#SCBD take on the 8th Annual Vendy Awards

This past Saturday, I had the pleasure of attending The 8th Annual Vendy Awards on Governor’s Island. It was a perfect, beautiful day too! It was also my first & hopefully not last year attending the Vendy’s. The entire subway ride to Governor’s Island Station I was preparing myself for how much food I’d be eating.

Just in case you didn’t know already, The Vendy Awards are an annual event organized by Street Vendor Project at the Urban Justice Center, a membership-based organization ofmore than 1,500 vendors. SVP’s famed Vendy Awards have determined New York City’s top street chef for 8 years, and have become one of the most beloved and widely-anticipated food events in New York, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia.

If you’ve seen my previous posts, you know I am a huge supporter of street vendors! I also constantly see their tweets so it was great to see some of the vendors I always read about in their zone and serving up their best dishes. It was a constant debate– sweet or savory? I had to have a little bit of both. It was a rough 5-6 hours of eating & I started my day with Uncle Gussy’s.  See some of my food pictures below:

It was great to be there on behalf of Small Chick Big Deals & New Fork City & meet more foodies including OMG Foodie, NYC Foodie Finder, & more! I have never been so overwhelmed by so much great food in my life! I have so much respect for food truck vendors because you can always see their passion in the food they make & how they approach their customers. I feel like bloggers, they are the underdog of the food industry but love what they do and may even do it better than people expect! I was really happy that I was able to try the Vendy cup winner before the awards started, I loved their dish!

Before I announce who the winners were, I want to share some pics my foodie friend, NYC Foodie Finder took, you can also follow her @nycfoodiefinder, see more, here:

Now without further a due, here are the winners of the Vendy awards:

The Vendy Cup: Piaztlan Authentic Mexican

Best Dessert: Melt Bakery

Best Market Vendor: Lumpia Shack

Rookie of the Year: Phil’s Steaks

People’s Taste Award: Cinnamon Snail

The Most Heroic Vendor award went  to Bay Ridge halal vendor Sammy Kassem, who was honored for withstanding immense opposition from anti-vendor business owners in his community.

It was the perfect day & event filled with food, meeting new friends, & of course quenching our thirst with some wine & GuS Soda! It was great to meet & see the vendors in action! Congrats to all the winners & nominees — keep it up!

I’ll be back with my coverage on the post Vendy’s NYCFTA Food Truck Rally soon enough!! These events were just the beginning!

TTFN– Happy Eating!!! 😀

 

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In case you missed the Unveiling of the #SCBD, Sarah Smile cupcake…

This past Friday was the unveiling of the #SCBD, Sarah Smile cupcake at Jarets Stuffed Cupcakes in Totowa, NJ. If you are an avid #SCBD follower you know I wrote about them this past March, see here. It was a great experience to team up with Maureen Jaret, the owner of Stuffed Cupcakes on my perfect cupcake. The Sarah Smile cupcake has vanilla & chocolate cake, caramel fondant inside, and is topped with vanilla frosting & a piece of caramel. It’s heaven, here are some pictures from the event:

For more pictures see the album on the Small Chick Big Deals Facebook, here.  All the photos were taken by Ayasha Roberson of Jerz Hot Spots!

As always, happy eating! 😀

Here’s to having a sweet tooth!

#SCBD Friday Inspiration: Favorite Foodie Quotes!

I’m going to try to keep this up and post some of my favorite foodie quotes every Fridays. Here are some of my inspirational foodie quotes this week:

 

 

& for perspective:

I have a few posts on the way for here as well as Jersey Bites, New Fork City, and more!

Also don’t forget to RSVP to the events on my Facebook page for next week, I’ll be posting about them as well!!!

Have a great weekend, new posts soon!

’til next time, Happy Eating! 😀

 

 

 

Top Notch Meal at Top O’ Th’ Hill

Last Friday I went out with my boyfriend, Jason to this local dive near his house now. I haven’t seen a place like it in New Jersey, cheap drinks (cocktails are $5 and beers are $3-4) and delicious food to eat, especially if you are a sucker for comfort food like I am. I’ve been there twice and my second experience just justified how great it is. Here are the reasons why Top O’ Th’ Hill is another one of my Jersey favorites!

Top O’ Th’ Hill Tavern (1182 US 202, Bridgewater, NJ)

Customer Service: 5- If your sitting behind the bar, Jim will most likely take care of you. He knows everything about the restaurant and takes care of all the customers. Everyone is attentive because they serve a lot of locals.

Atmosphere: 5- It’s definitely a dive, a few tables and a big bar in the middle towards the back. They have a huge tv near the bar that usually has sports on. It works very well for it. They have a lot of memorabilia up too, it’s very local but that’s what I love about it.

Food/Drink Quality: 5- I was actually more impressed than I thought by the food. The first time I went I split the boneless fried chicken with Jason’s mom and Jason had a burger. The dinners are huge by the way, big enough to split and come with two sides which range from cucumber salad to potato pancakes. We were silent the entire time because it was so delicious. The second time I came I had the crab cakes and had leftovers because it was huge. I want the recipe for the cucumber salad, it’s so delicious.

The bar is very typical. They have a great beer selection which includes blue moon and they also have some craft beers. But if you like cocktails you have to get their signature cocktails, the Tennis Ball or Red Death. My personal favorite is Red Death now. It’s a great mix of juices and liquors. It would be a sin to go and not get at least one of those cocktails. Jason even got the inside on the recipes so we can make them at home when we can’t come in, which probably won’t be often since I love it at Top O’ Th’ Hill.

Price: $- You can definitely get dinner for two for $40 or less depending on how much you eat or drink. Entrees are no less than $15 and the appetizers are budget friendly. Their signature cocktails are $5, strong & delicious.

Final Score: 15/15- I highly recommend going to Top O’ Th’ Hill Tavern if you are in the Bridgewater/Bedminster area. You’ll get your money’s worth of food (portions are huge) and drinks are top notch plus it’s a great little date spot. They also have a band every Friday night for entertainment. I love this place and try to go to at least once on a Friday or Saturday, since they are closed on Sunday’s,  when I’m staying by Jason.

The Red Death at Top O’ Th’ Hill Tavern, Bridgewater

Cucumber Salad

Crab Cake Dinner

If you are in the Bridgewater area and stop in let me know if you agree!

Top O’ Th’ Hill is everything that my blog stands for: great local food, great drinks at a great price, and a friendly staff to top it off.

Look out for me covering: NYC, Hoboken & more!

Also I’ll be guest blogging for Carter Int’l Concierge, contributing for Jersey Bites & New Fork City, be on the look out. Links will be on this page as well! There will also be more interviews & recipes in the near future. Can’t wait tell you more of what’s in store. Make sure you’re following @smchickbigdeals on Twitter and a fan on Facebook!

‘Til next time…

Happy Eating! 😀

#smallchickbigdeals Recipe: Quick & Easy Hello Dolly Pie

 Who doesn’t love pie?!

I know I can’t deny an ooey, gooey piece of pie especially if there is chocolate in it! This is the perfect pie to bring to any Fourth of July BBQ or party you’ll be attending!

So a few weeks ago after being inspired by Apron Anxiety and determined to cook again one of my co-workers told me about this super easy pie to make. It’s called Hello Dolly Pie. I was able to make two for about $20 in ingredients which isn’t too bad. It was a hit when I brought it to work and when my family had it!

Hello Dolly Pie

Ingredients:

  • 1 premade or homemade graham cracker crust
  • 1 cup of chocolate chips
  • 1 cup of chopped pecans
  • 1 cup of flaked coconut
  • 1 (14 oz.) can of sweetened condensed milk

Instructions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350* 
  2. Make or unwrap graham cracker crust.
  3. Insert 1 cup of each dry ingredient (in order as listed above)
  4. Top with can of sweetened condensed milk
  5. Let it bake in the oven for 20 minutes
  6. Let it cool for a few hours, when it’s totally cool, cut and enjoy!!!

It’s delicious and you can be creative with what you put in it. I know I want to put in peanut butter and chocolate chips next time I make it!

So next time you’re bored and want to bake, try it and let me know if you like it!!!

Happy Eating & don’t forget to satisfy your sweet tooth 😀

…’til next time!

#smallchickbigdeals Top 5 Reasons why you should go to Trader Joe’s!

I did my Cinco de Mayo grocery shopping yesterday and had to decide whether i should go to Trader Joe’s, Wal-Mart, Aldi, or Stop & Shop. After deliberating for a few minutes I decided on Trader Joe’s because I know they have pretty good deals and good quality food, but I was a little apprehensive since it was my first time getting beef and I was worried it might’ve been out of my budget, but I was wrong.

There are plenty of a Trader Joe’s locations on the East Coast so I recommend you stop by sometime. There are way to many reasons why I love Trader Joe’s so I’ve decided to narrow it down to a top 5.

Top 5 Reasons why #smallchickbigdeals loves Trader Joe’s:

1. It’s economically friendly: I spent less than 20 dollars yesterday and got juice, ground beef, taco seasoning, 2 apples, and 2 kiwis.  In other words, they have great deals and there prices won’t break your wallet.

2. The food is great quality: I’ve never had anything I’ve been disappointed with at Trader Joe’s. Not only is most of there food healthy but its delicious. They also have some great frozen meals in their freezer section.

3. SAMPLES!!!: If you come in hungry, don’t worry they have samples!!! They usually have a frozen entree (thats cooked) to sample along with a desert and they always have small cups of coffee available to drink while you get your groceries.

4. Amazing Customer Service: I was in awe when I saw they sold ground beef by the pound so I asked someone who worked there if the price I saw was really the price. They kindly said yes and was eager to answer my questions.

5. Two Buck Chuck: Unfortunately the location I went to did not have alcohol. But some locations have wine and beer. Trader Joe’s is known for its “2 buck chuck” aka 2 buck wine! Now what can be better than that? I’ve had it before and it tastes great!

Hope you stop by a Trader Joe’s next time you see one nearby!

Happy Eating 😀