The Kitting Factory is on its way to becoming a restaurant-venue hybrid a la Baby’s All Right, as it gets ready to open an adjacent eatery in early May.
“Over the years I’ve lost track of the number of people who asked if we have food,” said Bob Reiter, the Knit’s GM, who lives with his wife directly above the bar.
The Williamsburg location of The Federal Bar will remedy that, with a menu similar to the ones at its two California locations, though with more of emphasis on local ingredients. The West Coast offerings, as you can see below, include the Federal Dog, an all-beef hot dog topped with shallot rings, pickled jalapenos and mustard, and IPA-braised short ribs served with melted leeks and “hulk” smashed potatoes. Last week, Community Board 1 endorsed a liquor license that, once approved by the SLA, will allow for a variety of whiskeys, a dozen regularly rotating craft beers on tap, and small-batch wines.
The space that formerly belonged to Qoo Robata Bar, at 367 Metropolitan, is currently undergoing cosmetic renovations for what Reiter hopes will be “a fairly quick turnaround.” A press release states that the décor will have an “antique bank” theme, with a bank of mini-vaults, chrome security deposit boxes and reclaimed wood flooring.
The original Knitting Factory was founded in 1987 at what was a dilapidated Avon Products office on Houston Street between the Bowery and Broadway. In the mid-’90s the venue relocated to TriBeCa, and 14 years after that it settled into its current home. The company now owns four Knitting Factory music venues across the country.