The Parks Department Is Bringing Purple Yam to the Upper West Side


Some encouraging news for Purple Yam fans who are weary of the Q train: The Ditmas Park Filipino restaurant will soon have two outposts on the Upper West Side, thanks to the NYC Parks Department.

The restaurant is one of six new vendors chosen to open trucks and carts at Parks Department locations throughout the city, Diner’s Journal reports. Both of Purple Yam’s carts, called Li’l Purple Yam, will be posted near Columbia University; one will sell savory dishes, and the other one sweets.

Also on the Upper West Side, Coolhaus will continue its increasingly terrifying proliferation with a cart next to the American Museum of Natural History; expect that to kick off in July.

Down in the West Village, Kelvin Natural Slush Co. will park by the Little Red Square on Sixth Avenue, while Je & Jo will sell cookie-dough ice cream by the playground at Bleecker and West 11th streets. Somehow, we’re guessing that organic ice cream won’t arouse the same furor as Mister Softee did when he dared to peddle his wares near a Park Slope playground.

Indeed, all of these vendors are decidedly of the new-school (read: gentrified, Twitter-savvy) variety, something that the Street Vendor Project’s Sean Basinski told the Times is a result of the Parks Department’s complicated application, which one needs a “Harvard M.B.A. to fill [out].” Given that the department’s call for proposals was met by a paltry 58 applicants, it’s not surprising that a parks rep admitted that more outreach was needed. How do you say “request for proposals” in Urdu?