It's very difficult to predict the half-life of a tunnel restaurant. In a certain respect, it's the perfect arrangement. Fixed hours, captive audiences, little competition. I have no doubt the rents are high, though, the restrictions many, and the notion of "little competition" is a rather assumptive assumption, based around the general lack of quality food to be had underground. So, I guess, it's also a very dicey proposition.
Photos by Nicholas L. Hall Likely the only time I've found myself wishing for a third ball (cue groans).
Still, I'm convinced that if you can find your niche down there, you can have a real shot. Although there are certainly many things stacked against you, it's hard to get away from the allure of that captive audience. There's a reason so many subpar restaurants thrive in the circuitous rabbit-run under downtown, after all, even while charging excessive prices for their mediocre fare. When places down there do it right, even if the prices are a little steeper than maybe they should be, I think they stand an even better chance. Anything to save us from the never-ending feedback loop of chicken salad --> submarine -->crappy burger --> taco salad (repeat).
That brings us to Brooklyn Meatball Co. Apparently, it used to be called Saucy Balls, and is the brain child of erstwhile reality TV personality Joseph Galluzzi. I don't really care that he was on TV, or if he wants to have an entendre entrée. I just want it to taste good. It does. For $5.40 after tax, though, I'd have liked more balls.