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Best Gourmet Grocery

  • The Brooklyn Kitchen Labs and the Meat Hook

    100 Frost St., nr. Meeker Ave., Williamsburg; 718-349-5032

    Part school, with two skylit “labs”; part butcher shop, led by sustainable-meat missionary Tom Mylan; and part kitchen-supply store, the 7,000-square-foot complex celebrates the true joy of cooking, and of eating, too. Its target demo: New York’s newest breed of foodie, the nose-to-tail-eating, kombucha-brewing, lacto-fermenting, rooftop-farming contingent that’s come to define the future of local food. The quirky curatorial touch encompasses bulk organic beans and grains from upstate New York, vinegars and oils poured from steel kegs into empty wine bottles, green coffee beans for home roasters, and xanthan gum for budding molecular gastronomists. An antique fridge houses yeast and hops for brewing beer, and the butcher case displays everything from pig’s feet and rabbit sausage to cult favorite Benton’s bacon and country ham. You’ll find pizza peels, sweet Maine shrimp, and cookbooks both big (Momofuku) and small (Greenpoint-Williamsburg CSA). What you won’t find, though, is a trace of arrogance or pretension. As the Labs’ website proclaims: “We are not a specialty food shop, but we specialize in food.”

From the 2010 Best of New York issue of New York Magazine