Gigi Italian Bistro In Manayunk Has An Opening Date

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Manyunk’s newest BYOB, Gigi Italian Bistro, has an opening date.

Next Wednesday, August 3rd, Craig Wilson and Jacqueline Au will officially open the doors to their second restaurant. As promised, the menu focuses on pasta, poultry, meat and seafood, and tops out at $32. Check out the full menu below.

Gigi will be open Wednesdays through Sundays starting at 4 p.m.

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New BYOB to Open in Wayne

IMG_3821Despite good reviews, Wayne’s tiny crepe spot, Creperie Bechamel just closed itss doors this past Sunday. But the creperie is making way for something a little more upscale and refined.

Tara Buzan, owner of To the Table Catering just bought the restaurant and is planning to open BYOB in the space this fall. Buzan previously owned A Taste of Britain, but has been working as a private chef and caterer for the last 5 years. But she’s ready to get back into the restaurant business.

“The timing just seemed right. I sold my previous restaurant when my son was one,” said. “Now he’s six and I guess I just have the itch.”

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A Fish Story: Blackfish Revisited

Blackfish Reviewed | Photo by Samuel Markey

Blackfish Reviewed | Photo by Samuel Markey

The dining room at Blackfish in Conshohocken is white, but not cold. Not icy, the way some white, restaurant-shaped boxes can be. The dark wood floors help. The matching chairs. The colorful spines of cookbooks stacked on a shelf, making the place look like it’s been styled for an Architectural Digest photo shoot, or maybe something from a summer issue of Martha Stewart Living. Not lively, exactly, but alive.

The white ceilings and white tablecloths and white plates make every color pop. The sharp red of garden tomatoes in a summer salad, the green tangles of seaweed on which sit the stony shells of oysters, the rich, textured yellow-brown of a curry sauce puddling around a fist-sized cut of tilefish perfectly golden from the pan: In this sterility of white-on-white, the plates being put out by Chip Roman’s chef de cuisine, Yianni Arhontoulis, and his crew go off like fireworks. The entire restaurant becomes a blank space, and all you can see are the blooms and sparks in front of you. Everything else fades into the background.

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Breakfast of Champions: The Dutch Reviewed

 

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The Dutch | Photo by Emily Teel

Breakfast is the last great, untouched frontier. Of all the meals available to us (lunch, dinner, supper, elevenses, fourthmeal, midnight snacks, etc.), breakfast is the most pure, the most un-fuck-with-able. No one in his right mind tries to innovate during breakfast. No one tries to dazzle you with technical wizard-powers or supply lines to long-lost fruits and vegetables. Breakfast is toast and jelly. Coffee. Pancakes. Eggs and bacon. Waffles in all their myriad glories. It is, occasionally, oatmeal. Complicated (but comforting) pastries. Half a grapefruit doused in Wild Turkey. Whatever.

I love congee and chilaquiles as much as anyone, but Americans own breakfast the way the French do dinner. We have stolen all the great ideas ever had about breakfast and made them our own. Americans are so good at breakfast that our canon doesn’t extend merely to regional variations, but to social, religious, economic and historic ones as well. The trucker’s breakfast is a thing. The yoga breakfast. The camp breakfast. The Lutheran pancake social or Continental or Southerner’s petit déjeuner. Breakfast knows no bounds save temporal. And brunch? Well, brunch doesn’t even have those rules to adhere to. Brunch laughs at the notion of rules.

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Cocktail Dinner at Russet BYOB

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Sara Justice at COOK

A cocktail dinner at a BYOB? Yep, that’s what’s happening on Tuesdays in July at Russet. Today, July 19th, sees The Franklin’s Sara Justice creating two cocktails to go with chef Andrew Wood’s four course tasting menu.

Justice is shaking up two cocktails for tonight’s dinner:

  • Violent Femme Punch – with tequila, Fino sherry, falernum, ginger, pineapple, lemon, beet and cilantro
  • The Woman in the Dunes – with gin, scotch, fino sherry, orgeat, lemon, lime and bitters

Tickets for the dinner are $65 per person (plus gratuity). Guests may call 215-546-1521 to reserve a space.

If you can’t make it tonight, you will have one last chance to attend a Tuesday Night Cocktail Dinner. Chris Arnone from Zahav will be making cocktails on Tuesday, July 26.

Russet [Foobooz]

Johnny Brenda’s Chef Aiming to Open His Own BYOB

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Renderings of Elwood at 1007 Frankford Avenue

On Tuesday, July 12th Johnny Brenda’s chef Adam Diltz is going in front of the Fishtown Neighbors Association seeking approval to open a BYOB on Frankford Avenue across from the Fillmore. The restaurant, named Elwood after Diltz’s grandfather will seat 30 and serve food he describes as Mid-Atlantic/Pennsylvania regional.

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Audrey Claire Turns Twenty

Audrey Claire turns 20

Audrey Claire turns 20

In 1996, Audrey Claire Taichman opened Audrey Claire on 20th and Spruce. Taichman has expanded her reach since then, and now owns and operates two other businesses: Twenty Manning Grill and COOK. But now, twenty years later, her original BYOB will be celebrating it’s anniversary this coming Tuesday, June 28th.

To celebrate two decades of Audrey Claire, the crew will be hosting a five-course meal with some of the best dishes from their opening menu. The prix fixe menu will cost $40 per person, and the best part? 20% of all proceeds from the event will be donated to the OneOrlando Fund which supports victims of the recent Pulse nightclub tragedy.

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Medusa Pizza Opens Today in Fishtown

IMG_2905Fishtown just got a new place to grab a slice. Sicilian pizza joint Medusa Pizza (2327 Gaul St.) is opening at 4 p.m. today.

The restaurant is owned by the Villico family, who are no rookies to the pizza game. They have three restaurants in Center City (Joe’s Pizza, Ciao, Margherita), but this is the first one they’ve built from the ground up. It’s also their first restaurant to feature a wood-fired oven.

Casimira Villico, the owner, said they choose Fishtown to get out of Center City and into a new and different neighborhood.

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Italian BYOB Coming to Main Street in Manayunk

Jacqueline Au and Chef Craig Wilson | Photo by Dallyn Pavey

Jacqueline Au and Chef Craig Wilson | Photo by Dallyn Pavey

Craig Wilson and his fiancee Jacqueline Au who are behind the curiously punctuated Maya.J are preparing to open their second restaurant in Manayunk. Gigi Italian Bistro BYOB is replacing So Crepe at 4357 Main Street. Wilson and Au are promising a cozy feel, like being invited into a mother or grandmother’s home.

The menu will offer pasta, poultry, meat and seafood. The menu will range from $15 to $40.

Check out some photos of the plates »

South Helm Is Now Open

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South Helm’s doors are now open

The awaited sequel to Helm officially opened its doors on June 3rd.

Located at 100 Morris Street, South Helm is Michael Griffiths’s and Kevin D’Egidio’s second restaurant. General manager of Helm, Justin Manne, will also be heading up operations at South Helm. The team opened Helm just over a year ago, and they are on a roll.

A preview of their menu posted on Instagram teases at the dishes they will be offering and tops out at $14. Just like Helm, the menu will rotate and change week to week with farm-to-table specials. Griffiths said not to expect anything over $16 on the menu.

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