The Takee Cup

November 29th, 2010 § 45 comments

The Takee Cup was an ambulatory treat available decades ago on the boardwalk at Edgemere,a working class summer vacation neighborhood of Rockaway Beach,N.Y. The Takee Cup,oval in shape,was fashioned of fried chow mein noodles. It was filled with chow mein. A squirt of soy sauce. A dab of hot mustard. Plastic fork in hand you strolled the boardwalk and when finished with the interior you munched on the tasty,crispy noodle cup. I marveled at the aptness of the name—Takee. Redolent of the Orient (at least as interpreted by New Yorkers of a certain generation} and descriptive in terms of the snack’s mobility. Lately I learned the bitter truth. The snack was originally named The Tuckee Cup after its inventor,a Mr. Tuck Lee. A large sign proclaimed The Tuckee Cup. When the boardwalk shop closed for the winter, bad, bad boys changed the “T” in the sign to an “F.” An indecency was created. Every year the proprietor repainted “the sign. He got tired of it. Thus,”Takee” was born. By the way,it cost 15 cents and it was mighty tasty.

§ 45 Responses to The Takee Cup"

  • Donald S. Hecht says:

    Hey Gerald, I bet my wife that I was the only one alive who remembered the Takee Cup. I spent the summers of ’53 and ’54 in a rooming house which was one house off the boardwalk on Beach 38th Street. I also remember Jerry’s Kosher Knish’s (especially the blueberry) and Izzy Faber’s Skee-Ball. There was also the open-air theatre. Sweet times.


    • Judy says:

      You are not he only one who remembers. I loved The Takee Cups. Even after we moved to Long Beach we would cross the bridge to Edgemere, Rockaway for this.

  • […] be time to revive that great beach classic –The Takee Cup? HG wistfully recalled the tasty Takee Cup in a post a few months ago. Bring it back for the new cool […]

    • LINDA WERNER says:

      I was a young child in the 50s. I loved Takes Cup also – wonderful memories.?

      • Gerry says:

        So glad HG brought back happy memories of boardwalk delights. Rockaway is becming a cool place, a hangout for the Williamsburg hipsters. Maybe we’ll see some innovative riffs on the immortal Takee.

  • roberta says:

    I think the time is right to revive the takee cup in this age of fast food and food on the go.

    Who can we get in touch with. I have been trying and the idea is exciting. RSVP

  • Joyvr says:

    Yes! I was looking for this website. In far rockaway in the summer we got these. 25 cents a cup full of rice and chow mein and eat the noodle cup! HEAVEN!!! PLEASE BRING THIS BACK…WE NEED IT! In Brooklyn we also had a Chow Chow cup.

  • Joyce says:

    YES! I was looking for this website!! In far rockaway in the summer we had this. 25 cents a cup full of rice and chow mein and eat the noodle cup! HEAVEN IN A NOODLE CUP! PLEASE BRING THIS BACK!! In Brooklyn we also had a Chow Chow cup!!! wonderful!!!!!!

  • Bob Levine says:

    In the 50’s and 60’s I loved going to the Far Rock boardwalk and having a Tuckee cup.

    Everyone I tell, can;t believe this item existed.

    My wife and I dated at Playland and went into Manhattan on the HH train which ended at Euclid Ave Booklyn for a transpire to the A train.

    Later on, worked at Nathan’s Oceanside but their chow mein on a burger bun couldn’t compare to a real Tuckee cup.

  • Alan David says:

    I loved the Takee cup. I was friendly with the owners son in the mid sixties and used to hang around watching his mother and grandmother make them. I also worked the counter at Sam’s Knishes up the boardwalk a little way.
    I got fat from eating all the broken Knishes they would give me. What a fantastic place 35th street area boardwalk was! Lots of rock musicians to see, and of course the bikini clad girls everywhere. I started a long music career playing with the Lost Souls rock band in that era.

    • Gerry says:

      I still believe 35th Street (Edgemere) was the saltwater mobile culinary treats center of the world.

    • richard cherkoss says:


      • Gerry says:

        Sad. The Takee Cup (originally the Tuckee Cup) is gone, lost in Rockaway’s ocean breezes. Takee Cups, knishes, frozen custard reside in may 90-year-old memory bank.

      • Bob Levenstien says:

        Everyone who ever had a takee cup has thought about how to reproduce it. Can you imagine a little hold in the wall place selling just takee cups in the NYU area off University Pl.? I grew up in Edgemere in the 50s and between the arcade, lemon Italian Ice, Howe’s Bathhouse and Takee Cup it was a kid’s paradise. And, yes I have also investigated having those noodle cups made. To no avail. Let me know w=it you figure it out and where you’ve set up shop.

  • Steve says:

    I thought I was the only person who remembered the wonderful Takee cup. My grandfather owned a place nearby and when we visited him that would be our 1st stop.
    Nathans was nowhere near as good. Would travel back in an instant if Takee cup was brought back. Thanks for the memories

    • Gerry says:

      Nothing could compare to the mobile lushness of a Takee Cup.But, if you wanted gloppy chow mein, Nathan’s version had to suffice.

  • Bob Levenstien says:

    I grew up in Edgemere, (Beach 37th St.) and between Takee Cup, the Movie theater on the boardwalk, the best Italian ices ever and the ability to grab the gold ring on the merry-go-round and get a free ride, there was no better place to spend the summer.

  • Phyllis Wight says:

    Although I no longer live in New York, the memories I have of summers in Rockaway stand out among the best times of my life.
    We would rent a bungalow, usually in the 50s or 40s (spent the last 6 years on Beach 29th Street in the Embassy) around Easter and bring our belongings tied on to my father’s car each weekend until school was over. With great anticipation my sisters and I counted down the days until the end of school knowing that a great adventure, going from the steamy hot Manhattan streets to the wide-open sandy vistas that inhabit the Rockaway of my memories. Once there we lay in the sun becoming as brown as berries, played with friends new and returning, went on the boardwalk and ate Tuckee cups, Jerry’s knishes, pizza, you name it. We played ski-ball at 3 cents a game and collected hundreds of tickets-you couldn’t lose. I used my sizeable collection to “buy” my mother a set of dishes. I remember how happy I was.
    Rockaway was the stuff of my dreams. Carefree, sun-filled days. Walks to Far Rockaway, going to the Chinese restaurant that was up a flight of stairs, Dugan’s bakery, the Good Humor Man , the miniature golf course, Crazy Eddie singing “hound dog”, it was to me, paradise.

    To this very day whenever I hear the word Rockaway, I am transported back to a simpler, golden time. I try to visit the site of my dreams when I travel back to New York. I have photos taken by the Beach 29th St. boardwalk signage, but alas, it is all gone, save for the Rockaway that I keep safely hidden in my soul.

    • Gerry says:

      Thanks for your lovely stroll down Memory Lane.

    • Lynda Salomone says:

      Yes. Everything you said. The ghost of the teenage me walks the ghost of the boardwalk, from 59th to 36th streets. Golden dream days. ??????????

    • Mindy Brintz says:

      I couldn’t have said it better myself. I was VERY young, but all those memories are there for me, too. My Dad and his friend had a fruit stand at the beginning of Beach 28th St. We spent summers there with my grandparents, an aunt & uncle, and three cousins.That lasted five years, then we moved to the burbs, so no more Rockaway for our family. My grandparents still went every year until maybe 1970. We used to visit. I remember fireworks on Wednesday from Playland. #BestMemories

  • Ronni Sander says:

    I was reflecting on the Far Rockaway boardwalk of the 50s & 60s because my Dad, Jerry, passed away last month. He was THAT Jerry…of Jerry’s Knishes. He made the knishes himself based on his mother’s recipe. Oh, how he loved the boardwalk. He met my Mom there & they were married for 66 years. I can still hear my Mom behind the counter of the 35st St store, “Who’s next?”

    • Gerry says:

      By the time the 50’s came along, Rockaway was in my past. Don’t recall Jerry’s Knishes but I’m sure they were splendid.

    • Lynda Salomone says:

      Condolences on your father’s passing.

      THAT Jerry, Jerry’s Knishes Jerry! Those knishes were the best! My mouth started watering as soon as I saw the words THAT Jerry! I can’t count the number of times I heard your Mom calling out “Who’s next?” Or the number of those delicious knishes we enjoyed. I can picture them, like little gems, in boxes as we carried them to our bungalows. I can almost feel the warmth through the box. I remember the feel of the delicate paper they were wrapped in.

      I’ve eaten lots of knishes since those golden days at Rockaway, but Jerry’s were the very best. I’m so glad I saw your post, and thank you for sharing your memories here.

      Now I’ve got to go and grab something to eat!! Thanks again, Ronni.

    • Gene Radwin says:

      I still droll when I remember Jerry’s Cherry Cheese knishes. The best ever

  • Alan says:

    WOW!!! How many Takee Cups (or Tuckee Cups-depending on the year) I ate every summer on the boardwalk before or after playing Skee-Ball. Those along with Jerry’s Knishes (potato, kasha, cherry cheese, pineapple cheese). I must build a time machine and go back. Thanks for the memories.

    • Gerry says:

      Many Rockaway years ago HG’s summer treats were Takee Cups, Jerry’s Knishes (and frozen custard). Now on Prince Edward Island the treats are oysters and mussels.

  • DMD says:

    Oy–how we remember the days of our youth now long past–Larry and Sally; Jerry’s Knishes; Takee cup; fireworks on the boardwalk –growing up in 162 Beach 33rd street–the bungalow colonies–ah, those fragrant images now living only in the memories of old men like me–as the song goes–“Thanks For The Memories”!!!
    DMD FRHS ’57

  • jack weiss says:

    i was recently remembering the tuckee cup and how much i loved it as a kid on the boardwalk. i am trying to start selling this and wonder if A. are they available B. is there a pattent on them ????? please help if you can

    • Jeremy says:

      No idea about their existence or about any patent.

    • Gerry says:

      The Rockaway treat became the “Takee Cup” after bad boys altered the “Tuckee” sign into an obscenity. Anyway, “Takee” seemed more appropriate for an ambulatory culinary experience.You can do a Google search for the history. Closest thing to it was the messy but yummy chow mein sandwich sold by Nathan’s at a New York location.

  • Jane says:

    Just thinking of the Takee Cup and googled it and found this site! I spent summers from 1944 to 1949 in Rockaway from Beach 34 St to Beach 37 St. those were the best days! Loved the open air movie on the Boardwalk!

  • I lived every summer from 1951 to 1968 on Beach 36th St in a bungalow colony right off the boardwalk. I really miss Jerry’s knishes, none I have had since compare to it. Also I loved Tuckee Cup and the french fries on the corner of 35th steet. I also just loved the summers there. I wish my daughter would have beeb able to experience it

  • Myra Wendel Roney says:

    Great memories. Lived in Edgemere from 1936. My brother was born in St Joseph’s hospital My father had the luncheonette on the corner of 35th until about 1950. Then had the store on 34th Street. Worked our rumps off for you “summer people”
    Lots of wonderful memories of our summer friends. Still in touch with the reminent few friends from full time Edgemereites.
    FRHS 1953. 1959
    Beach 36th St

    • Bob Levenstien says:

      My sister and I went to elementary school just down the block from the luncheonette. It was a big treat for us to take the sandwiches our mother made for us and go to Al & Murray’s Luncheonette for a coke or even better a vanilla shake. What memories!

  • Gerry Gafka says:

    Dear Gerald,
    It’s been a long time since I was on the Edgemere boardwalk (1956), I loved the Tuckee cup and just discovered your blog. How wonderful. I am writing my memoire and wonder if I could use the picture in your take on Tuckee cups. We have the same first name. Best regards,
    Gerald Gafka

  • franklin field says:

    i have been trying to find the exact location of the tuckee / tackee store . does any one know ? was it between b. 32 to b.33 or was it between b.35 to b.36 . between which other stores . i have been able to locate a good number of the other concessions in the area between b.32 and b.36 . but not tackee cup . please help , thanks

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