A chalkboard on the wall behind the ordering counter announces the choices at Fort Reno Provisions, a new barbecue joint opening soon in Park Slope from the owner of nearby Palo Santo. Depending on what's in the smoker, that's going to be whole hog pulled pork, briskets, or ribs, as well as other smoked pork specialties. Most of the pigs will come from Heritage Foods, which acts a broker between small farms and restaurants. One of the animals owner Jacques Gautier is excited about serving up is the razorback, a cross between a wild boar and a pig. It happens, "when a boar breaks into a pen and steals some women," he jokes, "It's got the gaminess of a boar, with leaner, full flavor, but then it has the fattiness and tenderness of the pig. It's the perfect mix."
Prices will be by the pound and will be comparable to the going city rate (see Fette Sau, Hill Country) and paired with simple sides like collard greens, biscuits, cole slaw or macaroni and cheese. Just like at the Latin Palo Santo across the street, the menu features the super-local and sustainably-grown ingredients prepared simply.
The 20-seater counter-service nook is decorated in architectural salvage to create a relaxed vibe. Seating is communal at a series of two tops, but the prime spot is the 6-person table tucked around the back left of the bar. That bar, of course, offers well-made cocktails, a notable addition as 4th Avenue stretch transforms from a wide lane of auto-body repair shops to a boulevard with new bars, cafes and condos.
Fort Reno has the potential to be the leading outpost of what could be a new BBQ row at the corner of 4th and Union. A block away a several hundred seater Dinosaur Bar-B-Que has applied for a liquor license. And just on the other side of the wall from Fort Reno, Wild Whiskey Warthog is trying to get in their own whiskey and BBQ joint. Chances are the area can support all three.
Fort Reno Provisions
669 Union Street, Park Slope