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Chop shop! A Bushwick barber is opening a restaurant

Barber chop: Bushwick barber June Ramirez will kick off his first culinary venture with Salud Bar and Grill in October.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

Call it barber-cue!

A Bushwick barber plans to show he really knows how to carve a mutton chop when he opens a new restaurant on Bushwick Avenue. The longtime hairdresser doesn’t have a lot of experience as a restaurateur, but says he cut his teeth as a hospitable host during his time in the scissor biz.

“I like dealing with people and I’ve been doing it a lot of years in the barber industry,” said June Ramirez, who has helmed Metro Barber Shop on Wilson Avenue since 2003 and hopes to open Salud Bar and Grill at the corner of Moffat Street in mid-October — though neither the state nor the local community board has okayed his liquor license yet.

The coiffeur says he gained his passion for food — and firsthand culinary experience — while working alongside his mother in an Ecuadorian kitchen.

But Ramirez won’t be manning the titular grill at his new venture — he will continue to chop locks at the barber shop and has recruited Four Seasons chef Rafael David Espaillat to hone the menu and oversee the enterprise’s first month while training a permanent head chef.

The bill of fare is still in the works, but Ramirez said it will feature a multicultural melange of flavors, including Jamaican jerk chicken, Dominican-inspired burgers, and Asian rice-noodle salad.

The kitchen will also mix up an array of house-made hot sauces — Salud will offer two on opening day, and eventually spoon out five to glob onto the globe-trotting menu, he said.

“Our menu is going to be very diversified,” said Ramirez.

The site of the forthcoming meat-ery — which Ramirez has furnished with wood from demolished pre-war homes in Bushwick, Bedford-Stuyvesant, and East New York — is on a quiet stretch of Bushwick Avenue without much of a restaurant scene to speak of, but the mop-cropper said he is hoping to change that.

“I thought it was a key location, and the area needs it because there aren’t restaurants around the area on Bushwick Avenue,” he said. “I wanted to make it better for the community and everybody.”

Salud Bar and Grill (1413 Bushwick Ave. at Moffat Street in Bushwick). Slated to open in October.

Reach reporter Allegra Hobbs at ahobbs@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–8312.

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