Moon Man

South East Asian Desserts

Since opening in 2017, Moon Man has been a fixture NYC’s food market scene, combining nostalgia and culinary innovation through their modern take on Southeast Asian street food. Cousins Nigel Sielegar and Wenny Purnomo grew up in Indonesia, and have yearned to introduce fellow New Yorkers to the delicious desserts they ate walking the streets of Indonesia. In their first permanent storefront, customers will be able to try many of Moon Man’s delicious creations.

Get to Know: Moon Man

Nigel Sielegar & Wenny Purnomo

Owners

How do you think your food reflects your personal experience? Do you see this venture as an opportunity for cultural combination between your Indonesian roots and current lives in the United States?

While all of Moon Man menu items are designed to be a modernized version of Southeast Asian street desserts and snacks, all the recipes are still based on the traditional recipes. In a sense, Moon Man is a blend of both cultures, and we are carrying two very important missions within this venture. On one hand, it’s about introducing Southeast Asian desserts and snacks to New York City. On the other hand, it's to preserve the culture, since a lot of these street food are getting harder and more impossible to find in their place of origin.

What do you hope to accomplish with your first brick and mortar location that you couldn't with your market pop ups?

We are excited about this first brick and mortar location, since it will streamline a lot of our usual operations, and we won’t need to set up and break down each time. Having a fixed facility will allow us to expand our offerings even more.

When I think of the Lower East Side, I think of…

Diversity. The Lower East Side was once an immigrant neighborhood that has sustained many changes over the past few decades, yet somehow it has managed to maintain its cultural diversity.

Best thing about NYC and worst thing about NYC:

The best thing about New York City would be the people. New York is one of a kind place where you can meet anyone and everyone.

The worst thing about New York City would be the subway delays and the fact that they always put too much milk and sugar in the coffee.

What is your earliest food memory?

Nigel: When I was still in elementary school, there was this stall on the street on my way home from school that would sell Indonesian chicken satay. It was so good I still can vividly remember the smell and the taste of it.

Wenny: I loved the homemade seafood dishes when I was young.

What’s the one food you can’t live without?

Nigel: Noodles!

Wenny: Rice!

Preferred method of transportation:

Train.… we have a love-hate relationship with it.

What is your most essential ingredient in the kitchen?

We consider the skill and knowledge of the chef to be the most essential ingredient in the kitchen. A good chef can always make magic with limited number of humble ingredients.

How do you think your food reflects your personal experience? Do you see this venture as an opportunity for cultural combination between your Indonesian roots and current lives in the United States?

While all of Moon Man menu items are designed to be a modernized version of Southeast Asian street desserts and snacks, all the recipes are still based on the traditional recipes. In a sense, Moon Man is a blend of both cultures, and we are carrying two very important missions within this venture. On one hand, it’s about introducing Southeast Asian desserts and snacks to New York City. On the other hand, it's to preserve the culture, since a lot of these street food are getting harder and more impossible to find in their place of origin.

What do you hope to accomplish with your first brick and mortar location that you couldn't with your market pop ups?

We are excited about this first brick and mortar location, since it will streamline a lot of our usual operations, and we won’t need to set up and break down each time. Having a fixed facility will allow us to expand our offerings even more.

When I think of the Lower East Side, I think of…

Diversity. The Lower East Side was once an immigrant neighborhood that has sustained many changes over the past few decades, yet somehow it has managed to maintain its cultural diversity.

Best thing about NYC and worst thing about NYC:

The best thing about New York City would be the people. New York is one of a kind place where you can meet anyone and everyone.

The worst thing about New York City would be the subway delays and the fact that they always put too much milk and sugar in the coffee.

What is your earliest food memory?

Nigel: When I was still in elementary school, there was this stall on the street on my way home from school that would sell Indonesian chicken satay. It was so good I still can vividly remember the smell and the taste of it.

Wenny: I loved the homemade seafood dishes when I was young.

What’s the one food you can’t live without?

Nigel: Noodles!

Wenny: Rice!

Preferred method of transportation:

Train.… we have a love-hate relationship with it.

What is your most essential ingredient in the kitchen?

We consider the skill and knowledge of the chef to be the most essential ingredient in the kitchen. A good chef can always make magic with limited number of humble ingredients.

How do you think your food reflects your personal experience? Do you see this venture as an opportunity for cultural combination between your Indonesian roots and current lives in the United States?

While all of Moon Man menu items are designed to be a modernized version of Southeast Asian street desserts and snacks, all the recipes are still based on the traditional recipes. In a sense, Moon Man is a blend of both cultures, and we are carrying two very important missions within this venture. On one hand, it’s about introducing Southeast Asian desserts and snacks to New York City. On the other hand, it's to preserve the culture, since a lot of these street food are getting harder and more impossible to find in their place of origin.

What do you hope to accomplish with your first brick and mortar location that you couldn't with your market pop ups?

We are excited about this first brick and mortar location, since it will streamline a lot of our usual operations, and we won’t need to set up and break down each time. Having a fixed facility will allow us to expand our offerings even more.

When I think of the Lower East Side, I think of…

Diversity. The Lower East Side was once an immigrant neighborhood that has sustained many changes over the past few decades, yet somehow it has managed to maintain its cultural diversity.

Best thing about NYC and worst thing about NYC:

The best thing about New York City would be the people. New York is one of a kind place where you can meet anyone and everyone.

The worst thing about New York City would be the subway delays and the fact that they always put too much milk and sugar in the coffee.

What is your earliest food memory?

Nigel: When I was still in elementary school, there was this stall on the street on my way home from school that would sell Indonesian chicken satay. It was so good I still can vividly remember the smell and the taste of it.

Wenny: I loved the homemade seafood dishes when I was young.

What’s the one food you can’t live without?

Nigel: Noodles!

Wenny: Rice!

Preferred method of transportation:

Train.… we have a love-hate relationship with it.

What is your most essential ingredient in the kitchen?

We consider the skill and knowledge of the chef to be the most essential ingredient in the kitchen. A good chef can always make magic with limited number of humble ingredients.