Mike Solomonov and Steve Cook are opening an Israeli bakery and cafe in the Harper, the luxe new apartment building going up at 19th and Chestnut. The restaurant, K’Far, will bring 2018 James Beard Award winner Camille Cogswell over from Zahav. It opens in June.
Kfar is the Hebrew word for village.
“The first job I ever had in a kitchen was scrubbing sheet trays in a bakery in Israel, in a town called Kfar Saba,” Solomonov said during a tour of the property. “We’re going to feature pastries and baked goods by the world-famous Camille Cogswell, and we’ll be featuring iconic dishes that I grew up with, that to me tell the story of Israeli cuisine, probably better than what everyone thinks — not falafel and shawarma and hummus.”
K’Far, at 110 S. 19th Street, will be an all-day restaurant, with coffee from Ox and sweet and savory baked goods during the day, like rugelach and burekas. Cogswell’s burekas are almost as good his grandmother’s, Solomonov jokes. The dinner menu will be from another Zahav chef — they’re holding off on revealing who is heading to K’Far just yet. “We’re going to be doing really smart — a little bit more sophisticated — cooking. We’re going to be showing another facet of Israeli cuisine,” Solomonov says of the dinner service.
The dinner menu will make good use of the restaurant’s hearth oven, and be designed with the option of stopping in for a glass of wine and small plates, as opposed to Zahav’s more formal setup, Solomonov says — “It’s going to be sick,” he promises.
James Beard Award winners Solomonov and Cook, who also have Abe Fisher, Dizengoff, the Rooster, Goldie, and Federal Donuts, are again partnering with Pearl Properties, the developer behind the Harper. The building is 25 stories, with an underground garage.
K’Far, which will be on street level and accessed through the lobby, is about 2,000 square feet. Look for outdoor seating on a patio tucked in next to the building.
As for the rumors Solomonov and Cook were opening an Israeli bakery at 12th and Sansom next to Fergie’s Pub: They’re are still planning something for that property, but it’s definitely not going to be a bakery.
They’re heading to Israel next week, with Cogswell and Goldie’s Caitlin McMillan. Cogswell says it’s her first time visiting the country, and she can’t wait to try all the foods she’s spent three years making at Zahav.
Take a look at the renderings for an idea of what K’Far will look like when construction is complete:
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