By Lisa Loverro
Recently opened this past October, King Bee serves up a large dose of Southern flare with a twist. Drawing inspiration from the Arcadian cuisine, which dates back to the 17th century when French colonist migrated down from Arcadia to Louisiana, King Bee pays homage to the Cajun culture developed by the Arcadians, which most of us here in the United States have associated with all things delicious. The restaurant is a collaboration between three influencers in the culinary world; Chef Jeremie Tomczak who began his career at Laurent Tourendel’s Cello, Ken Jackson who was a founding partner and Beverage Director at the fine dining restaurant Herbsaint, in New Orleans and Eben Klemm, the beverage brains behind a range of cocktail programs such as Pearl & Ash and Ginny’s Supper Club. Together the three have hit a home run with King Bee which occupies the old Exchange Alley space on East 9th street.
The menu changes seasonally and offers a contemporary interpretation connecting the lineage of Louisiana country cooking to its predecessors in the Canadian Maritimes and France. The plates are designed to take age-old dishes, classics really, and infuse them with a modern twist to satisfy today’s palate. For instance, the Salt Pork Confit Lobster is paired with Grits; the Poutine Rapee with Lamb Necks, Turnips and Partridgeberry preserves offers both sweet and savory.
The 60-seat restaurant is designed to resemble a modern farmhouse giving the guests a feeling of the country in the hectic city, complete with a view of the restaurant’s backyard garden. In a city where Cajun cuisine is somewhat commonplace, King Bee offers an unexpected twist and while this restaurant may not appeal to everyone, it certainly fits the bill to satisfy even the most finicky of foodies and anyone looking for a unique dining experience in New York City.
424 East 9th St,
New York, NY 10009