Food Truck: Uncle Gussy’s
Sighting: 51st and Park
If Uncle Gussy ran the Greek economy, I think Greece would probably be one of the world’s top financial superpowers. Every day I walk by there’s a huge line and I wonder what the fuss is, as you can get Mediterranean food on any street corner.
Unlike other trucks, Gussy’s seems to have a pretty permanent location on 51st and Park, right in front of St. Bart’s.
So I got on line, which was about 15-20 minutes long when I went there at high noon.
The nice thing about the line is that it gives you lots of time to study the menu. They split it into four easy steps: you pick a meat or veggie; you pick whether you want it to come with rice, on a sandwich or with a salad; you pick a sauce; and you pick optional extras.
I chose the combo platter, which consists of chicken and lamb. Normally I can’t stand to eat lamb, but for some reason when they mash it up into gyro form I love it. You get some yellow rice with the platter. I also got it “with the works”. which meant both tzatziki sauce and hot sauce, grilled onions, and a little salad of your own of lettuce and tomatoes.
Even though the line was long, unlike other food trucks where you need to gather around and wait like you’re in the DMV, once you’re at the front of this one you get your order seconds after you place it. So while I waited around 15 minutes, the end-to-end time when you consider the line and waiting for the food is about comparable.
Here’s what mine looked like:
Warning. If you attempt to eat more than half of this, you’d better cancel all your meetings for the afternoon because you are going to be sound asleep within 20 minutes. It is filling but oh so good. You get good generous chunks of chicken and gyro meat, perfectly cooked al dente rice, and a nice kick with the sauce. The lettuce and tomato know their place–they are to rally the troops and lead them as they march their way down your GI tract.
I got about 75% through mine and couldn’t go on. Maybe an afternoon snack.
Dollar for dollar, this is probably one of the best deals you’ll get for lunch in Manhattan. Personally, this isn’t the kind of meal I’ll eat every day or even every week, it’s sort of a once-every-few-months thing. But still, it’s nice to know they’re there anytime you need them. They are most certainly one of the tops as far as Mediterranean cuisine in a truck goes.
4.5 of 5 stars.
Price I paid: $7.50
Line: Very long, but instant gratification when you finally reach the end
Tricks for fast ordering: Don’t be intimidated by the choices. Learn the four steps and be able to rattle them off quickly.
What to order if you’re a newbie: Combo Platter with the Works
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