Tale of the Tape: Cheesesteak at Jimmy G’s

Jimmy G's Steaks next to the Divine Lorraine.

Jimmy G’s Steaks next to the Divine Lorraine.

Jimmy G’s is a relative newcomer to Philadelphia’s cheesesteak scene, opening in 2013. The location sits below the Divine Lorraine where Broad Street intersects Ridge Avenue. Though the building that houses Jimmy G’s is a large corner property, the cheesesteaks are ordered at a window similar to Pat’s or Geno’s in South Philadelphia. And this Broad Street cheesesteak place also only offers outdoor seating in the lot next to the cheesesteak stand. Jimmy G’s offers roast pork, roast beef, chicken steaks and French fries in addition to cheesesteaks, but on a splendid summer afternoon, we were hankering for a cheesesteak.

Jimmy G’s offers the option of chopped versus slab steaks. We tried one of each.

Keep reading the Tail of the Tape »

Tria Will Replace Dmitri’s on Fitler Square

dmitris-fitler-squareWhen we first tipped off that Tria Cafe was coming to the old Dmitri’s at 23rd and Pine we admittedly rolled our eyes. After all, just about every restaurant vacancy is rumored to become a Tria. It’s usually just wishful thinking but the neighbors of Fitler Square can cheer, Tria is really coming to the neighborhood.

Owner Jonathan Myerow told Michael Klein that the former Mediterranean restaurant will feature a full kitchen, “be more dinner-friendly” and serve a weekend brunch.

Look for the latest Tria to open before the year ends. Myerow also owns Tria Cafe locations at 18th and Sansom, 12th and Pine and Tria Taproom at 20th and Walnut.

Tria to open on Fitler Square [The Insider]
Tria Cafe
 [Official]

Happy Birthday to Kermit’s Bake Shoppe

kermits-bake-shoppe-cupcake-940

Kermit’s Bake Shoppe turns one  today. And from now until Friday, July 25th, the first twenty people a day who recite, in their best Lady Gaga voice, the words “pink polka dot” will get a free Funfetti cupcake.

Also, over the course of the week, twenty-five customers will receive a pink polka dot inside their to-go boxes, redeemable for a gift certificate.

Kermit’s Bake Shoppe [Foobooz]

Susanna Foo Returning to Center City

susanna-foo-suga-940 Susanna Foo’s return to Center City now has an address. A liquor license application recently appeared at 1720 Sansom Street and the application is in the name of Susanna Foo. The former home of Genji has long been shuttered, and also suffered a fire. This morning, the sounds of hammers was clear as renovations are already underway. 1720 Sansom Street is a two-floor space with 1,935 square feet on the ground floor and an additional 1,636 available in the basement for storage and refrigeration. Foo will reunite with her longtime chef Anne Coll, who left Meritage earlier this year at the new restaurant. No word on an opening date, and according to Michael Klein, he’s hearing the name will be Suga. Foo left Center City back in 2009 after a praise-filled run on Walnut Street. The new location will be under three blocks from her original downtown Susanna Foo. She also still owns Susanna Foo Gourmet Kitchen in Radnor. Suga [Foobooz]

Two Bells for Volver

living-salad-volver-940

Craig LaBan weighs in on Jose Garces’ culinary return to Philadelphia. The Inquirer critic calls the cooking at Volvér “egocentric” though he does call many of the dishes three-bell worthy, if he could order them a la carte.

The plates, without doubt, were still camera-ready gorgeous: ember-seared cubes of Wagyu beef posed beside crimson swipes of beet puree; nasturtium leaves floated atop lubina sea bass in a composition of rice and shrimp evocative its own ecosystem; epic salads tweezered into perfect still lifes by talented chef de cuisine, Natalie Maronski. Those dishes were examples of Volvér at its best, in which the inspirations were prime ingredients, not biography. The intricate salad was a naturalistic playground of delicate greens, creamy cauliflower panna cotta, and sublimely sweet carrots drawn from the garden at Garces’ Luna Farms, lifted by tangy Meyer lemon puree and the faux “dirt” of goat-cheese crumbles tinted black with squid ink.

Two Bells – Very Good

Garces’ Volvér overdoes the culinary performance art [Philadelphia Inquirer]
Volvér [Foobooz]

Trey Popp’s four-star review of Volvér [Philadelphia Magazine]

Divine Lorraine Will Have a Restaurant and Speakeasy

Photo by Jeff Fusco

Photo by Jeff Fusco

It really seems like the Divine Lorraine will get redeveloped. Developer Eric Blumenfeld has purchased the building for a second time and he has the funding in place to start renovations. KYW’s Hadas Kuznits accompanied Blumenfeld on a tour of the Grand Old Lady of North Broad this week. During the tour, Blumenfeld mentioned that he is aiming to bring in a high-end restaurant as well as a subterranean speakeasy to the Divine Lorraine. 

Guess who we spotted in front »

So What’s Up With All These Beer Gardens?

phs pop up garden

Don Russell, aka Joe Sixpack, answers the question I was afraid to know the answer to, “how are all these beer gardens legal?” Turns out the answer is in an LCB loophole created in a 2012 law change that was meant to make it easier for caterers to operate off-site. What has happened is establishments with liquor licenses have been able to set up beer gardens that operate as catering operations and in some cases, piggybacking permits from multiple establishments to create a full-time beer garden at a fraction of the cost of a full liquor license.

There’s no doubt the beer gardens are great for the city, and a recent trip to this season’s PHS Beer Garden at 15th and South not only saw hundreds enjoying the new outdoor space but the overflow filling Sawatdee, Cambridge, Rex 1516 and Jet Wine Bar as well. The Spruce Street Harbor Park and The Oval are both pushing the city and its residents to reimagine how they interact with areas of the city. But it is interesting to see how these beer gardens have all come about.

And hurray for loopholes.

Pop-up gardens take advantage of legal loophole [Philadelphia Daily News]

Sutton’s Parlor Today

suttons-daily-done

HughE Dillon (PhillyChitChat) was walking by Sutton’s Parlor, the “temporarily closed” bar run by Matt Swartz when he snapped the above photo. The name has been covered over, the menu removed and the inside of the bar has been cleaned out. This is just the latest note in the  Swartz saga. His Farmers’ Cabinet closed for a “summer cleaning” and was to reopen after July 11th. As of now, that hasn’t happened.

The Farmers’ Cabinet closes for ‘summer cleaning’ [Philly Insider]

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