If you’ve had enough of kosher Chinese food or shwarma, there’s a new option for lunch: waffles.
A new food truck, Quick Stop Kosher, is traveling around Manhattan offering kosher-certified sandwiches, omelets, sushi, blintzes and waffles. This week the truck is parked on 33rd Street and Ninth Avenue, outside the Jewish-owned B&H Photo.
Tagged “the moving kosher experience,” it has staked out spots near Mount Sinai Hospital on the Upper East Side and on the corner of 52nd Street and Lexington Avenue. Their website and a Twitter account are updated every morning with the truck’s location.
“Our goal is to be every day once a week in a different location,” said Ari Thaler, owner and manager, “so people will know our truck, our food, our service.” Waffle making is a family affair: Thaler’s uncle, Motti Thaler, sells kosher Belgian waffles in Denver.
The most popular offerings are the hot Belgian waffles and falafel sandwiches. The batter for the waffles is flown frozen from Belgium and cooked freshly on the truck, and the falafel mix is purchased from the popular Moshe’s Falafel truck and fried on site. For $5.50 you get a waffle topped with chocolate sauce and whipped cream — an extra dollar adds ice cream and fresh fruit.
The waffles are dense and sweet, with uneven edges, like the Liège style of waffles, popular in the eastern Belgian town. Falafel sandwiches are $5.50 and paninis are $7. In the summer the truck offers frozen slushies, and when the weather cools, soups will be added to the menu.
The waffles “are something different — we want to attract new people,” said Thaler, who says he serves a mixed clientele of kosher and not kosher consumers. The brightly decorated cart, complete with a cartoon image of Thaler in a white suit and fedora, hit midtown in the beginning of July.
“I’ve eaten at it a bunch of times,” said Dani Klein, founder and editor of YeahThatsKosher.com. He was excited to hear that the cart was parked near his office on 23rd Street, since “we have kosher nearby, but you have to walk.”
Klein tried the falafel, “which is really, really good,” and also enjoyed the Belgian waffle. “It’s definitely a necessary thing to have a kosher truck or kosher van that offers lower prices.”
Jeff Weinstein read about the truck at the blog MidtownLunch.com, then checked it out when it was near his office. “The falafel was terrific,” he said, calling it “bigger and tastier” than a nearby restaurant .
There are few kosher food trucks in Manhattan. Moshe’s Falafel has two trucks, and a Kosher Oasis truck – serving schnitzel, burgers and falafel – popped up last December, but disappears for months at a time; the phone number is out of service. In May a new healthy truck – Green Taste – appeared briefly, but hasn’t been spotted since;
Quick Stop Kosher is certified Cholov Yisrael and Pas Yisrael by Rabbi Pinchus Horowitz in Brooklyn.