Gourmet vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free restaurants are scarce, even in New York City where healthy cuisine is often relegated to crunchy cafes and take-out buffets. So Maimonide of Brooklyn (525 Atlantic Avenue), is a welcome addition to downtown Brooklyn's food scene.
Called M.O.B. for short, the hip eatery with a live DJ, communal tables, vintage light fixtures, wall art featuring fruits and vegetables used in the menu and poetry by local scribes is the brainchild of Cyril Aouizerate. The cuisine -- affectionately known as avant-garde vegetarian food for carnivores -- is an inviting and as eclectic as the light-filled space. Dishes include hearty veggie burgers with kickass homemade ketchup, dried fruit saucissons, vegan chicken nuggets, and open-faced sandwiches that are topped with wholesome ingredients called MOBs.
|Scenes from the opening party at Maimonide of Brooklyn./Photos by John Carluccio|
|M.O.B. founder, Cyril.|
Aouizerate, the co-founder of Urbantech and Mama Shelter in France, has combined his love for urban planning, architecture and philosophy in the creative process behind M.O.B. Legendary French chef, Alain Senderens, contributed to the menu with Executive Chef Neal Harden, formerly of Pure Food & Wine.
M.O.B’s design is an homage to '90s hip-hop culture (Afrika Bambaataa was a special guest at the opening party and t-shirts for sale feature the Notorious B.I.G. and She's Gotta Have It-era Spike Lee), Brooklyn and the healthy-living beliefs of the famous Jewish philosopher Maimonides. The arches of the Brooklyn Bridge lend their shape to the doorways and the MOB sandwiches.
Soon the restaurant will expand to include poetry readings, live music and dancing.