Butcher Block Brunch

by Cynthia Sin-Yi Cheng
November 10, 2010

The Meat Hook Brunch for TwoCelia Cheng

The Meat Hook
100 Frost St
(Manhattan Ave & Leonard St)
Brooklyn, NY 11211

I continue to be amazed by the unexpected “happenings” I keep discovering in Williamsburg, especially at The Brooklyn Kitchen. The place is a kitchen wonderland — a kitchenware and local food shop, a butcher shop, a lab space for cooking classes and events, and so much more. It’s a great community resource, full of surprises. Case in point: While showing Celia some of my new favorite places in my neighborhood, I was stopped in my tracks at The Meat Hook, the butcher shop located in The Brooklyn Kitchen. There was a sign next to the register advertising brunch for two. “Brunch?” I asked Ben, one of the butchers. “Two top every Saturday,” he said. “Fifty dollars per couple, from 11:30 onwards. Serving brunch and drinks until you can’t eat any more.”

The Meat Hook just launched this crazy but fun concept in October. The shop employees had been in the habit of cooking a big feast for themselves on Saturday afternoons, and they decided to start sharing it with two lucky customers. The two diners eat on the butcher block, right in front of the meat displays. “There are just three rules,” owner Tom Mylan said. “One, no menu. Two, all dishes are served family-style. Three, we will keep serving until one dish comes back unfinished. Once that happens, brunch is officially over.”

Here are some of the delectable offerings from a past brunch at The Meat Hook (which are right down my alley, as the drinks seem to be just as important as the dishes):

Coffee Bomb (coffee with daiginjo sake)
Apple with Spicy Pecan Butter
Scrapple Crostino
Buffalo Grass Vodka Pickle Back
Toad in a Long Dong Hole (a sausage with pork, roasted jalapenos, pepper jack cheese and Texas Pete hot sauce)
Bloody Maria

Cynthia Sin-Yi Cheng at The Meat HookCelia Cheng

And if this unique brunch discovery wasn’t enough for one day, we encountered another surreal surprise at The Meat Hook: a group of French butchers who were visiting from Le Boucher Bohème in Asnières. The French and American butchers were all gathered around the main square table, butchering away. What a sight! I had some good laughs with the French butchers who, incidentally, wore very fashionable asymmetrical aprons.

Just another happening afternoon in Williamsburg…

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