The Brooklyn Kitchen, a company founded in 2006 with the goal of helping people burnish their cooking skills, is bringing its popular services to Sunset Park’s Industry City, expanding culinary education programming for those who aspire to cook more at home.
Currently operating out of Williamsburg, the Brooklyn Kitchen will offer a variety of services in the massive waterfront space, including high quality classes in what is dubbed a ‘popover” cooking lab.
Owner Taylor Erkkinen told this paper she is excited about the move. “We are venturing out to a part of Brooklyn that is more accessible to the rest of New York,” she said, adding that she and the company are preparing for the L train shutdown coming in 2019. “Williamsburg is going to get a lot less accessible so one of the things I’m looking to do is gain a foothold in another part of the city. We’ve been taking a look at where our customers are coming from and they’re coming from Park Slope, Brooklyn Heights and Cobble Hill — places where it will be easier for them to get to Sunset Park.”
Starting as a shop for cooking tools, the Brooklyn Kitchen grew into something bigger beginning in 2008, when, said Erkkinen, “We started doing classes and hit upon a group of young people that were interested in learning to cook. So we started more classes and branched out to open up a butcher shop and grocery store in 2009.”
For the past eight years, Erkkinen has been running a business that combines both retail and educational components.
“I want to change the world by teaching people how to cook for themselves because I think that’s something that’s missing,” she said, adding that she is excited to bring that aspect of the business to Industry City. “What we try to do with our educational program is be more elemental and essential. We want to bring experience, good habits, practices and flavor combinations that encourage people to bring what they’ve learned into their own kitchen. A lot of schools treat recreational cooking as a night out. While I appreciate the business that people are doing, providing an alternative to dinner and a movie, we try to sneak in some real learning as well.”
Although, to start, there won’t be an extensive retail element in the Industry City space, Erkkinen said she’s leaving open the possibility of expansion, noting, “We may have some items for sale but it won’t be the same level of retail that we’ve been doing in Williamsburg. It’s wait and see at the moment to see where the marketplace is going.”
She is also excited to be a part of the Sunset and Industry City community. “I’ve been going there frequently,” she said. “It’s a nice spot to work. I’ve been enjoying a lot of the food there and I’m really excited to work with the community.”
According to Erkkinen, the move should be complete after the Fourth of July with public classes on evenings and weekends. For more information, visit www.thebrooklynkitchen.com.