North Brooklyn Angels’ mobile kitchen spotlights two local entrepreneurs who fuel the weekday free lunch effort
By Felice Kirby and Philip Mauro
Is there a movement going on here? Local businesses are getting on board with the new Mobile Soup Kitchen food truck, a project of the North Brooklyn Angels. While scores of community residents have become regular volunteers in the weekday meal service for hungry neighbors, the Angels still face the hard costs of “stuff.” Precious fuel has been coming to the Angels from a growing roster of helpful small businesses in the area.
Since the big blue truck hit our streets in June, the mobile soup kitchen has served over 16,000 free meals in five locations of Greenpoint and Williamsburg. This could not have happened without people like Josh Cohen and Jim Munson. Who doesn’t love it when our businesses give back?
Jim Munson began his work life in Brooklyn as an early member of the Brooklyn Brewery staff. Inspired by Steve Hindy (a Brooklyn Brewery founder), Munson opened Brooklyn Roasting Co. in 2009. This company thoughtfully sources their coffee beans and roasts them in the Brooklyn Navy Yard. Their service kiosks are blossoming all over North Brooklyn. Free Brooklyn Roasting Co. coffee graces every Angels’ truck outreach event. Jim is inspired by our borough: “… one of its most powerful characteristics is that it welcomes people from so many backgrounds.”
Josh Cohen and the Angels have a different relationship. He runs the North Brooklyn Angles commissary in the beautiful and historic Mount Carmel church on Havemeyer Street. Josh is busy! He’s an owner and partner in 10 North Brooklyn restaurants & bars including Anella, Lilia, Jimmy’s Diner, Chez Ma Tante, St. Vitas, and Casa Publica. A Brooklyn native, he and partner, Blair, are raising three young children here. Plus Josh is on Community Board 1, the North Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, and the Open Space Alliance. Josh manages to turn out up to 200 meals each weekday. “Helping is not something I think too much about, it’s instinctual and feeding people is a way to show them we care,” says Cohen.
The North Brooklyn Angels are on the lookout for more helping businesses or volunteers. They especially seek experienced cooks to volunteer on a regular basis in their kitchen.
To volunteer, donate to, or learn more about the North Brooklyn Angels check out their informative and inviting website: http://www.northbrooklynangels.org