Chops Center City?


Photo via Wikipedia

We’ve been hearing rumblings about possible happenings at the former home of Oceanaire. First we heard the Cheesecake Factory rumors. Those have dried up a bit since Michael Klein put the kibosh on that with a statement from the company that they weren’t interested in the area. Cheesecake Factory needs parking, lots and lots of parking.

We’ve also heard Stephen Starr has checked out the space and most recently that Alex Plotkin of Chops Restaurant & Bar on City Avenue is interested in the space.

We caught up with Plotkin to find out if he would really consider bringing another steakhouse to Center City. Plotkin said he would love to do something downtown having already been associated with the Palm and Four Seasons but it is way too early to say for sure if something could happen at the former PSFS bank at 7th and Walnut. But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have some ideas for the space that was so opulently redone for Oceanaire.

Plotkin envisions a variation of Chops with more seafood and about 25% of the menu being USDA prime steaks. The wine list would consist of 150 wines all under $70. And in a feature sure to appeal to those who’ve suffered valet parking sticker shock elsewhere on Walnut Street, free valet parking.

There’s nothing in writing yet but it’s good to know the building is seriously being looked at.

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  • Laura

    Is it terrible that I wish they would open a cheesecake factory in center city? (already knows the answer)

  • I’m not judging you, Laura. You know why the Cheesecake Factory is always mobbed? Because the food is good! Sure, it isn’t haute cuisine, but sometimes you just want a nice plate of chicken Piccata and mashed potatoes.

    This is the same reason why Outback Steakhouse is always mobbed. Because they know how to cook a steak.

  • Jen

    He knows what he would do in center city because he almost singed on the dotted line for the previous Bleu space but got backed down.

  • peter

    Clare, can’t say I agree. By this logic does it mean that McDonalds makes a good hamburger or that subway makes a good hoagie? Places like the Cheesecake Factory and Outback Steakhouse are abusing (I use the word abuse because of the calorie counts of some of their meals) an American public that isn’t adventurous enough to discover that there is better food out there.

    Philadelphia is no place for the Cheesecake Factory or Outback or Carraba’s or Olive Garden or Applebee’s etc…. We have one of the best food scenes in the nation. All these restaurants should go back to the mall where they came from.

  • JK

    I think they should turn it into the world’s largest Red Lobster.

  • Julia

    I just walked by and there are signs now saying Due Due Due Ristorante and they are power washing the outside.

  • Dania

    I’m all about cheesecake!! Philly restaurants bore me. Best in nation. Yah right. Bring in the chains. Might be stronger competition. At least we know cheesecake is in it for the long haul.