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The Arepa Lady

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Roosevelt Avenue Enjoys a Moment in the Sun

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Roosevelt Avenue in Queens has always been one of our favorite strips: middle-aged-lesbian dance parties at Bum Bum! Baby-doll night at Flamingo! We like to eat there too, and apparently so does Good magazine which, we hear, will name “la Roosie” one of America’s best food streets. Their picks: El Sitio, Unidentified Flying Chicken, Krystal’s, Zabb Queens, and the Arepa Lady. The feature will be found here in the coming week (others, such as a writer’s attempt to bag a deer in suburban L.A., are up now); in the meantime Metromix and AM New York have joint-published a Joshua M. Bernstein piece in which he hits ten places on Roosevelt and spends just ten bucks — culminating in an ill-fated attempt to eat a fertilized duck embryo raw. If you want to try one of these without gagging, hit up Elvie’s Turo-Turo. Issue 009: All You Can Eat [Good] Dollar Grub: Roosevelt Ave. [Metromix NY] Related: Riding the V Line: Guinea Pig on Roosevelt Avenue

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Last Year's Vendy Winner Envies Miss Universe

Our heartiest congratulations go out to Samiul Haque Noor, the winner of the 2006 Vendy Award for New York's best street vendor. Noor won a cook-off against three other finalists, including the legendary "Arepa Lady," to take the top honors Sunday night. We contacted last year's winner, Rolf Babiel of Hallo Berlin, who was ineligible for this year's contest, at his home in Binghamton, to ask him what's in store for Noor. "I got a lot of new customers," Babiel said. "And my lines got longer. Too long! I lost some of the old customers. We had visits from Oprah and Rachael Ray and journalists from Germany and Japan." Babiel appreciates the attention the Vendys earned him, but one thing made him a little uneasy. "I got a big trophy," he said. "But they called me up and said they need to take it back. I thought, It should be like Miss Universe, and I could give the trophy to the new winner. It would have been a little more professional. You know, I think the Vendys are a little bit disorganized. But I don't get carried away." Grub Street's favorite carts

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It's Hard Out There for a Street Vendor

USA Today just published an article detailing how vendors are routinely harassed by cops for minor violations like being too far from the curb, too close to a doorway, or on the wrong corner. Making matters worse, in February, the city raised the maximum fine for non-health-related violations from $250 to $1,000. Now there's talk of capping the number of licenses given out. The Street Vendor Project, an advocacy group best known by civilians for the Vendy Awards, might be the only resource the workers have. So support them by dropping in on the Vendys, happening Sunday night at St. Mark's Church in the East Village. After the jump, find the list of nominees — and info on a special contest!

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Trans-Fat Ban: The Restaurants at Risk

Where would we be without trans fats? The joys of margarine and shortening know no end in New York. Few restaurants care to admit to using it. But going by our taste buds and instinct for human nature, we've got ten educated guesses at great local restaurants with foods containing the magical substance. None of these dishes would be the same with replacement fat: It would be better to stop serving them entirely. But a ban poses more risk to the business of some restaurants than others, of course. A RUB without the deep-fried Oreos would still be the city's best barbecue, but if the Arepa Lady had to spray Pam on her griddle, even her cult might disband.

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