FORT GREENE — Mr. Coco’s grocery store, run by the same family behind the Mr. Kiwi in Bushwick, is about to welcome a new member of the fruit store family: Mr. Melon, which is expected to open in July.
Replacing Adama’s African and American Cuisine at 975 Fulton St., Mr. Melon is the latest in the growing chain of family-run shops.
Three South Korean brothers moved to Brooklyn 10 years ago. After a few years of working in grocery stores, the eldest brother June Yoon opened his first shop named Mr. Kiwi on Broadway in Bushwick in 2006.
Next came Mr. Coco’s in Fort Greene, then Mr. Piña in Williamsburg and coming soon, the second Fort Greene location, Mr. Melon.
Youngest brother Jack moved to Brooklyn three years ago to join his brothers and now manages Mr. Coco’s. "We’re very excited to open the new store," he said. "Business is going well."
Mr. Coco’s on Myrtle Avenue is open 24 hours a day and rarely has a moment without customers. Somewhat of a local sweetheart, the shop specializes in affordable organic produce, meatless options, and very friendly service, locals say.
"It’s a great place for vegetarians," said Jeremy Butman who is not a vegetarian himself. "But I come here for the good cheap produce selection and their great beer selection." Butman moved into the neighborhood a year ago and has come to Mr. Coco’s at least twice a week ever since.
Over on Fulton Street, the second-oldest brother, June Ha, was overseeing signage placement for the new store Tuesday morning. Inside the empty shop construction workers affixed wooden shelving and sanded new countertops.
Half a block down the street, fruit stand owner Faru Quee Mohammad watched the scene. He has been selling fruit on the corner of Fulton Street and Washington Avenue for over three years.
"I’m not worried about Mr. Melon," he said. "My business is fine."
He added that these days businesses come and go, but if you’re good you stay.
And Fort Greene locals hope Mr. Coco’s and his fruit offspring locations are here to stay.
"I go to Mr. Coco’s all the time," said E. Cunningham, 73, who declined to give her full first name. "I am so glad they came to the neighborhood."