Food, Glorious Food

The entrance to FOOD on Prince at Wooster. In the lower-left corner of the photo you can also see the entrance to SoHo Plagroup.

The restaurant Food opened in late 1971 at 127 Prince Street at the corner of Wooster.  It was a place that employed struggling SoHo artists and  served inexpensive but hearty food to the local community, at least at first, until it was written up somewhere and became a destination spot for uptowners as well as out-of-towners.  Although some people do not remember it so fondly for a variety of reasons—the owners were unfriendly, the food was overrated, etc.—I think most people miss it.  It was, for a long time, one of the only places to eat in SoHo other than Fanelli’s and a few greasy spoons.  It was also WAY ahead of its time in that it served fresh, seasonal foods cooked using local ingredients in an open kitchen.  This may be de rigeur these days, but back then it was virtually unheard of.

I LOVED going there as a child.  Those chunky soups, the thick, yummy slices of wheat bread with sweet butter (“fancy” butter to me—I was raised on salted butter), and those enormous slices of carrot cake big enough to feed a family of four!  And for my friend, Ingrid, it was her first place of employment after moving to New York from Germany.  “I think they paid me five dollars an hour, which was a lot of money,”  she remembers.  Working only part-time, she was able to support herself and her young daughter on those wages.  Ingrid would bring her daughter to work in the morning at 7 AM, where she would sleep curled up on Ingrid’s coat on the floor until it was time to catch the school bus on the corner of Prince and West Broadway, in front of the bodega (more on that soon—that bodega deserves it’s own post).  That was the mid-1970’s.

The original owners of Food moved on and apparently handed it over (for no money) in 1974 to one of Food’s waitresses, and after that the restaurant changed hands several times.  It kept its name and general theme, but it was transformed from a cooperative into a profit-making enterprise and by the late-1970’s it had long lost it’s homey-ness.  I still went there often, however.  In the early 1980’s, I was finally old enough to go to restaurants on my own, and I would bring my Stuyvesant friends there and they just thought I was soooooo cool for introducing them to a real bohemian hangout.  Unfortunately, it was actually more like a stop on a SoHo “reality tour,” similar to when the double-decker bus stops at the Jamaican beef patty place on Flatbush for a “true” Brooklyn experience.  Food closed its doors shortly after I started high school, so I guess around 1985.  Although the more popular it became, the farther it moved from it’s original incarnation, Food was a consistent fixture in my childhood and adolescence, a place with big pieces of delicious cake that I only ever saw through a child’s wide eyes.

Gordon Matta-Clark and his partners, co-founders of FOOD, in front of what was to become one of the first restaurants in SoHo (photo by Richard Landry)

Here is a video of Ingrid talking about her experience working at Food:

New York Magazine’s January 3, 1972 issue includes a review of the recently opened FOOD on page 65.

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62 Responses to “Food, Glorious Food”

  1. mark gabor Says:

    I seem to remember an artist named Carol who pretty much ran Food when it it first opened. There was a certain snob appeal when the place was new — it seemed the staff was always somewhat aloof from the people (local & otherwise) who ate there. Unless you “knew” someone, in which case you were part of the “in-group.” Does anyone else recall that atmosphere?

    The menu wasn’t outstanding by today’s health food standards, though, as Ingrid mentioned in the video, the soups were creative and delicious.

    The space itself had an anti-style style. Very plain, very raw — not unlike many of Soho’s early living lofts.

    If I’m not mistaken, the bodega on the NW corner of Prince and W. B’way was really the first and only grocery store serving the earliest residents & galleries (including my own “Flatsfixed”) in Soho, early 70s. We used to order the most sinfully tasteful peppersteak-with-onions heroes — don’t even think “healthy”!

    These details emerging from my memory are blowing me away!

    • Yukie Says:

      Speaking of that bodega, does anyone remember the name of the main guy who ran it? He’s still in the neighborhood and I see him from time to time. Next time I will ask him about what he remembers from those days!

      • Jo Gangemi Says:

        That’s Juan…… I don’t know his last name. Not so long ago he was the super of my current building. He must be the super of a lot of buildings because he has a huge ring of keys. The other person from the bodega was a “full bodied” guy with a mustache. I might have Juan’s last name somewhere from when he was the one to call. I just saw him yesterday.

    • Carol Goodden Says:

      Hello. I am Carol Goodden. I now live in New Mexico (near Ruidoso). The film of Ingrid is somewhat mis-leading in that Gordon and I had passed on FOOD to a young woman named Ruby. Ruby ran off to England to start a boutique and the landlords repossessed FOOD – the space, the equipment, the tables, chairs etc. The next entity to opened FOOD (I was not able to legally stop them from using our name as it was too “generic,” must have been who hired Ingrid. I did not know her. It was true that Joan Shapiro worked as a luncheon chef in the mornings and Shael Shapiro was very helpful in getting whatever paperwork we needed through city bureaucracy. I loved being able to see the Milton Glaser drawing of the original FOOD with all the different chairs. Much of the article is inaccurate in reporting who cooked what. It was not a commune but I did have the idea of rotating the cooking and responsibilities in a business partnership with myself, Suzy Harris, and Rachel Lew. This idea did not work out. Tina Girouard became the next closest help to me and brought a lot of Cajun influence into FOOD. Gordon Matta-Clark was my “life partner” at that time. He had the idea for Guest Chef days, he cooked whenever he was a Guest Chef – his most famous dinner being the “bone dinner.” My email address is I don’t see anywhere to Create a new Account and so I don’t know how to log in.

      • Yukie Says:

        Hello Carol! It’s so exciting to hear from you. Thank you for sharing your memories. I started this blog precisely so that those who were in and around SoHo in the 1970’s could record what they remember—before they forget. Memory is unreliable and fleeting at best, but often it is all we have. Readers cannot log in to the blog (other than through comments) itself to make changes, but if you would like to write something or send in images, I would be honored to put up anything on your behalf with your byline as a “guest post.” Thanks, again, and please visit again and often!

  2. SoHo Man Says:

    Food closed in 1988.
    I remember it being one of,…if not the first,…”natural” type reastaurants in Manhattan.
    In the vein of what would become that whole “organic” vibe and style that you see everywhere today.

    The thing was this….
    In New York City you had three kinds of traditional eating establishments.
    – Fancy Shmancy white table cloth / make a reservation type places.
    – Homey ethnic neighborhood restaurants (Italian, Jewish, Chinese, Puerto Rican, etc)
    – Diners.

    Food stood out in being completely different, having a very different perspective and style from the traditional NYC restaurant. And was really the sign of what was to come.

    • Carol Goodden Says:

      The original FOOD was “ended” in the beginning of 1974. The other restaurants which took over FOOD’s space, and used the name, were indeed quite different. Thank you for remembering what the original FOOD was all about.

  3. Bowery Boy Says:

    Great post. Reminded me of the diner (greasy spoon?) on Spring St. near Wooster, now Manhattan Bistro, which I think was the last diner in Soho. It closed before I became a waiter at Spring Natural back when it was next to West Bway.

    • Yukie Says:

      I don’t remember the diner on Spring, but Manhattan Bistro has been there for a long time, at least since 1986! I do remember the lunchonette on Crosby and Prince, where Savoy is now. My mother used to take me there to have grilled cheese sandwiches and milkshakes served in paper cones that rested in these stainless steel holders. I was only four years old, but the memory of many yummy (though not very healthy for today’s standards) lunches has remained vivid through the years.

    • David McD. Says:

      I am pretty sure that where Manhattan Bistro is now was until the early 1980’s Samaria, or Sam and Mike’s (after the wife/husband team that owned and ran it). It was more cafeteria-style Italian than greasy spoon.

  4. James Taylor Says:

    Am I correct in thinking that the building that once housed FOOD now sells Mallorcan footwear?

    • Yukie Says:

      Are you referring to the Camper Store? If so, FOOD was actually across the street on the northwest corner of Prince and Wooster. The last time I noticed, the space now houses a Lucky Brand store.

  5. SoHo Man Says:

    I rememba the greasy spoon diner that used to be on the corner of Spring and Broadway had a dog that lived in the apt right above. And every time you walked past that corner you would always hear it barking! : )

  6. richard kostelanetz Says:

    trust you guys know my SOHO; THE RISE AND FALL OF AN ARTISTS’ COLONY (Routledge, 2003). I wanted to reprint, offset, the Underground Gourmet review of Food, but the publisher decided upon more conventional illustrations.

    Consider the Food reflected SoHo, rather than the East Village, initially in its spaciousness.

    Carol’s last name was Gooden.

    • Yukie Says:

      Love your book. Anyone interested in the history of SoHo should read it.

      By the way, is that Charlie Clough on the fire escape on the cover?

  7. Bethsheba Says:

    Nice to see Ingrid up here! Hello Ingrid and Anna!

    I wanted to add a little more information about the Food discussion. When it first opened in 1971 the local artists were invited to come and cook for the evening. There were many that participated. I believe there is a list some place that has a partial record. The artists rotated on a weekly basis. I remember one meal created by Phillip Glass, The Artist Jackie Winsor was on his crew and she asked me to be the bus girl. Which was quite an honor. I was 5 years old. It was very exciting and I remember looking at the OX tail soup and not really knowing what to do with it or how to eat it. I was instructed by the Artist Keith Sonnier to “Suck the marrow out of the bone.” This was very “European” for me at the time. Gordon Matta- Clark was an real artist with food in general. He also held a huge pig roast under the Williamsburg bridge in 1971. I think just before Food opened, he fed over 500 people. It was going on at the same time as the San Genarro festival in little Italy and for many years I thought that the two events were one in the same. In 1974 Matta- Clark fled the US due to a warrant issued for his arrest for the buildings he had ” defaced” ( He also owned them). But the city was not happy with what he was doing. Gordon had an Identical twin brother named Sebastian Matta- Clark, who was also a chef at food. The two brothers tragically died in the mid 1970’s. It was Tragic! It left a very sad and dark cloud around the area because the two were a magnanimous duo. They were both very handsome and charismatic. They were also the off-springs of the Chilean surrealist painter Roberto Matta. Their collective energy was infectious and they somehow got people to work as a group.

    Gordon Matta- Clark and Jeffery Lew started the free gallery space at 112 Greene street in the very early 1970’s. This was a place that anyone could show their work, a community that is still there today. My vote for ” The King of Greene Street” would Matta- Clark and Lew. Because they represent what was really happening in the early “SOHO” story. They constantly and consistently created the scene.

    Just my two-cents for what it’s worth.

    • Caroline McCoy Says:

      Bethsheba – I love your memories but I do need to make some corrections. Firstly, the artist cooks did not rotate on a weekly basis but rather on a daily basis, at least at first, for the two others that I chose to share these responsibilities with – Rachel Lew and Suzy Harris. Secondly, it sounds like memories are a little confused… but then….I don’t remember Phillip Glass being a Guest Chef. It could be that Jackie Winsor was on his “crew,” but as Jackie was married to Keith Sonnier at the time, and Joanne Akalaitis was married to Phillip Glass at the time…I wonder at the accuracy of that. Additionally, the ox-tail stew was part of Gordon’s famous “bone dinner,” which I helped him cook that Guest Chef evening and I don’t remember it being a part of anyone else’s dinner ….but then….memories fail. I also helped Gordon with his roasted pig dinner under the Brooklyn Bridge where he supposedly fed 500 people ham sandwiches. We roasted that pig all night while watching the Jehovah Witness lights blinking across the river saying “The Watchtower, The Watchtower.”

      Gordon did not own the buildings that he made his sculptures in. Particularly the Pier Piece – that building was owned by NYC and yes, he was pursued for defacing that building.

      Gordon’s twin brother, Bataan, who jumped out of our 8th story window (suicide), never was a cook at FOOD. Bataan was dysfunctional. Bataan died in 1976 and Gordon followed due to pancreatic cancer in 1978. They were not both handsome and charismatic. Gordon certainly was. Bataan never left his room, never spoke to strangers, was unkempt, pudgy and extremely psychologically ill.

      Jeffrey Lew started 112 Greene St. gallery. Gordon was his closest friend, but it was Jeffrey’s space.

      • Carol Goodden Says:

        I have yet to learn how to work this site. That name should read Carol Goodden, not Caroline McCoy.

      • Bethsheba Says:

        HI Carol,

        I totally remember you, Thanks for the clarifications and adding your memories here. I was pretty young so some of my memories are probably interwoven. It’s just wonderful to be getting a response from you Carol!

        Jackie and my dad were good friends back then and I am pretty sure that she is the one that brought me to Food for the first time. Most probably she was baby sitting. Was Phillp Glass ever there as guest chef? I distinctly remember him.

        What I remember most about Gordon at the restaurant was
        how happy he was and how friendly the staff was. Once I began busing someones table and I got in trouble for doing so. Probably because they were not done eating..
        I remember when you changed it and put a bus station in along the wall as you entered, so that everyone could bus their own dishes. Funny what children choose to remember..
        I’m not sure how I could be confusing Gordon with his brother. I remember coming how from being away for the summer and my father and Gordon Hart telling me about the suicide. He was the first person I knew who died that way.
        Funny what we remember..

        Its lovely to hear from you!!

  8. Yukie Says:

    This is great! Thanks for all of these great memories.

  9. Bethsheba Says:

    You are Welcome Yukie.

    The Dinner on West Broadway and Spring was called The Orange Tree. It was opened for breakfast and lunch.

  10. Anne Says:

    I used to come in from Long Island on weekends as a teen and this was my favorite place to eat. I was just fascinated with Soho, especially at night (wasn’t there a store called Barone that was about the only place open on WB?) This was in the mid to late 70s. I recall that the windows at FOOD were always steamed up. PS: We underage kids also went to Smokestakes Lightning and for some reason they served us beer and we were thrilled.

  11. Pat Says:

    I used to eat at Food and the Orange Tree. For some reason I remember the Orange Tree as being on Houston Street, I could be wrong though, it has been a long time. The Orange Tree had a “travelling omelette” on the menu named after one of the staff, I think, someone’s travelling omelette. It was good. Hard to find similar food today in the city that is wholesome and affordable.

  12. Meredith Kurtzman Says:

    The long diner on Broadway and Spring was called the Eagle.I have a photo of the cooks somewhere.Sanmaria was an Italian cafeteria of sorts.My sister lived next to the bodega on W. Broadway and Prince,where they’d occasionally roast a pig in the gravel lot net door.

  13. harry nudel Says:

    Talkin’ about FOOD..does anyone remember at Italian guy who used to sell fish in the late afternoons, prob. from Fulton St., in the early to mid 70’s, on the corner of Wooster and Spring, right next to the parking lot, i remember buying scungili from him…he would sit on the steps on an adjacent building and spread out a blanket also he sold fish out out a barrel (tho this mite have been my romantic imagination), he & we could have been in Calabria..

  14. The Holy Trinity « The SoHo Memory Project Says:

    […] restaurant Food (see my post on Food here) was founded as a cooperative restaurant by eight local artists in late 1971 at 127 Prince Street […]

    • Carol Goodden Says:

      Hi Bethsheba – who is Gordon Hart? I am interested because Hart is very much a family name (my family). No, I don’t remember Philip Glass being one of the Guest Chef’s, but then I am old and can’t always trust my memory these days.

      • Bethsheba Says:

        Good morning Carol,

        Gordon Hart is an old family friend. He used to live on Spring Street about the original Robert Wilson theater. He is also an Abstract painter. My father and he worked on the interior construction of the Dwan and Weber galleries .I think my dad must have met him in Soho while he was working on the construction of that theater. I just found a great Biography on his work.. So I attached it for you. Let me know if you would like to contact him I have his e-mail.

        I am so happy that you have posted these memories and facts about food. You cleared up some confusion for me. Now I know the images in my mind are of Gordon and not Bataan.

        I think this is the best part of the Memory Project. We get to share what we remember and as more stories are being posted a more genuine portrait is formed.

      • Bethsheba Says:


        It’s really wonderful to hear from you.

        I would really love to know what you have been up too since you left FOOD and Gordon passed away so tragically. Have you continued in the culinary arts or have you begun something completely new?

      • Carol Goodden Says:

        Hi Bethsheba – wow – that’s quite a question. I think I am that kind of person that gets extremely involved in whatever subject of interest but then when I feel I am at the top of that learning ladder, my interest is peaked by some other subject. Interwoven with just general curiosity and love of learning, was the need to make a living – however. So, after FOOD I did some real estate brokering and that let me to the renovation of a 12-story building across from the WTC, on Liberty St. That project was so successful, and attention-getting, that I was picked up by a construction company and did a lot of renovations of old buildings into Class A Multiple Dwellings. In 1985 I left NYC, at least part time and bought some property in upstate NY. There I filled a need for a surveyor’s office, being the adjunct office to a licensed surveyor while I managed the office in a different town. After that I decided to tackle college again so went to Antioch and got an MA in clinical psychology and practiced for about 7 years, all the time keeping horses as a subject in my life and learning hunter/jumper.

        In 1995 I formed a partnership of 16 people in NY and purchased a very classy Quarter Horse racehorse and decided to follow his career out west. I lived briefly in El Paso, TX and then moved to the mountains in Ruidoso where this horse was training. He did not win the million dollar All American, even tho he might have been a close contender, given better luck, and so I became a graphic artist. Then I married and we moved to a very remote place, Nogal, NM. I tried day-trading for a while and when things were booming, so was I, but then things changed! As I was riding young horses, people began giving me their young horses to train, or start, and that became a living for a while. After about six years of starting 6 colts a day for several different ranches, I wore out and have now gone back to just riding the mountains for myself, slinging my good camera about, and writing short stories now and then. I don’t seem to be compelled to do anything but ride. It keeps me physically fit and healthy. I earned the right to say I am a Level 4 Parelli student and work on riding bareback and bridleless when I have the right horse to do that with.

        I have always loved to cook and still throw the occasional dinner party when the pocketbook allows. So you see – jack of some trades and master of quite a few, but not enough to be “famous.”

      • Bethsheba Says:

        Good morning Carol,

        Thank you for answering my questions.. You certainly are renaissance woman Carol. Raising and riding horses sounds like fun and I’m sure a lot of work. Living out west is certainly far less stressful then the city life.

        I also enjoy writing and taking photographs. NM sounds like a lovely place to do that. I have to admit that I enjoy the west coast rural life style very much. If I were to live in NYC again, it would have to like it was back then.

        Have you published any of your stories?

        I would love to hear some of your personal FOOD stories. If you are willing to share them here. What are some of the memorable moments for you? Did you have a favorite dish ? Who were your best customers ? Worst customers?.

      • Carol Goodden Says:

        Hi again. Am wondering if this is the place for all this personal stuff. Seems to me things like the posting on pizzerias and their history is more like it. I posted my email on that first introductory post. Perhaps you could write me?

      • Bethsheba Says:

        Absolutely Carol.

    • Carol Goodden Says:

      Hello the Holy Trinity – it is not true that FOOD was a cooperative restaurant and it was not founded by eight local artists. That information seems to be taken from the Glaser/Snyder article, which was inaccurate. Gordon Matta-Clark, my love and life partner at the time, suggested that I start a restaurant, after I had hosted a major dinner party in NoHo and he and I had just started “being together.” I agreed, provided that he would be involved, and he agreed. I then hunted for a space and went to the Comidas Criollas, on the corner of Prince and Wooster and negotiated them out of the remainder of their lease. A Sub-Chapter S Corporation was formed (solely mine) to own the entity of FOOD. I went to Suzy Harris and Rachel Lew and asked them if they would join in with me as partners in thirds, financially and work responsibility. They initially agreed but rather quickly decided not to invest financially and soon after decided the work was more than they wished to contribute. So I asked Tina Girouard to be employed as my assistant. We initially shared the cooking responsibilities, amongst myself, Tina, Suzy and Rachel, rotating daily. Robert Prado was our initial lunch chef. Joanne Akalaitis (married to Philip Glass at the time) was our desert chef. Couples from Madbrook Farm in VT came down to bake bread at night. But all were employed. The four of us contributed in making up the menus, at least the dinner menus. But it was more on a conversational level. I ended up being the sole manager, with assistants such as Tina and later Bob Kushner. Almost all of the employees were artists, but they worked there, for a salary. I gave lots of freedom because one of the things I wanted to provide, besides good food, was a place where artists could be employed without worrying about a strict schedule or losing their job if they had to leave for a show. Gordon designed the physical space of FOOD, I paid for everything that went into furnishing it with tables, chairs and equipment. So the initial idea was a business partnership of three (myself and Gordon, being “one”, and Suzy and Rachel, but that failed. Gordon was the “name” and I was the “organization.”

  15. Yukie Says:

    Again, thanks for the clarification, Carol! Since Bethsheba and I were only young children back then, we have to basically go on what the other “grownups” remember, filling in here and there with our own memories. It’s so wonderful to have your input. Thanks, again!

  16. adriana banana Says:

    I need carol goodden contact cause of the photos rights. anyone???
    adriana banana (brasil)

  17. Mapping Memories « The SoHo Memory Project Says:

    […] (very) roughly to create a sort of oral history map.  Videos of her talking about her experiences working at the restaurant Food and about living on the Bowery have appeared on this blog in the […]

  18. andrea aranow Says:

    I wonder if any of you can give me a current contact for Rachel Lew

    • Carol Goodden Says:

      I can put you in touch with Rachel, but I need your email address to do so, so email me. I will pass your request on to her. If she knows you, she will respond, if not, you should email me your reason for wanting to contact her so that she can decide to respond or not. I believe you can see my email address, if not, Yukie has it.

  19. White Zinfandel | Carla Pernambuco Says:

    […] York. A revista é mensal, temática, e já está no segundo número. O primeiro foi dedicado à Food, um dos primeiros restaurantes do Soho, aberto em 71 na esquina da Prince com Wooster e que era […]

  20. Maria Jervelycke Belfrage Says:

    My name is Maria, I came to NYC in early october -86. In a week or two I got my first job – at Food restaurant on Prince&Wooster sts! I stayed there quite a while, worked my way from sandwichmaker/saladperson to assistant manager and ended upp as a cook until february -89. Those were some of my best years! It’s really interesting to read about those early years of Food history, in the 70’s and of course the place must have changed a lot over the years. But let me tell you, we had a great time working there! People from all over the world were coming and going on the pay roll, germans, italians, cubans, haitians, domincans, islarelis, englishmen, australians, danish, finnish and swedish girls and guys, dancers, actors, writers and all kinds of free spirited souls! We had a great time, working and then hanging out together! So Food will always have a special place in my heart!

  21. DCC Says:

    I was about 14 or 15 when I went to Soho for the first time and I believe it was 1971. I came with my art class and my art teacher and I went to a gallery for the first time. It was an exhibition on a painter name Joan Semmel and my eyes were wide open because the paintings were very large and the people in them were naked! Afterwards, we went to lunch to a very cool place named Food. The lunch was great and it was lots of fun being at Food. I continued to eat at Food and to enjoy the meals even after it changed hands. I will never forget the large window in front and the sign. Those were the days!

  22. Edward Says:

    I first went to Soho in the 1970’s because the AYH, American Youth Hostels had a store, one or two flights up from the street, which later moved east to a street level store. I also used to go to Canal street and visit the electronics stores – particularly the GREAT “TransAm Electronics”.

  23. Lily H Says:

    I was involved in the 2nd incarnation of Food after Gordon and Carol. (Sorry about the name – we loved it and just left the sign uip,) We had no idea what the history of the place was when we took over.
    I remember late nights making bread in the back kitchen. Cheese tastings with Giorgio de Luca providing cheese, and Pete from Spring Street Liqours providing wine. We did not serve wholly organic food but tried to use fresh ingredients. Homemade soups and sandwiches on Danny’s special whole wheat health bread every day. I would experiment, make small batches of interesting food. Fun times in a much quieter SoHO. I was a designer, living on Broome, then Greene Street: designed and painted the Whole Food window logo, signs for DeRoma’s, Miso Clothing. At around the same time I created the original illustrations and designs for Apple and Eve Juices.

  24. Frieze Frame: FOOD 1971 | The SoHo Memory Project Says:

    […] year’s Frieze Art Fair New York on Randall’s Island from May 10-13, there will be a FOOD pavilion—not food as in food court, but a “re-enactment” of FOOD Restaurant in […]

  25. MaryJo DiAngelo Says:

    I remember the French waitress at the Broom St. Bar who married the bartender from Brooklyn. They opened the first “fancy” food market in the neighborhood — before Dean and DeLuca, I think. They also opened a restaurant but had to close it because the entrance was too close to the church across the street. I suppose the church has been torn down.

    There was a great family owned Italian restaurant on Prince or Spring near Thompson. I also remember the bodega.

  26. Deborah Says:

    I miss Food in the way soho used to be, I lived there in the 70s and loved eating there, I especially miss the poppyseed cake,to die for! Does anyone have that recipe?

  27. Arnie Says:

    After reading some of these notes I’m feeling all sorts of nostalgic about SOHO and the great eats at FOOD.

    I was an early member of the SOHO Photo Gallery on Spring and West Brdwy so I was there quite allot. I had a studio in Brooklyn and would shlep between the studio (I lived just up the block from the studio) and SOHO. It was a close call if it was for the gallery or FOOD :-). I really didn’t know anybody at FOOD other than to say everyone was really great and with the good food it was the best place in the city as far as I was concerned. Those were the days.

    It was a place for artists to be. SOHO getting all gentrified didn’t make it better.

    • Carol Goodden Says:

      Whoever wrote that nice response about FOOD, it certainly makes my day. Gordon and I created FOOD in the early ’70s, when I was in my early thirties. I am now in my late ’70s and it is thrilling to know that FOOD had such an impact on people. “Best place in the city” is quite a compliment!!

      • Arnie Says:

        Dear Carol;

        It’s not just a compliment, it’s the truth!

        It’s obvious that FOOD was a creation from the heart that touched many people. It was a place to go, have a great and affordable meal, meet nice people and then go about the rest of the day feeling good. You can’t say that about too many places today let me tell ya’. In my thinking that is exactly what a restaurant is supposed to do for those that come in the door.

        You and your partner did brighten up all of SOHO with that place.

        Now that’s a compliment!

        Take care, be well and have fun at whatever you’re goin’, Arnie

  28. Robert Knight Says:

    I fondly remember eating at Food, back in the ’70s and ’80s. First when I was attending art school at Cooper Union and later with my wife. We both loved going there because the food was so fresh, reasonable and delicious. My wife and I , on the spur of the moment would get in our car and come into the City from New Jersey to go there just to have a coffee and dessert because we loved the place so much. I especially loved their corn chowder and their high slice of “Jamaican Mystery Cake”. I remember when it started to change from the “homey” casual feeling to a waitress service with long lines waiting to go in. We always wondered why they close. We still tell people about it to this day.

  29. Laura Phillips Says:

    I worked there briefly in the late 80’s. Quite an experience. Why did it close?

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