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For a Pop-Up Sandwich Shop That Pays Homage to My Favorite Movie: “2Yutes”

In 1992 My Cousin Vinny was released. I remember watching it at home for the very first time. The acting, writing, everything is all incredible. I know that because I can watch it over and over again and still laugh out loud without missing a beat. It is one of my all time favorite movies and I am a tough customer.

The title of location where I had my latest meal comes directly from my favorite movie. I am not going to lie that was definitely apart of why I wanted to go. They had my full attention.

For those still in the dark, this clip will explain to you what a “yute” is. Please watch until the end.

As a fellow Brooklynite I don’t believe I have ever used this term but I did understand what he meant when I saw the film. This movie MAY have exaggerated our Brooklyn accents, love of Chinese food, and flare with fashion, but I think it was “dead on balls” accurate. It’s the little things that make us all unique.

So when I came across an article on Brooklyn Based’s website advertising a sandwich shop called 2Yutes I couldn’t resist. Since 2Yutes is located in Brooklyn as well I think it is a perfect title for a restaurant.

2Yutes is currently a pop up shop without a permanent location. For the time being it is sharing kitchen space with Michael and Ping’s Chinese restaurant, coincidentally right next door to a pie shop I adore. You might have heard of it, Four and Twenty Blackbirds? In case you haven’t here is all you need to know (

Michael Bruno is the man behind 2Yutes who opened Michael & Ping’s Modern Chinese Take-Out in Gowanus six years ago. Mr. Bruno is an Italian-American who grew up in Brooklyn and 2Yutes is a venture much closer to his upbringing as opposed to his Chinese food eatery that makes classic dishes with local ingredients.

Mr. Bruno said about 2Yutes: “It’s all what I grew up eating in Bensonhurst–at places like John’s Deli and Lioni’s. There’s no great sandwich shop in this neighborhood, so I decided to give it a try.”

At 2 Yutes (an earlier partner left, so it’s just this one yute running things now), “Bruno brings in fresh mozzarella and other cheeses from Lioni’s in Bensonhurst, plus ciabatta from Mazzola Bakery in Carroll Gardens.”

He continued: “I’m in my 30s now, so I was looking to use these great ingredients but in something a little lighter, not 80% bread, and not quite so filling like some of these deli sandwiches.”

I choice the rice balls for my appetizer. I am obsessed with rice balls and have eaten them any time I am eating from a restaurant that makes them. Therefore I have had my fare share and probably yours too. When I read about this place the rice balls were described as an old family recipe to which no outsiders know the secret ingredients. “Growing up, my friends would always go crazy for these, so I told my mom we had to have them here”. That made them even more tempting.

The three rice balls and marinara sauce placed before me looked delicious. I wasted no time cutting into them. I was immediately overpowered by the taste of pepper. After several more bites it tasted like red pepper flakes were ingrained into them. It was way too much for me. I continued on eating them because I enjoyed the texture and crunch, but the pepper was the only real flavor I tasted. There seemingly no cheese, which astounded me because that is typically in the middle.

For an entrée I choice the classic panini with fresh mozzarella, tomato, argula, and a balsamic vinegar dressing. The bread was crunchy and probably grilled. Some places like to use the word panini but serve a plain hero bread that is at room temperature. A panini is a grilled sandwich that is warm when served. We were off to a good start.

The way I figure it you can’t go wrong with fresh mozzarella. I think it is good as a meal by itself but with tomatoes and argula goes well too. I liked this choice right away. I ended up taking half home because I was too full. It is my favorite kind of problem. Just so you know I reheated it today and it was still as delicious as it was the first time.

Since there are two restaurants (maybe this could be the new meaning behind “2” Yutes now) operating out of one location both kinds of food are constantly being made. Therefore if you are in the mood for Chinese (another My Cousin Vinny quality) or your cohort is, as mine was, you are in luck. The food looked good and apparently was delicious. You could tell the difference between these dishes and those traditionally found at a standard Chinese restaurant.

It appears my first experience at a pop up shop was a swinging success. I hope 2Yutes is around for the long haul and can expand its menu. I would be curious to see what that would include.

I hope this 1Yute can maintain his winning restaurant streak.

After all if “can’t win a case by yourself, your fucking useless”.

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