For famished customers in Red Hook, General Ock hits the spot.
That’s the militaristic moniker of Rahim Mohamed, a 32-year-old bodega manager who has become TikTok famous for whipping up wild sandwiches inside Red Hook Food Corp at 603 Clinton St.
With a can-do attitude of “you want it, I’ll make it,” Mohamed (known on TikTok as @rah_money1) piles unusual items — Pop-Tarts, mozzarella sticks, cotton candy, Rice Krispies Treats — into hot sandwiches. His method has been dubbed the “Ocky Way,” and he’s amassed 2.4 million followers on the social media platform.
“For years, I [saw] people get the same sandwiches and order all of these things on the side. I thought, ‘Why can’t I mix it all together?’ ” the Canarsie-based father of four told The Post.
Mohamed’s nickname, General Ock, comes from Americanized Arabic slang for “akhi,” meaning “brother” in his native country of Yemen, where he emigrated from in 1999. In 2007, he took over the running of his family’s bodega and eventually started whipping up crazy sandwiches. In June 2020, after a gentle push from various family members and customers, Mohamed shared his wild menu items online.
“Honestly, I’m not really a social media person,” he said from the back corner of his humble, three-aisle bodega, which is situated amongst auto-body shops and the Gowanus Expressway. But “all you see on TikTok are dances and dumb things, so I saw an opportunity.”
Thanks to the viral videos, customers new and old have embraced the Ocky Way, posting challenging and oddball orders. Some go as far as to just grab items off the bodega’s shelves and ask that they be incorporated into sandwiches.
“I ask them what they want in it and how they feel about certain flavors and if they have allergies, then I go to work and surprise them with something new each time,” he told The Post. “That’s the ‘Ocky Way.’ It’s an art.”
One asked for a bacon, egg and cheese between two danishes with cotton candy worked in; another called for the classic breakfast sandwich with gummy worms.
On a given weekend, Mohamed will make about 100 sandwiches the Ocky Way, and his bodega has even become a tourist attraction. Earlier this week, a family visiting from San Francisco popped in to try a breakfast of bacon, egg and cheese mixed with “chopped cheese” (diced meat and cheese), mozzarella sticks, spinach and tomato.
“My daughter found him on TikTok and said we had to go while we’re in New York,” California mother Iesha Lee told The Post. “He was so friendly, and the sandwich is amazing. I’d give it a 10.”
Although each Ocky Way nosh is customized per order, Mohamed has a few base items to go off, such as a $15 steak grilled cheese with bacon and mozzarella sticks; a $12 chopped cheese with mozzarella sticks, fries or hash browns sandwiched between Jamaican pastries (known as beef patties); and a $15 to $25 jumbo bacon, egg and cheese with hash browns that’s served on a large circular waffle.
Mohamed’s latest (and arguably greatest) Ocky item is “The New York Post,” a tower of pastrami, grilled chicken, mozzarella sticks, Swiss cheese, spinach, tomatoes and sweet peppers sandwiched between beef patties. At $15, it’s a hearty bargain.
The internet celebrity hopes to eventually open a Manhattan storefront. Until then, fans will have to trek to Red Hook to buy his sandwiches and the Ocky Way apparel items he recently started selling. The bodega also stocks antacid, but Mohamed insists it isn’t necessary with his creations.
“Nah. You’ll never need any Pepto for the Ocky Way,” he says. “I got you!”