order quickly.

What to order if you’re a newbie: Cachapa with Queso Venezolano–the classic Venezuelan street food.

The menu:

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On the Web:

Capachas Y Mas

On Facebook

Haab NYC (Mexican)

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Food Truck: Haab NYC

Sighting: 47th and Park

Country: Mexican

I have sort of the same relationship with Mexican food as I do with Indian food–I don’t necessarily find myself craving it very often but there have been moments in my life when I’ve had really, really good Mexican food and

The Haab NYC truck is an interesting one in that it’s fairly nondescript. It’s actually hard to tell at first sight what nationality it represents–there’s a faded, barely-readable sign on top that say “Tacos” and the front of the truck says “haab”. The truck looks like it was outfitted with neon lights that say things like “Patty’s” and “Taco’s” but those lights are never turned on. By the window there’s a sign that says “Aguas Frescas” and underneath it “Jamaica Soda”.

jamaican soda capIn fact, at first I thought it was a Jamaican food truck, but then I realized that it had Tacos and Burritos, so I finally realized it was Mexican (in fact the Jamaican soda is made in Mexico).

A lot of people think that what you find at Chipolte, Qdoba, and Baha Fresh is real Mexican food, but that’s like saying that what you find at P.F. Chang’s or Panda Express is real Chinese food (hint: it’s not). When I was in southern California I had the pleasure of going to some authentic Mexican eateries and have enjoyed (they’re usually tiny holes in the ground, the tinier the better).

As with many food trucks, this one is essentially the mobile version of a restaurant. Haab NYC itself is a Mexican restaurant in Brooklyn (East Williamsburg to be exact). If you read the Yelp reviews, you’ll get the typical kvetching about service and alcohol, but the reviews of the food itself are mostly very good.

The menu is pretty intimidating when you first look at it. I like food trucks with a simple list of choices or if that’s not possible, a simple process to order. Haab NYC lists out every single food option on their menu, about 50 total menu items to choose from. But it’s a little less intimidating when you look at them in their basic food groups: Tacos, Quesadillas, Tortas, Burritos, Enchiladas, Fajitas.

I asked the woman at the window what the most popular entrees are and she told me the burritos, specifically the Crazy Burrito and the California Burrito. Because I never like to hold up a food truck line I panicked and just told her I wanted the Crazy. Turns out the difference is that Crazy = Chorizo and California = Steak. While I probably would have preferred the steak, the chorizo was just fine with me. I also ordered one of those Jamaican sodas.

The wait wasn’t too bad, under 5 minutes. Pretty impressive given that there were two people ahead of me in line and my burrito wasn’t “pre-wrapped”.

Here’s what the platter looked like back at my desk:

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And the innards.

inside the burrito

As you can see, this was a real honest-to-goodness burrito, stuffed to every last millimeter with goodness. While it still paled in comparison to the burritos I had in Southern California, it was worlds better than what I’d find at places like Chipolte as far as the seasoning, the taste, and the portions (which was dangerously nap-inducing in the office). I also appreciated the side of guacamole and fresh salsa.

By the end of my meal I was as stuffed as that burrito and very, very satisfied.

4.5 of 5 stars.

Price I paid: $9.50

Line: 5 minutes

Tricks for fast ordering: Study the extensive menu in advance and while a lot of the menu is in English, make sure your Spanish is up-to-date for those things that have no translation. Chorizo=sausage. Carnitas=braised pork, Al Pastor=thinly sliced pork shoulder, Chilquiles=stuff over cut tortillas, Guacamole=yummy

What to order if you’re a newbie: California Burrito or Crazy Burrito

The menu:
mexican food truck menu

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On Twitter:


On the Web:

Haab NYC (Website appears to currently be down)