Dante Mercadante has probably eaten at more food trucks than you: It's literally his job to find the best ones, and so far, his count hovers a little above 200. Luckily, he's not tight-lipped about his favorites; you've just got to follow him through the streets of New York before he'll tell you.
BOOK A TOUR NOW: Nice Guy Tours, $50; Airbnb.com
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Mercadante's been leading food truck tours since 2012. What started as a temporary shift from a career in stand-up comedy and acting turned into the forever kind of love, and Mercadante launched his own company, Nice Guy Tours, in 2014. Earlier this year, it caught the eye of Airbnb execs. The home rental site launched its New York Experiences — activities designed and led by local experts — last month, and Mercadante's tours scored a spot on the list. Through the site, you can book a Friday tour for $50 per person. (Dante's personal site offers them on Wednesday afternoons.)
"Sometimes people ask you what you do for a living, and you'll say, I'm a teacher, I'm an electrician, I'm a plumber," Mercadante says. "I get weird looks when I say I'm a food tour guide."
But weird looks be damned, Mercadante hits the streets of Manhattan six times a week, leading hungry customers from truck to cart to truck. His regular two-hour route offers meat and rice, pizza, waffles — all of his favorites, with a strict promise. Mercandate recalls it, laughing: "If you don't like whatever I feed you, I will finish it."
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