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Star Chef Mike Solomonov Is Opening Three New Restaurants in Philly

Zahav’s Solomonov and Steve Cook are expanding their restaurant empire with new Israeli eateries, each with a very different menu

K’Far in Rittenhouse is one of three new projects in the works from Michael Solomonov and Steve Cook
Pearl Properties/CookNSolo

Mike Solomonov and Steve Cook, the star duo behind some of Philly’s most popular restaurants, including Zahav, are opening three new Israeli eateries, each serving something different. Two will be led by Zahav chefs.

Along with the nationally acclaimed Zahav, Solomonov and Cook have Goldie, Dizengoff, The Rooster, and Abe Fisher, and are part of the team behind the Philly-favorite fried chicken and doughnut chain Federal Donuts.

Coming up next is K’Far, an Israeli bakery and cafe with Camille Cogswell at the helm — she’s the James Beard Award-winning pastry chef at Zahav. K’Far is going into the Harper, a new apartment building at 19th and Chestnut in Rittenhouse.

Look for sweet and savory baked goods during the day and a dinner menu that shows “another facet of Israeli cuisine,” Solomonov said when details of K’Far, which means “village,” were first revealed. “[W]e’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.”

According to Philly.com, that one is slated to open early July.

A few months later, Solomonov and Cook head to the other side of Broad, to the 1200 block of Sansom Street in the glass-enclosed annex of a new high-rise next to Fergie’s Pub (the building stretches from Walnut to Sansom). Word on the street originally had that this space would be the bakery, but when announcing K’Far Solomonov quelled that rumor. Instead, Philly.com reports it will be a sandwich shop called Merkaz, which means “center,” opening around September.

Mike Solomonov, Camille Cogswells, and Steve Cook of Zahav and K’Far
Alexandra Hawkins

The third restaurant on the horizon takes the team to Kensington for Laser Wolf. Zahav’s chef de cuisine, Andrew Henshaw, will run the kitchen there, Philly.com reports. The restaurant, at 1301 N. Howard Street, will be similar to Zahav, where much of the menu is centered around a grill.

Solomonov and Cook had expanded into New York City and Miami with outposts of Dizengoff and Federal Donuts, but those locations are now closed.

K'Far Cafe

110 South 19th Street, , PA 19103 (267) 800-7200 Visit Website

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