, a new, independent grocery store located in downtown Brooklyn, will open April 22nd at 200 Schermerhorn Street. Owner Moe Issa, a borough native, is working with chef Cesar Ramirez to outfit the 6,000-square-foot space with a deluge of pret-a-manger goods to be available alongside the regular groceries: sandwiches, meatballs, soups, terrines, and so on. The store will sell such a vast amount of cheese and beer it will likely blow your mind. Ramirez has snagged a real sushi chef to make sushi throughout the day (as in, not just some dude to oversee each morning's epic batch of outsourced California rolls that are left to hang out all day in a refrigerated display). The idea here seems to be real food, not boutique food.
BF will brew Intelligentsia Coffee and sell baked goods from Choice, Pain d'Avignon, and Il Forno in their small cafe section, and Ramirez plans to add his own house-made ice creams and sorbets to the lineup when summer fruit comes into season. Local delivery will be available, and Issa speculates that 90% of the store’s take away packaging is biodegradable (no plastic bags at BF). Drinking cups, for example, are made from corn starch.
Phase two of Brooklyn Fare will involve a chef’s table-oriented dinner spot that will be open 3-4 nights a week inside the grocery store’s commissary kitchen, for up to ten guests at a time. The chef’s table is literally Ramirez’s real, working table—one huge, square piece of seamless stainless steel occupying the center of the kitchen opposite the stoves. Ramirez and his cooks will prepare five-course meals at a “super reasonable price.” The chef said yesterday he wants to make the food and pricing of the place accessible to everyone. “It won’t be snobbish,” said Ramirez yesterday. “Everyone should feel comfortable eating here.” Brooklyn Fare will also offer cooking classes inside the kitchen, and the restaurant will be BYOB—with an ad hoc sommelier making wine recommendations when diners make reservations. Helmed by Ramirez, the restaurant will open in May.