Right from the start, the crew at Avance knew two things about the downstairs bar at the former Le Bec Fin. One, it desperately needed a makeover so that everyone in the city who didn’t wish it was still 1987 would stop making fun of it. And two, it needed to have a really good burger or no one was going to take it seriously as a bar no matter what they did to the interior.
Well it appears that they got that burger thing right. First there was Adam Erace who, in his upstairs/downstairs review of the place, liked his meal on the main floor just fine but loved the burger at the bar. I've had it twice myself and won't disagree--it's a great burger, and the chickpea fries that come on the side are probably one of the coolest side-dish-reinventions of the season.
And now, Craig Laban has weighed in, writing a piece about Avance's bar burger in advance of the inevitable review of the upstairs. He says:
But its North African flair is what really lit my tastebuds, the harissa-spiced fresh mayo contrasting with piquant feta, and a smoky sweet tang of grilled red onion marmalade.
Crispy rails of chickpea fries scattered with herby charmoula complete this hearty, exotic plate: a "proper" bar burger, indeed, and then some.
You can check out the full mini-review at the link below.
Good Taste: Burger From Avance [Philly.com]