Sometimes, a restaurant and its location are so intertwined that one seemingly can’t exist without the other. This is the case with The Good Fork in Red Hook.
When The Good Fork opened 10 years ago getting to Red Hook was a serious undertaking. The area was a world away from the rest of Brooklyn; cut off by the Brooklyn Queens Expressway and the Hugh Carey Tunnel, then known as the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel. Buses were infrequent, and there was no Uber, or even an IKEA shuttle or water taxi.
But the neighborhood’s unique, remote feeling appealed to some people, among them Sohui Kim and Ben Schneider, a married couple who moved to Coffey Street in the early 2000s. They opened The Good Fork because they wanted to work together (she was a chef and he was an actor and woodworker) and they wanted to entertain more people than they could in their backyard. He built the restaurant in a rowhouse on Van Brunt Street; she created the seasonally-driven, New American and Asian-influenced menu.
Within a month of opening, they had a rave review in The New York Times. The location, surely, was part of the charm.
In Peter Meehan’s review, talk of Red Hook preceded talk of the food: “What Red Hook needed was a place with an accessible menu that neighborhood folks could rely on and bridge and tunnel folks (that’s you, Manhattanites) could use as an anchor for a night out in the neighborhood. What Red Hook needed, it turns out, was the Good Fork.” (more…)
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