New York City’s Pop-Up Dining Scene Broadway Bites

by Culinary Spelunker / Oct 23, 2017 /
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Japanese okonomiyaki. Arepas. Turkish street food. Bento boxes. Just-fried empanadas. Taiwanese-style bao. Paella. Trying to decide what to eat at Broadway Bites is a mouth-watering challenge.
 

Wedged between Broadway and 6th Avenue in Greeley Square, not far from Madison Square Garden and Penn Station, Broadway Bites bills itself as a pop-up eatery. The collection of creative eats includes influences from across the world.
 
We didn’t run across Broadway Bites on any maps or reviews – we discovered it from following our noses. Vendors are seemingly on every street corner in New York City, constantly wafting marinated, skewered meats and other tempting tastes from early in the morning until well after dark.
 
But the mix of earthy spices (I’d credit the arepas) with umami undertones (from any number of the Asian eateries) engulfed us as we were walking up Broadway from the Flatiron building toward Bryant Park.

New York City’s Pop-Up Dining Scene Broadway Bites

The first time we walked through we stopped for chocolate-filled croissants from one of the bakeries, since we’d already eaten lunch.
 
We promised our kids we’d return the next day.

New York City’s Pop-Up Dining Scene Broadway Bites
 
When we did, we counted at least 10 different food stands, representing cuisine from around the globe. I found myself repeating again and again, “I’ve never had that,” as my kids kept pointing in different directions, also trying to decide what to have.
 
Of our group of four, each person got food from a different vendor. That’s one of the many draws of Broadway Bites – no one has to agree on the same type of food, you can all pick your own. The quaint outdoor setting, with plentiful seating is also a plus.

New York City’s Pop-Up Dining Scene Broadway Bites
 
Besides global cuisine, some offerings were twists of traditional American favorites, like Chick’ N Cone. The aptly named vendor offers up crisped chicken pieces served in handmade waffle cones. Yes, it’s like a fried chicken ice cream cones. And then there’s Jars by Dani – all the makings of a cupcake, but served in mini mason jars. Think layer of cake followed by fluffy frosting then toppings like chocolate chips or sprinkles and then another layer, and another.

New York City’s Pop-Up Dining Scene Broadway Bites
 
After pacing twice from one end of Broadway Bites to the other and back again, we each lined up at a different spot. My husband filled up on bao – impossibly moist, fluffy savory, filled buns. My youngest decided on Korean barbecue. For my 16-year-old she had only one thing on her mind: noodles. Her choice was from Mian Kitchen and a brothy bowl of noodles. Two noodles, actually. The seemingly four-foot long noodles were an inch-wide and had a chewy bite and looked like they’d been hand rolled.

New York City’s Pop-Up Dining Scene Broadway Bites
 
As for me, the intriguing scent of cilantro, garlic and smoky pork kept drawing me back to Bolivian Llama Party. I ordered a couple of chola sandwiches – the triple pork that packed both braised pork shoulder and bacon, along with a barbecue chicken variety that was coated with a tangy cilantro-cream sauce. The person in front of me ordered a big stack of papitas – thin-cut fries paired with various sauces and seasonings like curry or cayenne, served in a paper cone.

New York City’s Pop-Up Dining Scene Broadway Bites

I nearly ordered their take on poutine – a pile of French fries with pieces of crisped bacon and a drizzling of cream sauce finished of with cubes of fried cheese. Maybe next time.

New York City’s Pop-Up Dining Scene Broadway Bites
 
If you go, Broadway Bites is only open seasonally for the fall through November 10. But Urbanspace, which brings together the eclectic mix of eateries, has other locations throughout New York City, including some indoors at like the one near Grand Central Station and the outdoor TSQ MKT open year round in Times Square.  

New York City’s Pop-Up Dining Scene Broadway Bites

Kristen J. Gough is the Global Cuisines & Kids Editor for Wandering Educators. She shares her family's adventurous food experiences--and recipes--at MyKidsEatSquid.com.

 

All photos courtesy and copyright Kristen J. Gough