(Photo: Daniel Krieger)

(Photo: Daniel Krieger)

Ok, we admit we had to resort to googling to figure out what Acadian cooking is– turns out that, like the people it was created by, it’s proto-Cajun. The menu at King Bee, which opens tonight on East Ninth Street, where Exchange Alley once lived, is inspired by this Canadian Acadian cuisine, or what Cajuns ate before they were kicked out of Canada by the British.

The chefs have clearly maintained some of the rustic, peasant food aspects of Acadian fare and interpret that whole peasant thing literally by sourcing produce from Klemm’s family farm upstate and the restaurant’s own garden located in the back. We suggest you show off your freak side by showing up with mini-shovel in hand and offering to uproot your own rutabaga in the back.

But please don’t take this too far and loudly announce your concern that the soil in East Village doesn’t at all resemble that of New Brunswick, because after all King Bee is only inspired by this cuisine and this is a restaurant not a hovel somewhere in Canada.

The two guys behind the restaurant are Ken Jackson, founding partner of Herbsaint in New Orleans, and Eben Klemm, at MIT turned cocktail master– which definitely explains the seriously daring cocktail menu happening here. One cocktail named after the original flyer boy, the Dan Smith Will Play You Guitar, contains something else we had to google: quinquina (a variety of apéritif wine). But if that New York Times Magazine pic of King Bee’s poutine râpée looked super fancy, chill, because the food is decently priced.

(Photo: Daniel Krieger)

(Photo: Daniel Krieger)

(Photo: Daniel Krieger)

(Photo: Daniel Krieger)

Check out the menu and price points below:

Hors D’oeuvres

– Pork cracklings with peanut, cane caramel, and malt vinegar powder – $6

– Rabbit rillette with crispy leeks – $7

– Caraway ployes with smoked trout roe and maple cream – $8

– Grilled oysters with cabbage garlic butter – $12

– Louisiana Crawfish & brioche with Tasso and radish – $7

Oysters ($3 each)

– St. Simeon (PEI)

– Glidden Point (Damariscotta, Maine)

– Brian Patch Bluepoints (Long Island)

Charcuterie ($6 each)

– Rice’s country ham with pickled autumn squash and mustard Crème Fraîche


– Farro salad with Mirliton, garden lettuces, almonds, and buttermilk

vinaigrette – $12

– Upstate farm raw salad with cauliflower, kale, turnip, romaine and Sorghum vinaigrette – $10

– Gulf Shrimp barbecue with potato salad – $14

– Fish & Chips with Cod tongue, Espelette, Remoulade – $12

– Tartare with Venison loin and Pâté, barley, and Banyuls sauce – $14

– Gumbo z’Herbes with brown jasmine rice – $12


– Buckwheat Pappardelle with wild mushrooms, Jerusalem artichoke, and soft poached egg – $16

– Pan seared rabbit and Peameal, rutabaga puree, beets, and kasha – $24

– Duck Fricot with carrots, Swiss chard, dumplings – $26

– Roasted cod with cockles, mussels, kale, and Andouille sausage – $23

– Ribeye with beef vintaigrette and fried garlic potatoes $32

– Cornell chicken with beans and pea shoots- $19

– Poutine Râpée with lamb neck, turnips, and partridge berries $22

Cocktails ($11)

– Great Ray- a madiera milk punk with bitter chocolate and honey

– Dan Smith Will Teach You Guitar – with quinquina and plumb shrub

– B Side Wins Again – with sherry, salt, caramel

– Sunset Cox- with sparkling Bugey Cerdo and fresh blackberries

– Llewelyn’s Door- with Pineau de Charentes, Hazelnut Orgeat, and stout

– Ford to City- with Vermouth, maple grapefruit saccharum


King Bee, 424 E 9th St., bet. First Ave. and Avenue A, East Village; (646) 755-8088