At MONK’S, our philosophy is: Fresh Food Tastes Good. We make classic American comfort foods from whole plant-based ingredients. We hand select produce from local markets and source our other ingredients from ethical distributors. We think food should come from farms and kitchens, not labs or factories.
Monks Founders Chris and Rebecca started making our signature Monk’s Meats seitan in their Bed-Stuy kitchen in 2010. Long time veg/vegans, Chris and Rebecca were drawn to seitan, an all natural alternative to animal meat made from wheat, to answer that age old question: “But, where do you get your protein?” While working Manhattan day jobs, they tirelessly honed their recipes and techniques, fed friends and family their experiments, and quietly perfected the art of making wheat meat. In 2011, Monk’s Meats began popping up in local grocery coolers and on bar and restaurant menus around New York City. Every weekend since 2012, MONK’S has been serving inventive sandwiches and small plates featuring Monk’s Meats seitan, house made sauces and pickles, and fresh local produce at Smorgasburg and other festivals, flea markets and food fares. Every week, our small team hand produces and deliveries hundreds of pounds of Monk’s Meats seitan to restaurants, apartments, and offices across five boroughs.
Over the past five years, we’ve received an overwhelming reception from NY’s vegan and vegetarian community. We have reached the limit where our current capacity just can’t satisfy all of your demand. Every weekend, we hear you asking where you can get more of our products. Well, we have found a place!
Our vision is to create New York’s premier gourmet vegan Delicatessen and Kitchen. MONK’S is a place reminiscent of the butcher shops of old New York, but with a conscious difference - an un-butcher’s shop. At MONK’S, you will find our signature Monk’s Meats wheatsteaks, meatballs, and sausages, as well as vegan charcuterie, fresh tofu and yuba, vegan cheeses and spreads, housemade sauces, seasonal side dishes, beverages, sandwiches and more. Yes, there will be sandwiches, lots of our sandwiches, available every day of the week - not just on weekends.
But it’s more than just the retail shop. MONK’S Delicatessen and Kitchen will combine our production kitchen with the retail space in one location. Behind the stocked deli case, an open and busy kitchen reveals the processes behind our house made products. Stainless steel counters, a butcher block, gas range, smoking cabinets, meat slicer, and baking ovens are hard at work. A window allows you to peek into a climate controlled aging room for nut cheeses and vegan charcuterie products. Out of sight, walk in refrigerators, additional prep space, and dishwashing facility bolster our ability to produce more foods and bigger events, festivals and markets.
WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO WITH THE MONEY?
We are looking to raise at least $50,000 to fill in the gaps as we build out the storefront/kitchen. This Kickstarter project will also help us acquire some specialty equipment we need to make larger quantities and varieties of our products: 80L tilt skillet, smoking and steaming cabinets, a climate controlled aging room, and fresh soy milk/tofu making equipment.
WILL YOU JOIN US?
We love feeding you. It’s our calling here at MONK’S. We want you to enjoy eating everyday.
Whether you need to swing by and grab something to make for dinner at home on a Monday or you want to buy a sandwich and hang out in the shop, we want you to eat well, to eat tasty fresh food, because we know FRESH FOOD TASTES GOOD.
Risks and challenges
A project this ambitious is not cheap. Over the years, we’ve learned how to make more with less. We’ve learned the beauty of clean simple well-crafted space that values function over frills. We’ve also learned to expect the unexpected. Real estate and construction cost in NYC are significant. Emergency expenses can cause delays to small projects. We are working with a professional architect and expeditor to help shepherd our project through the city building department and permit process. Gap funding is often essential to handle these last minute challenges that could stall opening.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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