He’s won Grammy’s and fame and recently separated from supermodel wife Heidi Klum, but this past Yom Kippur the singer Seal experienced an unexpected moment of misfortune: he couldn’t get reservations to the hot new Soho restaurant, Jezebel; this because the celebrated recording artist hadn’t taken into account that the strictly kosher restaurant was closed for the holiday. Co-owner Henry Stimler told The Algemeiner in an email that he turned his cell phone on after the festival and discovered a slew of messages from a concierge representing Seal.
“It’s a concierge service for celebs (mostly rappers, hip hop artists and sports stars). The president is a friend of mine, he was texting me and then he texted a non-Jewish [girlfriend] that we have in common and she explained it’s Yom Kippur, hence my phone is off and the restaurant wasn’t answering.” Once this was established, the concierge rang leaving a message that Stimler says was to the effect of, “It’s all OK, Seal wanted to come with a bunch of friends to Jezebel. He was in the city for two nights or so, they didn’t factor in the holiday, and he has flown out, but next time he will come.”
Fortunately for Jezebel they’ve had no problem attracting the rich and famous since opening in July, a necessary component of any restaurant’s publicity strategy in the over-crowded New York dining scene. With food menu items such as Braised Lamb Agnolotti with marjoram, baby tomatoes and grated almond and cocktails as sophisticated as the “Jezebel’s Kiss” which contains saffron infused Cazadores tequila, blood orange, black grapes and lavender bitters, it might not matter anyway. “We do get a lot of celebrities, thankfully, across the whole range, from Rangers players, actresses, politicians, ambassadors, senators, powerful NY players and of course chief rabbis such as Rabbi Yona Metzger,” Stimler says.
However, if you know your Jewish holidays, and are fortunate enough to get a seat at the restaurant on the days it’s open, it doesn’t matter who you are. Says Stimler: “It’s always nice to have celebs, but we try and focus on making sure that everyone feels like a celeb at Jezebel.”