As street vendors go, the Jamaican Dutchy is impressively wired. Hounds who lunch around 51st Street and Seventh Avenue can spot it by its satellite dish and plasma screen. Just why a food cart needs either is a mystery, but early reports suggest that the fancy hardware is backed up by fresh, robust chow.
“Really good, and a refreshing change from the normal Midtown lunch,” says john, who finds its jerk chicken spicy and well cooked. Curry chicken, flavorful but low-burn, comes with sautéed sweet plantains and well-seasoned rice and peas, Puddle reports. The ambitious rotating menu also offers oxtail, curry goat, and several fish dishes—which may or may not actually be available. Service is not quite up to speed, and the wait can be long. Don’t go too late in the day.
On 56th Street a few blocks north—and a world away from Koreatown—a mostly-takeout spot called Pro Bagel serves decent premade kalbi (barbecued beef short rib), bibim bap (with or without meat), and other tasty Korean food alongside the more common sandwiches, wraps, and boxed sushi. “This is not up to the K-town greats,” acknowledges mr_seabass, “but it is a superb quick lunch.” Here, too, they tend to run out of food, so it’s wise to arrive early—”but not that early that they sell out before I can get mine!” he adds.
In the Diamond District, four floors above 47th Street, El Rincon del Sabor dishes up generous portions of hearty chow from Ecuador. maria_nyc is partial to rabo guisado (stewed oxtail), available on Wednesdays. Also on the daily-changing menu: sancocho (meat soups); shrimp ceviche; grilled pork or beefsteak; tallarin con pollo (pasta with chicken); fried trout, tilapia, and other fish; beef, chicken, lamb, or tongue stews; and more, all served with rice, beans, and salad.
Pro Bagel [Midtown]
62 W. 56th Street (between Fifth and Sixth avenues), Manhattan
El Rincon del Sabor [Diamond District]
74 W. 47th Street (between Fifth and Sixth avenues), Fourth Floor, Manhattan