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NYC Food Truck Lunch: Chicken Plantini From Monkey Brothers Lab

(credit: New York Street Food)

(credit: New York Street Food)

Street Lunch

Perry, the voice behind New York Street Food, brings you his latest review on New York City food trucks.

One of the more mythological new food trucks around town is Monkey Brothers Lab. They don’t use Twitter or seem to have a regular schedule, so searching for them is difficult. If you happen to see Monkey Brothers Lab on the street, take it as a sign, and give them a try.

The menu is an amalgamation of street foods, with several varieties of cheese steaks, burgers, tacos, burritos, quesadillas, rice bowls, and a few other items.

What really caught our attention was the Plantini, which ranges in price from $8-$10, depending upon whether you get a chicken, burger or steak plantini. So what exactly is a plantini?

More Truck Lunch: Chickpea Burger From Green Radish Truck

(credit: New York Street Food)

(credit: New York Street Food)

There are many things you can use to make a sandwich, whether it’s a roll, baguette, or pressed bread like a panini. In the case of a plantini, they use smashed, fried plantains as the “bread”.

Using fried plantains for the bun is a Latin-American invention, where plantains are plentiful. We haven’t seen this much in midtown, but there is a popular Venezuelan food truck called Patacon Pisao that parks uptown in Inwood, who was a 2010 Vendy Awards Finalist. They serve patacones, which are similar to plantinis.

Fried plantains are soft and semi-sweet, but when fried, they are strong enough to hold everything together.

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Inside the plantains were a bunch of different goodies. There were pieces of marinated chicken, lettuce, tomato, two kinds of cheese and carrots.

(credit: New York Street Food)

(credit: New York Street Food)

Everything inside was delicious, especially when you order the optional garlic sauce. If you do, make sure you have mints before talking to anyone after lunch, because it’s very garlicky!

The other thing we enjoyed were thin, crispy potato sticks they put on top of the sandwich. We’ve always been a big fan of potato sticks, and these added both taste and crunch to the plantini.

As we said, Monkey Brothers Lab doesn’t use twitter, but we caught up with them on 46th St east of 6th Ave, and have also seen them around Park Ave & 47th St. We understand they sometimes show up downtown in the Financial District, too.

They may have a strange name and logo, but Monkey Brothers Lab is not an experiment gone awry, but a tasty NYC food truck.