John at work
Carnegie John hard at work over the summer

Long-time NYSF readers know how much I love Carnegie John’s food, who I believe serves the best chicken over rice in midtown.  Newer readers, pay close attention.

Carnegie John’s cart is on West 56th St, just east of 7th Ave (right behind Carnegie Hall), where it has been for over the past 10 years.  Before that, John learned the business at the knee of Tony Dragonas, who was a Vendy Award finalist in 2005, the very first year they were held.

There are a few things that set Carnegie John apart from the chicken over rice at most other street vendors. See what they are after the jump.

Today’s Lunch is chicken over rice ($6.50) from Carnegie John’s.

First – John uses only whole white-meat chicken breasts, which are rubbed with his own blend of spices.  Using chicken breasts ensures there is no funky stuff like fat or gristle in the meat.

Second – There is a charcoal grill at the cart, in addition to the standard flat top grill. This gives John’s chicken that extra edge of charcoal grilled flavor.

Third –  John’s white sauce is real tzaziki sauce made with yogurt and cucumber.  It’s much thicker and tastes much better than the mayo-based white sauces served at most of the halal carts.  It’s healthier too.

Even the rice and salad is good.  John’s yellow rice has a soft, buttery taste, although it could have been cooked a little less.

The salad was lettuce, tomato and radicchio with a light Italian-type dressing that was nice and refreshing at the end of the meal.

The only downside is John’s hot sauce isn’t that hot.

All-in-all though, in my opinion, Carnegie John serves the best chicken over rice in midtown.  Let me know if you agree. If not, who else’s chicken over rice do you love?

BTW, Carnegie John also serves a kick-ass burger.