Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Until Next Time, Cinnamon Snail

The Cinnamon Snail recently announced the shocking news that their trucks would cease to operate as of the end of this month. Chef Adam Sobel spoke to GrubStreet about the decision and it's incredibly worthwhile reading- if for no other reason than to assuage your disappointment, as it offers some harsh insight into the reality of running a food truck in NYC.

In light of this blow to your compassionate, mealtime rituals- an ode:
I'd already been eating Chef Adam's food for years when The Cinnamon Snail opened in New Jersey on Valentine's Day in 2010: Jersey City.


VM and I (and 89 when she appeared) became instant regulars at their Red Bank, NJ farmar location.

Then we were there when they made their New York debut only months later, where I began my love affair with the peanut butter chocolate chip cookie dough donut and continued to stalk them regularly in a second state.

When they began vending at the Bethlehem, PA Vegfest, I succeeded in eating their incomparable fare in a third state- most notably in a downpour.

I celebrated when their kitchen moved to Brooklyn and have tirelessly championed their generous endeavors. I've held silly contests inspired by their wackiness. I've mo-foed them repeatedly. I've shamelessly obsessed over the noberweiberweiberweiberhydrafab, and essentially ate all of their donuts all of the time. I even relegated a piece of my snapware collection solely to the collection and transportation of their donuts, dubbing it "The Snail Pail."

I participated in the recipe testing for their highly anticipated cookbook, Street Vegan, which will be available in May.




I've visited the Snail at events galore: from NYC Vegetarian Food Festivals to the phenomenal Vegan Shop-Ups. Essentially, I ate and blogged about them so much that I even had to resort to trying my hand at being witty- which is not necessarily my forté.

I've eaten breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert at the Snail more times than I can count (yes, even more than I've blogged), but it somehow seems as though it wasn't enough.

I visited for the last time this past Sunday for a slew of Snaily "lasts." Plenty of other fans had the same idea; we waited on line for 1 hour and 37 minutes and it was worth every second.

VM's favorite portabello carpaccio, which was also the very first Snail sammie she ever devoured.

My gochujang burger deluxe.

Oh, and my Thai BBQ tempeh (don't judge; you'd have eaten two sammies also)

89's arugula party.

And, of course, some donuts for the road.

I know there are great things on the horizon for Chef Adam...

as well as the entire award-winning Snail crew.

So, I won't say "goodbye".


Not "so long", "ta ta", or even "farewell". It's only until next time...and I can't wait to see what the future will bring.


Thanks to each and every one of you for every amazing thing.

Rock on!


  1. I'm going to follow that link about their decision to end their business. My favorite truck, the Vegan Van, closed shop (er..parked indefinitely) something like a year and a half ago, and I was so sad. I had given her regular business, but she couldn't keep up with the cost of running the truck.. She had hoped to establish a brick and mortar but Denver is exploding right now with a population increase and a housing/building shortage - thus, it's becoming expensive to live here. *sigh* At any rate, I loved this post and hopefully you can see their new ventures soon!

    1. Thank you, Ingrid. I think that because our vegan communities are so (relatively) small, we feel the losses of these incredible businesses so personally. Hopefully the VV will re-emerge as I expect the Snail to- even it's in another incarnation!

  2. Quite a tribute. I still feel like one day i will try their cuisine, so I am not as saddened as others.

    I am somewhat torn though because when one of your posts doesnt have a 89 in it, I dont like it, but then, in this one, it was like, "Oh! Look 89!" and it detracted from the gravitas a bit. Just my unsolicited two cents as always,

    1. I'm glad 89 brought some levity! She always does. For instance, she was batting her eyes at the two nice people in front of us on line and then she tried to bite them when they went to pet her. Good times, I say.

  3. Lovely tribute. I'm sad to say I never had the pleasure of dining at the Snail, except vicariously through your blog. Any food business is hard, with long hours and unexpected problems, and I hope Adam finds a way to balance his tremendous and generous creativity and talent with the kind of life he wishes.

    1. I agree. It's a struggle for us all, but adding NYC-specific woes to an already stressful food business must be suffocating.

  4. The PB chocolate chip dough donut looks yummy. I'm sad that I haven't tried Cinnamon Snail. I’m simply missing out!! ;( Are those gua bao - the ones you tested out from the cookbook? They are a favorite local delicacy of mine, miam miam!

    1. They ARE bao buns, Rika; great eye! They were delish. Hopefully you can make all of these treasured meals at home when the cookbook comes out :-)

  5. I AM SO SAD FOR YOU, 89, AND VM!!!!!!!

  6. I have watched Adam, Joey and their friends /crew work their asses off back when he was still making and selling food out of his house, pre-Snail, and it is incredibly sad. I haven't visited much lately but it felt wonderful to drive 20 minutes on a Sunday to pick up a donut assortment. The health food store cashier this morning, first words out of her mouth, "Did you hear about Adam and the truck?" then we both laughed because we know he'll do something even more amazing next.

  7. So sad. It was so good.

  8. It's always sad when you hear about a vegan place shutting down, particularly when it's a good one, and I've heard nothing but good stuff about Cinnamon Snail. Given I'll never be able to go there, I guess I'll get the recipe book and pretend!

  9. They will be missed greatly! Thanks for the great recap!

  10. I can't wait to see what the future will bring for the CS crew. I totally understand why they're quitting food truck life, I've never eaten there because on the three occasions I was in NYC and went to get their food they were moved on by police repeatedly and I was just too damn hungry to keep chasing them! I hope I get to try their food somewhere someday.


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