INSA

Korean BBQ & Karaoke

Credit: Craig LaCourt

Credit: Craig LaCourt

Sohui Kim: Chef & Partner

Sohui was born in Seoul, Korea and lived there until the age of ten, as part of a household where food and entertaining were a regular event. In 1981, her family immigrated to the United States and settled in the Bronx. After acquiring a Bachelor of Arts degree from Barnard College, she was hunting for life’s meaning and discovered her quest for passion. And it was in cooking.

After graduating from the Peter Kump School of Cooking, she started her career with an externship at Blue Hill under chefs Dan Barber and Michael Anthony, who then invited her to join them as they opened Blue Hill Stone Barns. Not wanting to move to Westchester, she went to work for Anita Lo at the celebrated restaurant Annisa in the West Village, quickly rising through the ranks. After Annisa, she did stints working for the Batali/Bastianich group under chef Anne Burrell, recipe testing for Cesare Casella, and as a private chef making French and Japanese food at the high-end Sony Club. In 2005, she was convinced by her husband Ben Schneider to go forth on her own, and together they opened The Good Fork in Red Hook, Brooklyn. Nearly a decade later, Sohui’s highly personal, totally accessible style of cooking has ensured that The Good Fork remains both a beloved neighborhood eatery and a destination restaurant.

Credit: Craig LaCourt

Credit: Craig LaCourt

Ben Schneider: Contractor & Partner

Ben is a native New Yorker who grew up on the Upper West Side during the 70’s and 80’s, spent several years in between as a child in Sicily with his parents, who were anthropologists (and Italian food experts) studying Sicilian culture. After attending the University of Michigan, he spent a decade in Chicago working as an actor and a cabinetmaker. In 2001, he moved back to New York and met Sohui Kim when she attended a show he was in with Okwui, her best friend from the Bronx. After impressing her sufficiently with his mother’s recipe for osso buco, she agreed to marry him and they moved to Red Hook. In 2005, he put his carpentry skills to good use by building The Good Fork, the restaurant he and Sohui now run together. Since then, he has also learned how to create a beverage program, pair wine, make espresso, manage the front of the house and wait tables, something he surprisingly never did throughout his 30 years of acting experience.

Credit: Craig LaCourt

Credit: Craig LaCourt

Michael Stokes: Chef de Cuisine

Michael Stokes was born on Long Island, of Korean American descent. He has spent over a quarter century involved in highly lauded food establishments in NYC and East Hampton NY. His past involvements have included Keen's Chophouse, Rene Pujol, Prune, Babette's, The Laundry, & Barefoot Contessa. He is one of the authors of the Mile End Cookbook. He had always been fascinated with the incredible range of differences in approach and technique that various cultures apply to their cuisine and spends his days off searching for every ethnic enclave in New York to explore and taste.

Credit: Craig LaCourt

Credit: Craig LaCourt

Yong shin: sous chef & partner

Yong is Korean born and raised in Dubai, U.A.E. He was fortunate to grow up in a family of foodies with an excellent cook for a mother. Art school brought him to New York but shortly after graduation, he stumbled into the kitchen in a serendipitous manner. Under the guidance of chef Sohui Kim, Yong learned the basics of cooking in a professional kitchen at The Good Fork. Whilst working, he also attended the French Culinary Institute and graduated with honors. After two years, Yong started cooking at Franny's, where he learned the importance of seasonal cooking with high quality ingredients, utilizing a wood fired oven and where he fell in love with the practice of fermentation. Before the opportunity arose to open Insa, Yong was a private chef, spent time hosting pop-ups with friends and assisting in various kitchens throughout Brooklyn. As he started developing a deeper love and respect for Korean cuisine, history and culture, Yong has been constantly digging into his roots and memories while visiting Korea for inspiration.

Credit: Craig LaCourt

Credit: Craig LaCourt

Jamie seet: general manager

Jamie Seet cut her teeth in the restaurant business starting out as an oyster shucker at The Spotted Pig. Through years of hard work and determination she worked her way up to become the general manager. Eventually the owners of The Spotted Pig asked her to open their first restaurant outside of NYC, called Tosca Café, located in San Francisco. After opening Tosca, she spent 7 months traveling & eating. Jamie came back to NYC and found her way into the world of Korean BBQ & karaoke. Her favorite karaoke song is Grace Jones' “Pull Up To The Bumper.”