New Brooklyn Restaurant Offers Yoga, Dinner Under One Roof

By Heather Holland on January 15, 2013 8:41am | Updated on January 15, 2013 4:12pm

COBBLE HILL — Talk about a pre-meal workout.

Brooklyn eatery Take Root has combined its restaurant with a yoga studio — offering a mix of fine dining and meditation all under one roof.

“Taking root is really about filling the body, mind and soul,” said Elise Kornack, who owns the business along with her fiance, Anna Hieronimus.

Before setting up shop in Cobble Hill, Kornack and Hieronimus ran separate businesses out of their home in Park Slope. Hieronimus, 25, was teaching private yoga lessons out of her bedroom, while Hope, 26, was serving food from their backyard.

“We were making most of our living from these dinners, besides what Anna was making doing her yoga,” said Kornack, who worked as sous chef at Aquavit in Midtown Manhattan before she started her own venture. “When we saw it was doing so well, we wanted to have it done more legally.”

Hundreds of dinners later, the couple decided to combine their passions and start a joint business.

Take Root, located at 187 Sackett St., received a beer and wine license in November and opened on New Year’s Day.

"At first I thought, 'No way!' But then...I thought differently," said Susan Weintz, a Boerum Hill resident.

Weintz previously did Pilates a couple of times a week and would gather with friends at a nearby bakery.

"It was a lovely way to begin the day," she said. "So that said, I think it could work if the time slots coincided and the food offerings were healthy."

The restaurant portion of Take Root is visible from the storefront and consists of one long communal table and a separate bar. Walk past the kitchen and customers land in a small studio space in the back.

“We want mothers to be able to treat themselves to a yoga session, and then they can grab a bite or some coffee afterward,” Kornack said.

The restaurant serves lunch at the "noshery," as they call it, and dinner, and also hosts a tasting event, called “Rooted,” twice a week. Priced at $85 per person, the tasting is limited to 10 seats, serves five courses, and those who participate are seated at one long table together.

The ever-changing menu, which may include mushroom tortellini and pickled popcorn, is market-driven with influences from Kornack's Sicilian background. A sample on the eatery's website included warm marinated olives, squash ravioli and beef tongue pastrami on the dinner menu.

“It evokes the nostalgic feeling of being around the table,” Kornack said. “We want to encourage intimacy and a small group dynamic that’s been lost in New York City.”

Like the restaurant, the yoga studio is intimate — only large enough to fit six to seven people comfortably, Hieronimus said.

It offers drop-in classes throughout the day, including adult and childrens' classes, and a class for kids as young as 2-years-old.

“We offer a safe space to practice yoga without so many bodies in the room,” Hieronimus said. “Teachers can only be present to so many students at one time. Here, they can get more one-on-one attention.”

On Jan. 28, the studio will be offering a meditation workshop dedicated to celebrating the full moon. Depending on the interest, Hieronimus hopes to offer the workshop at every full moon, she said.

"I'm not trying to compete with large scale studios," Hieronimus said."This is something that parents can set aside and look forward to doing during the week."

For a full menu and yoga schedule, visit take-root.com.

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