Beloved New Haven watering hole Anchor Bar closed in January 2015, but has found new life, thanks to a New York restaurateur and Yale alumnus.
Karl Franz Williams, a 1997 graduate of the university, has officially reopened the College Street institution as Anchor Spa, offering globally-inspired cocktails and small plates. Anchor Spa is his third mixology-driven concept, following Harlem's 67 Orange Street and Solomon & Kuff.
The 60-seat New Haven space, designed by architect Deverell Smith, "preserves the vibe and authenticity of the original Anchor with slight updates," according to a news release.
Williams has partnered with Dimitrios Zahariadis to create eclectic libations and curate "cocktail experiences based on old trade routes and those of noteworthy sea-faring individuals," according to the release. A sample menu lists seven drinks (all $13) influenced by Greece, China, England, Brazil, New Orleans and New Haven - like the "Yale Beets Harvard," with brown buttered Plantation 3 Star rum, beets, orange acid and molasses.
Small plates ($8 to $16) are divided into "eastern hemisphere" and "western hemisphere" categories, with options like grilled octopus, Asian-spiced duck breast, fish and chips, Brazilian jerked beef, cioppino, braised bison tacos and beignets with white chocolate and blueberry sauce.
Anchor Spa, 272 College St., New Haven, is open Sunday through Thursday, 5 p.m. to 1 a.m., and Friday and Saturday from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. 203-821-7065. anchorbarnh.com.