GOOD BBQ is a tall order here in NYC. Having lived in TX and traveled to TN, I have sampled some succulent fare in my time. Here in NY, ever chasing the elusive/delicious BBQ, I have had my share of stinkers. I enjoy a good brisket, but my dish of choice is pulled pork. It's what I'm mostly likely to order at each restaurant and compare to previous samplings. I was discussing this with my friend MK, a BBQ aficionado. She had just returned from South Carolina, where she and her boyfriend had eaten both praiseworthy and paltry offerings.
While discussing this with MK, the craving hit us, and I remembered Daisy May's BBQ--located at 46th street and 11th Avenue-- has a renowned cart somewhere in midtown. We (having finished most of our work for the day anyway, mind you) quickly set about googling, and almost simultaneously found the answer: IT WAS ONE BLOCK AWAY FROM US. Does God really intervene when it comes to something as simple as a hankering for a hunk of pork? It sure seemed like it today.
We bundled up and dashed outside, braving the brisk, icy wind for some quick and affordable street meat. We both ordered the pulled pork ($8 for the generous portion of meat, roll & cole slaw), and opted to split a mason jar of their mint sweet tea! MINT!!!
Once inside, we excitedly unpacked our goodies and began to assemble the deliciousness. The meat had a smoky, mustardy smell (I love mustard-based sauces). It had a distinct flavor I couldn't quite place, but MK nailed it as cloves. We could also taste molasses and/or brown sugar and cumin. Mmm...cumin. Smells like body odor, tastes like heaven. Go figure. The pork was tender, probably hickory-smoked, and delicious, though we both agreed there was a bit too much sauce. I like a light drizzling of sauce atop my pulled pork-this serving was almost swimming in it. We surmised it's probably to keep it from drying out since everything is packed up in a mobile cart, far away from the "Mother ship," as the cart's signage refers to the restaurant. The roll did an excellent job of absorbing a lot of the excess sauce, and there is clearly enough meat in here if you want to eat half now and half later (I opted for all of it at once. Yayyyy, PMS week!)
The mint sweet tea costs 4 dollars, which initially had me saying hell to the no. Then I saw that it came in a Mason jar, and I offered to split it with Mel. It's DEFINITELY a two-portion serving. The sweet tea was sweet, but in the most wonderful of ways. Sometimes sweet tea can be SO sweet that it makes your teeth hurt. This tea was a perfect balance: strong tea flavor with just enough sweetness to make you smile. The mint wasn't as strong as I expected, but that was just fine. Mel let me have the glass that had the fresh mint sprig. She's a good friend. ;) I was actually sad when I took my last few sips of this tea.
A good friend is also someone who takes cheesy photos of you (read: me) without judging you (again: me). Just one of her many wonderful qualities.
So this sandwich might not be the world's best BBQ, but on a day when some tasty, tender pulled pork is all I wanted, this definitely came close enough. And that sweet tea will have me coming back again, especially once it starts warming up outside!