Real tortilla heads know that masa, and not the more common corn flour, is the only way to go if you’re looking to get the truest flavor and the most nutrition out of your, say, plate of quesadillas, or chilaquiles. At least, that’s the driving force behind For All Things Good, a little Mexican cafe and working molino, or corn mill, which recently opened in Bed-Stuy. Owned by Bruno Diaz and Carlos Macias, the place represents the culmination of years of education, experimentation, and logistical planning, resulting in a comfortable neighborhood spot with an appealing menu of tortilla-based Mexican dishes.
Diaz and Macias source all of their corn — yellow and blue — from small farms in Mexico which practice the traditional system known as milpa, in which different crops are all planted together, and land lies fallow for years at a time to revitalize itself naturally rather than through artificial fertilizers. The flavor is more subtle than you may be used to, but it all tastes screamingly fresh and healthy.
The neighborhood has shown up in force for Diaz and Macias's cooking, and last Saturday morning all of the carefully distanced sidewalk tables were full, with even more folks standing around waiting for takeout. I ate as much of the menu as possible, and all of it was good.
There are three tetelas on offer, which are grilled tortillas folded into triangles and stuffed with, in order, Black Bean and Lime, Chihuahua Cheese and Salsa Verde, and my surprise favorite, Hibiscus Flower and Salsa Chipotle, which was delightfully sweet and spicy. Small but sufficient mounds of guacamole and salsa accompany the trio for dipping.
The Breakfast Tlayudita is a showstopper of a dish, with beans, melted cheese, avocado, chili oil, and a runny egg piled atop a craggy, crackling tortilla. There's also a Mezcal Mushroom version of this, starring those dramatic-looking hen of the woods, which is equally fun to eat.
I'm an always-get-the-quesadilla sort of a guy, and the Squash Blossom one here, loaded with cheese and packed into a beautiful blue shell, did not disappoint. Chilaquiles, a couple of Memelas, a few antojitos (snacks) like Summer Esquites and Mango with Chili round out the food offerings.
For All Things Good also features a full coffee program and housemade drinks such as Horchata and Hibiscus Agua Fresca. The interior looks potentially bright and cheerful, but for now you'll only see it briefly when you place your order. Both to-go and to-stay meals are then brought outside to you by one of the staffers. Masks are required, of course, and you should always include an inordinately large tip whenever you're dining out anywhere these days.
For All Things Good is located at 343 Franklin Avenue, at the corner of Greene Avenue, and is currently open on Tuesday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (forallthingsgoodbk.com)