Inspired by a deep respect for Old World culinary tradition, but refreshed with a focus on quality, locally curated ingredients, the new KarVér restaurant group will unveil three locations by the late fall of 2017 in Brooklyn and Manhattan. KarVér’s inaugural location will open this August at 1809 Emmons Avenue in Sheepshead Bay, featuring a 4,800 square foot Brasserie and Bakery Café, followed by the 7,000 square foot Chelsea and 2,200 square foot Downtown Brooklyn locations that will open in the fall. The concept looks to further expand its footprint regionally, and nationwide, by 2020.
Devoted to serving quality European-inspired brasserie fare, while sourcing “NYC Loyal” ingredients, KarVér’s culinary team includes KarVér CEO and Culinary Director Lisa Brefere, the “food guru” behind Brooklyn Taste at Barclays Center as well as Executive Chef Rostislav Kemelman, an alumnus of Bolo and The Spotted Pig.
Born from an ideation of the culinary team in an effort to innovate, and localize, the traditional brasserie, KarVér collaborates with local farmers and purveyors to create a fresh spin on classic European dining, with a focus on seasonality and provenance. There is something for everyone at KarVér, with luxe entrées as well as affordable options, such as croque monsieurs starting at $14.
“KarVér will offer a wide variety of delicious and crave-able foods, equally appropriate for a light bite, a weekend brunch or date night dinner, available throughout the day for dine-in, take out, and delivery,” stated Chef Brefere.
The KarVér menu highlights include unique riffs on Salades Niçoise prepared with the choice of lentil and farro, rotisserie chicken, grilled salmon, shrimp, or classic tuna. Spécialités de la Maison include chicken crapaudine, bouillabaisse, pot au feu, salmon choucroute, and “spaghetti” ratatouille. KarVér also offers petite plates like truffled cauliflower cassoulet, broiled escargots, crottin roti, savory tarte tatin, “62˚ egg,“ and “avec frites” dishes such as chicken paillard, pan-roasted mussels, and strip steak frites.
Shared plates include “Pour La Table” charcuterie, cheese and seafood sampling plates as well as tartines du jour, salade verte, and spreads such as chopped chicken liver mousse, fromage fort, and artichoke brandade. Other brasserie signatures include a range of tartines, oeufs, and French onion soup. Desserts include affogato au caramel, crêpes suzette, petits gâteaux, and pot de crème.
Echoing its Europe-meets-local philosophy, a robust beverage program will showcase a selection of Old World and local wines, spirits, and craft beer as well as signature cocktails incorporating fresh, locally sourced ingredients.
The Bakery Café will showcase viennoiseries including pain au raisin and kouign-amann as well as quiche, jambon-beurre baguettes, and cottage jars of fruit, bircher muesli, and yogurt. KarVér’s barista team will steam ristretto and other traditional espresso drinks brewed with Sail Away Coffee as well as offering nitro cold brew and kombucha on tap.
“At KarVér, we are proud to use food and beverages sourced close to home—rather than importing—thereby forging precious partnerships with area farms and purveyors. This very act not only heightens the integrity of the cuisine and overall culinary experience, but also fosters ties with the local communities in which we serve,” added Greg Deligdisch, Chief Marketing Officer of KarVér.
KarVér boasts a wide array of local partnerships with food & beverage purveyors and local farmers such as Liepper and Sons Seafood, Orwasher’s, Amagansett Salt, Sfoglini Pasta, Tin Mustard, Holy Schmitt’s, Brooklyn Brine, Sound, Tilit, Dana’s Bakery, Early Bird Foods, The Jam Stand, Stagg Jam & Marmalade, Tumbador Chocolate, Murray’s Cheese, Ends Meat NYC, Loubaton Imports, and Larchmont Charcuterie. Partners more than suppliers, they will be celebrated both on the menu and on the “Our Purveyors” page on KarVér’s website www.karver.com.
The contemporary, airy décor of each KarVér location will feature Old World accents within a sleek, comfortable atmosphere via Brooklyn-based designer Zaza Djidjavadze. An open action kitchen, the centerpiece of every KarVér Brasserie, will celebrate à la minute cookery. The spaces also feature hand-blown light fixtures, white marble tabletops, custom leather banquettes, pearl granite bar tops, carved wood ornamentation and red oak ceilings. The kitchens include La Marzocco espresso makers, Vulcan ovens and a Rotisol rotisserie.
About Lisa Brefere:
The KarVér senior management team is headed by CEO & Culinary Director Lisa Brefere, a seasoned chef and industry leader who boasts a number of firsts in hospitality—including being one of the first women to graduate from the Culinary Institute of America. A year before graduation she was hired at the Greenwich Country Club and, by the time she graduated, she had been promoted to management level as sous-chef. In 1980, she became the country’s first female executive chef of a country club, at the exclusive Manursing Island Beach & Tennis Club in Rye, New York. She was the first female to graduate the American Culinary Federation National Apprenticeship Program in 1979, the first female executive chef for the Hyatt Hotel Corporation, one of the first women to cook at the esteemed James Beard House, and to compete 2 times in the International Culinary Olympics. For 20 years, she has served on the alumni council of the Culinary Institute of America, which consists of industry leaders from around the country. She was awarded the American Culinary Federation Presidential Medallion for outstanding dedication to the culinary profession.
As an educator, she has co-authored several books, including “So You Want to be A Chef” and its counterpart, “So You Are a Chef,” in their 2nd revision and “Nutrition for Foodservice and Culinary Professionals,” the No.1 rated industry textbook in 9th revision. In 2001, Lisa and her long-time friend and colleague, Brad Barnes (CMC), joined together to found B&B Solutions (now GigaChef Consulting). She is a founder of CookingDistrict, the ultimate online resource for culinary professionals (with over 23,000 members). Lisa was dubbed the “food guru” of the Barclays Center, for which she created its celebrated food program, Brooklyn Taste, featuring 55 Brooklyn-based vendors. She is also part owner of the historic Pythian Market Food Hall in New Orleans, and was the visionary behind Long Island Taste, Nassau Colosseum’s food program.