If you’re adventurous and feeling limited by the abundance of chicken and beef at most restaurants, you’ll want to check out Dark Side of the Moo, where the menu reads like a zoo with options ranging from kangaroo burgers to alligator gumbo. After getting his start in the food truck world, owner Tyrone Green just opened his second brick and mortar and first New York City location in Hell’s Kitchen.
Green was working as a trader on Wall Street and well on his way to getting burnt out when he found his way to food. After Hurricane Sandy devastated his neighborhood of Hoboken, New Jersey, he became inspired by local food trucks feeding his neighbors — and the rest, as they say, is history.
“It really was a case of one day I’m a trader, the next day I’m going to set up a food truck, an epiphany if you will,” he explained in an interview. “I went from my ‘A-ha’ moment to hitting the streets in 4 months.” Green started with a food cart in 2013 before expanding to two food trucks and eventually his first brick and mortar in Jersey City in 2015.
He started with pulled pork sandwiches and burgers before his menu became the exotic “meat emporium” that it is today. “We specialize in exotic burgers,” Green told us when we stopped by his new spot at W44th Street between 8/9th Avenues. “We have kangaroo burgers, bison, yak, camel. And we’re always doing specials, trying to bring new things to people. Like ostrich bulgogi or snake spring rolls.”
If you’re a vegetarian, this might all sound like your worst nightmare, but you can still find something on the extensive menu. “We make our own Indian spiced black bean burger,” Green notes. “It’s vegan, gluten-free. We do try to cater to everyone but we also cater to people with items on their bucket list, we help knock some off for them.”
The interior has a fast-casual, rustic feel. Green commissioned Long Island-based artist Mike A to create a series of paintings in the back, depicting some of the animals on the menu “in a fun way.” There’s a yak climbing the Empire State Building a la King Kong and a camel trotting down the street with a little nod to the restaurant’s name: a tattoo on its side of the Pink Floyd flying pig.
Dark Side of the Moo is at 339 W44th Street. (646) 448-4905. darksideofthemoo.com