I had to put my New York posts on hold due to the pandemic and I was waiting for the right time to write this review. The pandemic had us in quarantine and socially distancing, but now as we slowly reopen I am glad this legendary street vendor has opened up again so more people (and the usuals) get to taste his food again! Read below to learn more about this legendary vendor and what I thought of his food.
This was the video I saw to find out Dosa Man, and ever since I saw that video I knew I had to go and try his food. If I am being honest, the main reason why I wanted to go to New York on this trip was to try out his food, because I know he wasn’t going to have his cart for much longer, and thank God I did. I highly recommend, watching the full video above to learn why he is so beloved and what makes people from all over the world visit his cart!
His iconic street food kart (under the name NY Dosas) is located in the vibrant Washington Square Park. The exact location is 50 Washington Square S, New York, NY 10012, United States. It’s definitely a cool place to check out and spacious enough because there is pretty much a line up (moves quickly) guaranteed for the Dosa Man.
Usually when I talk about service in my reviews its about the staff at a restaurant but with Dosa Man it’s usually just a two-man operation. Mr. Thiru Kumar handling the cooking with someone else assisting him when needed. Nonetheless, the service was amazing because despite the long line he was really efficient yet friendly. He had two different lines and had different payment options as well. It was awesome to see that he actually knows his returning customers and their preferences.
What made this an outstanding highlight on my trip was that he was actually much more awesome in person. When going through the menu I asked him about the kottu roti (popular Sri Lankan Tamil dish) and it just sparked an incredible conversation about Sri Lanka, our villages, and more. He said talking to my family and I really made him so happy, and it certainly did the same for us.
So I know this is probably the part of this review you are most keen on reading, and rightfully so. If I am being honest, I am confused about how his food was healthy yet delicious, and vegan at the same time. In my experiences, having all three of those things being great is hard to come by. I am not being biased at all, you can ask any of the other customers and they’ll agree. These are common South Asian meals that he makes with efficiency and skill by having the perfect balance of ingredients and flavours resulting in something that is not excessively oily, fatty, or spicy which is commonly seen with these dishes.
We tried a couple of different things off the menu, obviously some of the items were not available but we are satisfied that we were able to try these items that you would probably want to try as well. The items were the Masala Dosa, Special Pondicherry, Jaffna Lunch, Hand Grilled Veggie Rotis, and a Samosa.
First things first, that was the best samosa I ever had in my life. It tasted phenomenal, had a great balance of spice, flavour, and texture. When it comes to food I do appreciate authenticity, uniqueness, and delicious balance of flavour and texture. Although it was pretty consistent throughout the dosas, my favorite meal has to be the Pondicherry. I truly didn’t expect to like his food as much as I did, it was definitely a pleasant surprise. I really like the different veggies, and texture of the dosa (it had the right amount of flakiness that made it easy to eat). It was easy to eat and tasted great. I would say the Jaffna special is not for everyone, especially those who are not accustomed to spicy food, like Ben from Never Have I Ever. Remember, this is dried chutney so it is different from the others. The masala dosa was solid and the chutney does add more flavour to it so I would recommend it but if you really don’t want to, it will still taste good either way. I would definitely recommend trying it out for yourself, and I would love to go again and try the other items but the items I will for sure order again would be the Pondicherry dosa along with some samosas and veggie rotis.
I do believe the price is affordable, and you definitely get your money’s worth. One thing I hate about trying popular places is that often it is not filling, especially for the price you pay. Thankfully, Dosa Man is known for his affordable pricing which is why so many college students actually buy from him. If you were to compare it to prices in Markham or Scarborough, who have quite a few restaurants that sell similar items for only a few dollars less but does not nearly taste as good.
Would I go again?
The answer is absolutely yes! Not only was the food great, it really filled us all up and was affordable. On top of that, Mr. Thiru Kumar aka Dosa Man was awesome not just to us but everyone. Although it is just him and his cart, he provides such a positive atmosphere along with delicious food which is why people constantly come back and come from far just to eat his food. I hope once everything gets better I would be able to eat his food again, and I hope so do you wherever you are reading this. Nonetheless, I am happy he’s back in the park and still making this awesome food and memories for more people to enjoy!
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