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Gowanus Korean BBQ Karaoke Joint to Open Next Week

By Leslie Albrecht | December 8, 2015 4:14pm
 Insa, at 328 Douglass St., will have tables with built-in grills and private karaoke rooms.
Gowanus Korean BBQ Karaoke Joint to Open Dec. 15
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GOWANUS — Mark your calendars for bibimbap with a side of singing.

The long-awaited combination Korean barbecue and karaoke lounge from the owners of Red Hook's Good Fork will open Dec. 15, the owners announced Tuesday.

Insa, at 328 Douglass St. (between Third and Fourth avenues), will have tables with built-in grills and private karaoke rooms, each with its own theme. Some will even have fans to give singers that wind-swept Stevie Nicks look.

Chef Sohui Kim and her husband, designer Ben Schneider, cooked up the idea for the 100-seat restaurant because they were tired of driving to Queens for an authentic taste of Kim's homeland, Schneider told DNAinfo New York in 2014.

The duo like to call their new venture the "Korean Fun Time Place for Celebration" and it will feature a 36-seat bar with a separate entrance that will serve "Korean-Tiki" cocktails, according to Tuesday's announcement.

The menu will be "very authentic Korean BBQ, but with more variety and seasonality, and sourced from sustainable and humane purveyors," the owners said.

Insa will have five karaoke rooms in the back of the restaurant “designed to be used after drinking or dining,” according to Tuesday’s announcement. All have themes:  psychedelic, jungle, deep sea, and space. Four of the rooms hold 12 people each and one “party room” holds 22 people.

Insa will have a strict no tipping policy but diners will pay a 20 percent "administration fee" instead.

"Chef Kim and team were motivated by the disparity in wages between front and back of house, as well as the desire to keep their best cooks with them," the owners said. "Providing a decent living wage plus overtime, with merit based raises, paid vacation time and eventually affordable health insurance is all a part of The Good Fork and Insa ethic."