I don’t know if you guys know this or not, but there is a bunch of hullabaloo over halal carts in New York City.
You can find them on street corners all over the city, but there is one that’s pretty much known as the best one, the one you have to go to if you’re going to get street food. That would be The Halal Guys, whose slogan is “We are Different.”
There are quite a few imposters around, but the way you know you’re getting the real deal is by the location AND the time. Make sure you check the location section of their website, because they warn that other vendors at these spots during any other hours are not affiliated with them. Their website also lists specific things you should look-out for such as the color of their sign, what’s on their umbrellas, the servers’ uniforms, and the kind of bag you get your food in. You can tell that they really tried to cover their bases so that they aren’t mistaken with any of those other fakes!
Halal Guys started in 1990 when one of the company’s partners opened a hot dog cart on West 53rd and 6th Avenue. He saw that there was a demand among Muslim cab drivers for a halal Muslim meal, so they changed the kind of food they served. Today, they’ve gone national, and The Halal Guys Inc. is a federal registered company with a registered trademark, name, logo, and slogan. Amazing, huh?
The menu is pretty standard–platters and sandwiches with either chicken, gyro lamb, or both. The platters come with rice, lettuce, and slices of pita bread. The gyro platter with rice is always my go-to order. The Halal Guys is also famous for their condiments, being their fiery hot sauce and “white sauce.” It’s a little bit of a mystery what the white sauce actually is (probably some combination of yogurt and mayo), but everyone I know is obsessed with it. I mean look at that picture I took. Obviously I went a little crazy with the white sauce. Also, do NOT put as much hot sauce as I did. My mouth was on fire but I couldn’t stop eating because it was just too good. It’s just so tempting because they have squeeze bottles of both sauces on the side of their cart so you can add as much or as little as you want. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!
I know the picture may not be that appealing, but believe me. This is some stand-out halal food. If you’ve never had halal fast food before and you try this, you’re probably going to be spoiled. If you have had it before, come here and see what really top quality stuff tastes like. All for like $6. There’s often a line at their original location, so be prepared. Hey, that might help you spot the real thing though.
What other food stand do you know that has 4.5 stars on Yelp and 5,639 reviews? Yes, 5,639. The Halal Guys even has it’s own Wikipedia page. Did I mention that this place is LEGIT?
Gyro over rice
6th Ave & W 53rd St
New York, NY 10019