Kevin Sbraga is branching out to Jacksonville | Photo by HughE Dillon
Local chefs branching out to other cities have taken the expected routes; Atlantic City, New York, Chicago and Washington D.C. But Kevin Sbraga is going to Jacksonville, Florida. The chef/owner of Sbraga, The Fat Ham and the forthcoming Juniper Commons is looking to open a still undecided concept at Jacksonville’s 220 Riverside Ave project. Sbraga’s restaurant will be one of three in the mixed-use development.
According to the Florida Times Union, which originally reported the story, Sbraga’s restaurant is aiming to open in early 2015.
Is Jacksonville a foodie town? ‘Top Chef’ star’s arrival at 220 Riverside a sign of good taste [Florida Times Union via @PhillyChitChat]
Sbraga Dining [Official]
Letto Deli, which has been reported to become everything from a Jose Garces wursthaus to a branch of the buzzed about Umami Burger is now slated to be demolished. But on the good side, the replacement for the single story building will house a restaurant. Michael Klein is reporting that Sylva Senat, who was the praised opening chef of Tashan will be in the kitchen.
Sylva Senat in deal at Letto Deli [The Insider]
Girard | Otto Architects
This fall, Cristian Mora and chef Brian Oliveira are opening Girard, a 70-seat French BYO at 300 East Girard Avenue. The restaurant which will be both brasserie and bruncherie with a grab-and-go section is being designed by James Beard Award nominated architects Joshua Otto AIA.
The design is inspired by pop art. Bright white marble countertops and tabletops will populate the dining room.
Girard will have a couple of unusual features that will differentiate the restaurant. Girard will be reservation-only and will not solicit gratuity for servers. Instead, Mora and Oliveira will pay a “living wage.” similar to the way restaurants operate throughout Europe. “Our business model allows us to offer our employees health insurance, paid sick days and profit sharing, which we’re very excited about,” said Oliveira.
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Andy Farrell, City Tap House beer steward sent us a video today that should please Public House haters (and we know you’re out there). The video shows the demolition currently happening at the former happy hour haven on 18th Street as it gets set to become Philadelphia’s second City Tap House this fall.
City Tap House – Logan Square [Foobooz]
Calling all broke college students and anyone else who loves free things and tacos. In order to celebrate Union Taco’s grand opening in Manayunk, the taqueria will be giving away free tacos tomorrow between noon and 2 p.m. Each guest, whether dining in or taking out, will get one taco on the house, but you can enjoy the entire menu, too.
This is Chef Nick Farina’s second Union Taco, and while the menu is almost identical to Northern Liberties’, though you won’t find any flatbreads at the Manayunk location. Yet that didn’t hinder Farina’s enthusiasm for his new opening. “I’m really excited to meet our new clientele and introduce our cuisine to Manayunk taco lovers.” And for you late-night taco lovers, Union Taco will be open until 3 a.m. on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
The new location will be at 4229 Main Street.
Union Taco [Foobooz]
Union Taco [Official]
A reader provided us with a tip (and a pic) showing signs of progress at Petit Roti at 248 S 11th Street.
Set to open the doors in September, chef Olivier Desaintmartin, chef and Owner of ZINC and Caribou Cafe, hopes to bring a taste of France to Philly (again), but this time with a new spin. Desaintmartin will highlight France’s rôtisseries - a feat that seems more realistic when you hear that he has imported two authentic rotisserie machines from France. And along with the impressive machinery, Petit Roti will also have a pantry full of vinegars, oils, jams, olives, and more to emulate the French épiceries.
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When 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]
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]
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 »
Serrano in Old City may have served its last meal on June 28th, but starting tonight there will still be dishes coming out of the kitchen. Chef Meghan Carnevale will be running the show (and her first kitchen) this summer as Ranch Road Taco Shop, Carnevale’s beloved taco truck, hosts a midsummer pop up at the now-closed-for-renovations Serrano.
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