Smorgasburg 2023 Returns with Slate of New Vendors
March 24, 2023
Everyone’s favorite outdoor food market is back in Prospect Park! Kicking off its 13th season on Sunday April 2, Smorgasburg Prospect Park is back on Breeze Hill every Sunday through October. Presented in partnership with Prospect Park Alliance, this year’s Smorgasburg Prospect Park features its largest-ever lineup with over 65 vendors.
This year’s new vendor slate may be the market’s strongest since its 2011 launch, with a depth and breadth of global cuisines on offer. Highlights include baklava ice-cream sandwiches from Iran-influenced Bibi Bakery, Trinbagonian oxtail nachos from Flatbush chef Osei Blackett, giant pans of authentic Valencian paella, Malaysian beef rendang, BBQ with a Trinidadian tilt, Portuguese piri piri chicken sandwiches with a Lebanese twist, hot-pepper sauce from Trinidad, longganisa ube sliders from the Philippines, and kalacremas and tuna tostadas honoring a Dominicana’s Black roots in Mexico. The full, mouth-watering lineup of new vendors coming to Prospect Park is below:
Arirang Hibachi Steakhouse The Bay Ridge institution of tableside Japanese dining morphs into a Smorgasburg stand with their trademark fried rice (sliced and diced with chef’s flare), fried ice cream, and crispy-rice sushi. Prepare to be entertained!
Bibi Bakery Lena Derisavifard reimagines Iranian flavors to create unique pastries, inspired by the Iranian women of her childhood. With her signature spiced-walnut and cardamom-rose baklava at the heart, Bibi is adding two showstoppers to the menu: three flavors of baklava ice-cream sandwiches and an Iranian saffron snow cone known as “Frozen Gold.”
Chop Chop Tea Proudly representing the Hakka community of China, Yonglin Cheng and her team strive to serve their native cuisine to New Yorkers with a range of unique teas—black tea with grapefruit, oolong with pineapple, lime, and goji berry, green tea with green apple and cucumber—as well as perfectly spiced beef meatballs.
Cocina Consuelo Harlem’s Karina Garcia is Dominican by birth but with her husband she developed Cocina Consuelo as an ode to provincial Mexican cooking. Her tuna tostadas are as authentic as they come, as are the tacos de jalapenos. But it’s the kalacremas—cream-filled bomboloni-style donuts—that will bring the party to the yard.
Common Meadows Creamery A family-owned plant-based creamery—coconut is their base of choice—launched recently in Kingston, NY, Common Meadows’ product is smooth as silk on the tongue and an ice dream on the palette. Their matcha and espresso gelati are knockouts (the mango sorbet too), and all their products feature local and/or thoughtful purveyors in their flavorings.
Everything Oxtail From helping his mother in the kitchen growing up in Trinidad to coming to the U.S. at age 20 to pursue his culinary career to creating menus at the James Beard House and Gracie Mansion, Osei Blackett is now chef/owner of “Ariapita,” “Chef Picky Events + Catering,” and “Picky Experience” pop-ups. His concept for Smorgasburg takes the rich beefy staple of his native Trinidad, braises it to tender perfection, and incorporates it into dishes with broad appeal like plantain-oxtail nachos and fried bake and oxtail.
Jase’s BBQ Rockaway’s Jase Franklyn learned the craft of barbecue from his mother in his native Tobago. After moving to the US, he launched Jase’s BBQ in 2018 and by 2019 his jerk pork and BBQ pigtails garnered Best Food Overall at the NYC Bacon and Beer Classic. His ribs, brisket, and chicken wings—mostly grilled/smoked onsite—feature a lilt of island spice in both his rubs and sauces.
Kalye Wayne Lopez recently opened Kalye (literally “street” in Tagalog) on Broome St. on the Lower East Side, and his modern Filipino stand follows on its heels, highlighting dishes such as their spice-rich longganisa sliders (on ube buns), vinegar-marinated chicken inasal wings, and vegetarian lumpia.
Keyks World Janice de Castro’s velvety sponge cakes (“keyks”) filled with cream-cheese buttercream are a riff on the classic Hostess junk food, only these are handmade to showcase the palette of her native Philippines, with ube, pandan, jackfruit and more.
Lemak Kitchen Kesh Dhami’s faithful, concise postcard to his native Malaysia expands beyond its tiny LIC ghost kitchen roots. Featuring flavor combos that are surprising and soothing, including chicken satay redolent with herbs and spices, beef rendang served on bao buns, and a sago pudding made with tapioca pearls and gula melaka (palm sugar)..
Maca’s by Nikky Far Rockaway’s Nicole (Nikky) Guerrero started making macarons (macas) during lockdown and quickly found an audience on social media. Her seasonal character creations—snowmen, gingerbread men, pumpkins, teddy bears, and on and on—come inendless flavors with bright colors, creative displays, and soft and crunchy textures.
Mikhuy Peruvian Restaurant Less than a year after mother-daughter team Steasy and Graciela opened Mikhuy on 4th Ave. in South Slope, they are bringing their hyperfocus on authentic ingredients and Peruvian street foods to Smorgasburg. Their classic ceviche is layered with tuna salad, golden-potato terrine, lime-marinated white fish, and toasted chulpe corn kernels.
Paella Party CT Larissa Hrabec and Alberto Salas have been crushing parties in Connecticut since 2021 with their land-and-sea and traditional Valencian paellas, prepared in the classic giant paella pans. Venezuelan native Alberto pours his iconic Manhattan kitchen training and heart and soul into rich, aromatic, exquisite paella that is a feast for all.
Patok By Rach Hanna “Rach” Abada slow-roasts whole pigs Filipino-style and serves the lechon belly meat sliced as a platter, sandwich, or chopped up as sisig or inside lumpia. The rich succulent pork is fall-off tender inside with crispy skin fit for a weekend indulgence.
Tang Hulu NYC The Northern Chinese rock sugar–coated fruit skewers known as tanghulu make their Smorgasburg arrival via Chef Ivy Chen, who trained at Daniel, Nobu, and Lincoln before winning second place at the US Pastry Junior Competition and then opening her cafe Xin Xing Desserts in Parkchester in The Bronx. Ivy and partner Sizhen dip starfruit, pink pineapple, and more in sugar that quickly solidifies, then cutely display them on Chupa Chups “trees.”
Tony’s Piri Piri Antony Nassif (aka Tony Bacon) tapped into his Lebanese heritage when he came up with the recipe for his bottled piri piri, the bright and versatile Portuguese hot sauce . Now he’s kicking it up a notch with perfectly balanced charcoal-grilled chicken piri piri sammies, as well as a maitake veggie version.
Uncle Yankey’s Peppa! Growing up in Trinidad, Kevon Heath looked to pepper sauce to spice up meals that were sometimes only rice, imprinting an indelible love for the condiment. Uncle Yankey’s robust tropical pepper sauces are warm with heat but not aggressively hot.Heath is highlighting his peppa by serving pineapple chow, a Trinidadian fruit dish that adds garlic, culantro, and chili-pepper heat to create a sweet-savory salad akin to Mexican mango with tajin powder or Thai green-papaya salad.
Unregular Pasta A viral social hit concocted in Unregular’s shoebox shop on 4th Ave. in the East Village last year, these fried-pasta concoctions conjure the classic street food pasta frittata with a twist. Handmade spaghetti cacio i pepe or alla vodka is molded into a brick shape, battered in corn-flake crust, and golden-fried into a crunchy/soft comfort food with a marinara dip.
To avoid waiting on lines, this year’s market visitors will be able to quickly order from any vendor on their phones using the ChowNow app—which many New York City restaurants (and vendors) prefer for its lower fees and vendor-first ethos. All vendor menus will be available on ChowNow, with quick pickup directly from each booth. The partnership also broadens accessibility and allows for less waiting and more eating.