The food here is bold, the portions are generous, and the prices almost unbelievably reasonable. Owned by the folks who brought us the excellent Chatham Tap(s), there's no doubt that a lot of thought went into the menu and its pricing. Judging from the speed and efficiency with which the food hits the table, I would take a guess that they are going to make up in volume what they might lack in margin. As for the menu itself, it's pretty short, with a handful of appetizers, mostly priced in the $12 range and intended for sharing, and a roughly equal number of main courses, priced somewhat lower (around $8) and better suited for one. I'm never quite sure what to make of photos of food included in a menu, as they all too often remind me of a Chinese take-away, but here they serve to intrigue, rather than discourage.
The third offering from Ed Rudisell, who co-owns Siam Square and Black Market, is a shotgun-style shop offering (on the cheap) several varieties of Bánh mì, Vietnam’s national sandwich. Standouts include The Rook, which plays chicken liver terrine (made to order from Goose the Market) against Vietnamese pork roll. Nothing overpowers; each ingredient — including proteins like ground chicken or beef peanut curry and toppings like pickled Korean radish and carrots — pops up randomly on your tongue like a whack-a-mole. Simple as its menu and mission may be, Rook is just as important to a strong culinary community as once-a-month or -year fine dining experiences.