The Dosa-Man's Love Affair with Food: A New York Icon's Journey

Born in Jaffna, Sri Lanka Kumar's journey to becoming Dosa-Man was one of resilience and determination. Immigrating to U.S. in 1995 amidst Sri Lanka's civil war he did various jobs from construction to pumping gas before finding his true calling for food.

By Drishti Joshi
New Update
Dosa Man

Dosa In New York

Inspired by his experiences at Dosa Hutt in Flushing, Kumar set out to create something unique, something that would captivate the taste buds of New Yorkers.


In December 2001, NY Dosas made its debut, against the backdrop of a city reeling from the aftermath of 9/11. Despite the challenges, Kumar's unwavering dedication to his craft and his commitment to veganism set his cart apart. With dosas as the centerpiece of his menu, Kumar introduced New Yorkers to the delights of this South Indian delicacy, drawing in crowds with the promise of flavorful, affordable fare.

From the Pondicherry special to his signature vegan drumsticks, Kumar's offerings reflect his culinary prowess and his passion for sharing his heritage with others. Each dosa is meticulously crafted, accompanied by sambar and coconut chutney, delivering a burst of flavors that keep customers coming back for more.

Over the years, Kumar's cart has garnered attention from far and wide, with features in newspapers and videos that showcase his remarkable journey. Winning a Vendy award in 2007 only solidified his status as a street food legend, earning him comparisons to the Susan Lucci of the awards. Yet, amidst the accolades, Kumar remains humble, attributing his success to a simple formula: quality food and unwavering dedication.


Operating mostly as a solo venture, Kumar occasionally enlists the help of friends and family to keep NY Dosas running smoothly. Yet, it is his love for his craft that truly drives him, transcending mere financial gain. Despite offers to expand into a restaurant, Kumar prefers to keep things authentic, rooted in the simplicity of his cart.

As he looks ahead to the future, Kumar's commitment to NY Dosas remains steadfast. With his current contract running until 2029, he shows no signs of slowing down, continuing to delight customers with his delectable creations. For the Dosa-Man, it's not just about the food; it's about sharing a piece of his culture and his passion with the vibrant tapestry of New York City.

In a city where diversity is celebrated and culinary adventures await at every corner, ThiruThiru Kumar stands as a shining example of the power of food to unite and inspire. Through his dedication and love for his craft, the Dosa-Man has carved out a special place in the hearts of New Yorkers, one dosa at a time.

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