Customers are up in arms about the removal of cottage fries from the menu at retro icon Roll-N-Roaster in Sheepshead Bay, the Brooklyn Paper reports. Roll-N-Roaster announced the switch to potato wedge-style fries on Instagram on February 17, calling the new versions “crispier” and “even more delicious” than the round potato versions, which have been a staple on the menu since the restaurant opened in 1970. That didn’t convince customers who flooded the comments section on Instagram, pleading for a cottage fry return.
The publication attributed the swap to supply chain issues with cottage fries supplier Lamb Weston. The vendor also supplies to J.G. Melon, which announced they’d be taking off cottage fries from their menu back in December of last year. The drama brings to mind Shake Shack’s own fries debacle. In 2014, the burger chain admitted it had made a mistake in replacing its fan-favorite crinkle fries with hand-cut versions and restored the originals.
The news inspired Michael Quinn, owner of Feltman’s Hot Dogs in Brooklyn and a longtime Roll-N-Roaster customer, to launch a petition calling on Lamb Weston to bring back its cottage fries to both New York institutions. At the time of publication, the petition had 325 signatures.
A birria pop-up goes permanent
Viva Birria, a birria taco pop-up that first got its start at Lower East Side bar Boys Don’t Cry in summer 2020, is opening a permanent spot in the neighborhood. According to Bowery Boogie, Viva Birria will relaunch at 153 Ludlow Street, near Stanton Street, sometime in 2022.
A new momo cart rolls into Woodside
Queens food blog Chopsticks and Marrow checks out Basantapur Chowk, a new momo cart in Woodside that opened last month. In addition to “stellar” momos, writer Joe DiStefano reports that the stand offers hot dogs loaded up with a Nepali take on coleslaw, using green chiles. Basantapur Chowk is located outside of Nepali nightclub Thamel NYC at 63-14 Roosevelt Avenue, between 63rd and 64th streets.
Slice shop Frankie and Vali’s has a new name and partner
After just a few months in operation, Frankie and Vali’s, a Bed-Stuy slice shop from the Greenberg’s Bagels team, is already undergoing an overhaul. Owner Julian Cavin tells Eater that he has split with former co-owner Jamison Blankenship, renamed the business Valentine’s, and has brought in Joey Scalabrino of Leo pizzeria fame as his partner. Blankenship will remain Cavin’s partner at Greenberg’s and the amicable split from pizza was so that Blankenship can focus more on his other restaurant Chuko, according to Cavin. When Valentine’s relaunches on March 9 with Scalabrino, the menu will largely remain the same, with a few additions like garlic knots, but the restaurant will be angled more towards full-service and include beer, wine, and cocktails.