Last I left you I was still in recovery mode from the 5th annual Harlem EatUp! festival. After which I went straight into a birthday Memorial Day Weekend celebration in Montreal and my first time in Canada ever, which I will regale here in the weeks to come. For now, I must close the circle on the “subway series” weekend for Harlem EatUp! in Morningside Park and the second annual The World’s Fare at Citi Field in Queens.
First things first, thank heavens for the great weather over the weekend. It might have been a little hot but compared to last year in the rain and mud, we will take it. Vendors loaded in early and got ready for the doors to open at noon. The exceptional event production team was at the ready to make sure all went smoothly.
Before we knew it, the tents were poppin’, Harlem’s best bites were flying into people’s mouths, DJ Stormin’ Norman was burning up the wheels and the celebration had begun. I made sure to make it around and check on all of our vendors…and get my bites in before they were gone.
There was a nice combination of OGs and newbies in the mix. The OGs like LoLo’s Seafood Shack, Harlem Shake, Melba’s and Charles Pan Fried Chicken were putting in work with their unique dishes and flavors. Newbies like Greedy Pot, Tastings Social presents Gaudir and Bar 314 (from the owners of babbalucci) were laying claim too with exceptional bites.
I stepped over to the Macy’s Main Stage to catch our first host of The Stroll, Bevy Smith, setting the tone of the weekend and warming up the stage for cooking demos with Harlem and national chefs and musical performances by Harlem musicians such as the Rakiem Walker Project and Vy Higgensen’s Sing Harlem Choir. It was truly a
On Sunday I switched work hats from associate producer to official tastemaker as I headed out to Citi Field to lend my palate to a collection of international foods at The World’s Fare. With my food ace, Jameale Arzeno, in tow we set out to systematically make it to all of the vendors. Cut to the third plate of food…we had to slow down. There were over 100 vendors to go.
Our first bite, and one of my favorites, came from @InPatella with their seafood paella. The bomba rice was cooked to perfection and seasoned for the gods. After some satisfying jalapeno cheddar @BabasPierogies, we moved on to Zen Yai Thai for super rich and delicious curry. Then on to the Africa section for Eritrean wot taco on injera bread from AD Catering & Events and to the winner for best savory, W.A.R. (West African Restaurant) Pop Up for their jollof rice and chicken.
Special shout-outs to Harlem vendors @SylviasSoulFood, @AnArtisticTaste, @RoosterBoyNYC and @DannyMacaroons for participating and to @Troy_Table for that wicked good ital jerk oyster mushroom dish and to @MeskaSweets for that truly delicious orange blossom kosher Moroccan cookie. Perfect last bite of the weekend.
I absolutely love what I do and I am grateful to all for the opportunity to do it. Thank you again to Herb and Dawn, the Karlitz & Co team, to Marcus and his team at MSG, to food documentarian Liza de Guia, Schneps Media and the whole World’s Fare team, too. I appreciate you.
Happy eating and thanks for reading!
Kysha Harris is a food writer and editor, culinary producer, consultant and owner of SCHOP!, a personalized food service in NYC for over 15 years. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram, @SCHOPgirl, on Facebook, /SCHOPnyc, and her blog, www.talkingSCHOP.wordpress.com. Questions? Comments? Requests? Feedback? Invitations! Email AmNewsFOOD at AmNewsFOOD@SCHOPnyc.com. Follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook @NYAmNewsFOOD and tag us with #SoAmNewsFOOD with your food finds!