Taïm is my favorite and often mentioned falaferie in NYC and have been eating there for years off-the-record (as in not photographed/blogged). Something’s in those crispy orbs of ground chickpeas are magical (possibly crack?); it’s not dense nor greasy. Their smoothies lean on the unusual side when it comes to flavors (for me, it’s a good thing) such as strawberry and Thai basil or their signature flavor, date, lime and banana.
Around spring of 2010, I read around that Taïm’s rolling out their food truck. When I read that, I can imagine every Taïm fan in New York City rejoicing (even myself). Except, I was inundated with grad school priorities and work, it prohibited me to get my butt to Taïm Mobile Truck.
I finally managed to squeeze in time to eat there after a canceled meeting. When I visited, it was on a dreary, rainy Friday afternoon and Taïm’s truck was parked in Midtown East, near Park Avenue. I met a friendly face, which turned out to be the truck’s manager, Nektarios Ioannidis (which is owned by Taïm and Balaboosta‘s owner, Chef Einat Admony). Nek is a very cool guy to talk to when he’s not busy taking orders during the lunch rush.
Anyway, here’s what I ate with a friend:
We started out with their smoothies – pineapple-coconut and strawberry-raspberry-Thai basil ($5.50 each). The pineapple coconut appeals to my friend as she loves anything tropical flavored. I tasted a sip and tastes like real coconut with sweet pineapple flavor in the background with a slightly viscous texture (that’s how smoothies should be, in my book). My berries and Thai basil smoothie was refreshing, especially from the pungent basil undertone running through the lush berry flavor. If I were on a diet, which I’m not, these smoothies could almost be considered lunch since it does fill your stomach a bit.
I ordered the day’s featured falafel, red pepper and had it in the sandwich form ($5.75). This awesome sandwich (my favorite form of eating their falafel) was stuffed in a warm, pillowy pita bread, hummus, Israeli salad and tahini sauce. It’s a mixture of creamy (tahini), crunchy (salad), and crisp (freshly fried falafel) in every messy bite.
Along with the sandwich, I had the french fries with saffron aioli ($3). The fries were on the limp and soggy side, which I would blame the humidity since it’s an awfully rainy afternoon. But the aioli is still as awesome as the restaurant serves it. It’s rich, velvety, and intensely flavored of saffron and other spices. If I could get my grubby hands on that recipe, I would make it by the gallon, save it the fridge and use it for many different applications.
My friend had a bigger appetite and had the green falafel platter ($9.50). This large portion of fresh Israeli salad, quinoa salad, hummus and a warm, white pita drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and zahatar and freshly fried orbs of zesty, green falafel.
Nothing has changed in regards to the quality, if you want to compare the food from the restaurant to the truck. The food is every bit as delicious and satisfying. It helps to know that your belly isn’t full of meat and it’s a nice change from eating meat so often. This is definitely one of the better, affordable lunch options to have around in Midtown.