The last time we checked in with Williamsburg’s good old Hoxton hotel (est. 2018), chef Michael Solomonov’s K’Far was gathering four stars as the even better follow-up to his Laser Wolf, which itself was one of the best new restaurants of 2022. The former’s on the lobby level, the latter’s on the 10th floor and both are Philadelphia imports. This week, Solomonov aims to complete the constellation with a sparkler that’s unique to NYC.
Jaffa Cocktail and Raw Bar is poised to open on the hotel’s second-story mezzanine on Thursday, May 18. This latest space has room for more than 100 inside and out, each area abloom with greenery and intending to recall the aesthetic and culinary appeal of the Israeli port city for which it’s named. The seafood-forward menu, for example, includes items like oysters with schug and passion fruit mignonette, shrimp cocktail and octopus shakshuka.
Drinks, too, incorporate one export for which the area is famed. The Jaffa Orange frozen is made with that titular citrus, plus vodka, Aperol and vanilla. The Rabbi Gary also mixes that fruit with Campari, and the Fizzy Bubbelech adds effervescence with soda and introduces tequila and a Forthave aperitivo to the blend, which is also available by the pitcher.
Boxes of wine—1-liter rectangles of Italy’s organic Fuoristrada—are another unique large-format option, available in red, white or rosé for $48.
“We wanted the cocktails and the offerings to be playful,” says beverage director Ashley Santoro. “We kind of joke that these are adult juice boxes. I haven’t seen another restaurant offer them, so I think we might be one of the first.”
Santoro also cites boxed wine, and Fuoristrada in particular’s improved sustainability, production practices and quality as primary reasons she included it on Jaffa’s drink list, in addition to increasing consumer trust of the evolved, but previously-maligned product. Moreover, it's relatively novel for this setting.
“I think that it will be a very Instagrammable moment,” Santoro says. “But, overall, I hope it changes people’s perspective on alternative packaging, to have something that’s delicious in a box and easy to travel,” she says.
Plus, “it’s just fun,” she says
Jaffa Cocktail and Raw Bar is located on the second floor of the Hoxton Hotel at 97 Wythe Avenue. It will be open Wednesday-Friday from 4pm-12am and Saturday-Sunday from 12pm-12am beginning Thursday, May 18.