South Helm Is Coming Along Nicely

helm south in progress 940

South Helm is coming along.

Michael Griffiths and Kevin D’Egidio, the guys behind the highly acclaimed Helm BYOB surprised many when they announced that they were opening their second location, less than a year after they opened their first restaurant in Kensington. And yesterday they posted a surprising photo on Instagram. The new spot, South Helm at 100 Morris Street is shaping up quite nicely.

Griffiths told us last month that South Helm was hoping to open in April and it looks like they’re right on schedule.

South Helm [Foobooz]

Josh Lawler Closing His The Farm and Fisherman

Colleen and Josh Lawler | Photo by Jason Varney

Colleen and Josh Lawler are closing their BYOB | Photo by Jason Varney

Eater’s Alex Tewfik has the scoop on Josh Lawler’s plans to close his the Farm and Fisherman BYOB on Pine Street. Lawler is closing his vastly popular 30-seat walk-in freezer free restaurant after five-years in order to work on other projects including a second version of his The Farm and Fisherman Tavern and Market plus a bigger place in the city.

No details on when and where the other projects will appear. The Farm and Fisherman will be open till the end of May.

The Farm and Fisherman Closing With Big Plans for the Future [Eater]
The Farm and Fisherman [Foobooz]

Nick Elmi Is Opening a Bar

Photo by Claudia Gavin

Photo by Claudia Gavin

Last May Nick Elmi went to work on securing a liquor license and expanding into the former coffee shop that is next door to his Laurel. The initial plan was to add some seating and install a bar. But here we are more than seven months later and that hasn’t happened.

So when we caught up with Elmi at Philly Cooks, we asked him what was up. Elmi, whose Laurel has been named the top restaurant in the city for the past two years, has decided not to mess up the good thing he has going at Laurel. So Laurel remains BYOB though he does now offer a $60 wine pairing for those interested.

About the bar »

Saté Kampar Brings Malaysian to East Passyunk

Ayam Kurma at Sate Kampar on Passyunk Avenue

Ayam Kurma at Sate Kampar on Passyunk Avenue

If you’ve never had Malaysian food, Saté Kampar might be the place to go try it. Opening today on 1837 East Passyunk Avenue, Saté Kampar will be serving a variety of styles of Saté (marinated meat on bamboo skewers, grilled over charcoal), as well as other authentic Malaysian food and drinks.

Here’s what to expect tonight:

Check out the full menus »

A Peek at Marigold Kitchen’s January Menu

Photo by Michael Persico

Photo by Michael Persico

Marigold Kitchen still doesn’t have a menu but they do offer a peek at some of the 13-15 courses that co-owners and chefs Andrew Kochan and Tim Lanza are preparing alongside chef Keith Krajewski.

This month, the $90 per person feast will include:

  • Leek Ash Raviolo: butter-basted hen of the woods mushroom and black ravioli, filled with liquified parmesan, ramp pesto
  • Australian Beef: seared tenderloin with foie gras butter and chocolate-braised crimini mushroom, puree of smoked potato and leek and Malbec jus;
  • Cheese & Pears: Korean pears macerated in bleu cheese, dipped in salted almond crumbs and paired with an apple cider churro.

Read more »

Townsend Wentz Readies BYOB, A Mano

Chef-Owner Townsend Wentz.

Chef-Owner Townsend Wentz opens A Mano with exec chef Michael Millon

Townsend Wentz has received a ton of accolades at his East Passyunk Avenue restaurant Townsend (#5 on the new Best Restaurants list), and he will debut his second restaurant, A Mano in coming weeks. A Mano is a casual Italian BYOB at 2244 Fairmount Avenue, in the Fairmount neighborhood. Wentz is bringing in Michael Millon as executive chef. Millon has worked with Wentz for ten years, including as Wentz’s opening sous chef at Townsend. More recently, Millon, a Lansdowne native, has been at A Voce, a Michelin-starred Italian restaurant on Columbus Circle in New York.

A Mano will offer regional Italian fare, moving from northern to southern Italy throughout the year to reflect what is fresh and available in Philadelphia. When the restaurant opens this winter that means dishes inspired by northern Italy including Alto Adige. As the weather warms, southern Italian dishes will make up more of the menu.

Handmade pastas will be integral to the menu where prices range from $8 to $28 per plate.

A Mano’s dining room features big windows that open wide to the street, plus wood topped tables (no tablecloths here), hardwood floors and bright grass-green banquettes.

 

A Mano [Foobooz]

26 North Starts Lunch

26 North, BYOB by Michael Stollenwerk

26 North, now open for lunch

Mike Stollenwerk has launched lunch at his Old City BYOB, 26 North. He has a menu of soups, salads, plates and “hand helds.”

If we were there right now we’d start with the steamed little neck clams with chorizo, go with the seared tuna tacos and tell our land-lover friend to get the Bistro Steak with Lancaster blue cheese.

Read more »

The Lost World: Papaya Vietnamese Contemporary Tapas Reviewed

Vietnamese Paella at Papaya | Photo via Papaya Vietnamese Contemporary Tapas

Vietnamese Paella at Papaya | Photo via Papaya Vietnamese Contemporary Tapas

On a Sunday night in late November, we weren’t the only table at Papaya Vietnamese Contemporary Tapas, but it was close.

My wife and I were there, drinking water because the place is BYO and we’d forgotten to pick up a bottle. There was the couple in the corner (smarter than us, drinking, all twinkling smiles and holding hands like they were auditioning for a jewelry store commercial,) and a family sprawling across two tables in the middle of the long, spare, narrow room—half-eaten plates of short ribs and papaya salad and special-of-the-night scallops scattered across the dark wood tables. Owner and chef Patrick Le was standing at the open kitchen’s pass, plating desserts. His mom, Thuy, shuttled back and forth between the kitchen and the big table where she sat (briefly) to talk with the family, who were obviously regulars and obviously having a great night.

Read more »

Girard on Girard Moving to Breakfast and Brunch Only

avocado-toast-girardJust in time for its first anniversary, Girard on Girard is shifting its concept to focus on daily breakfast and brunch only. The change goes into effect on Tuesday, December 1st and will feature a new menu as well as new hours.

The BYOB will open daily at 7 a.m., serving coffee, breakfast sandwiches, house-made pastries and morning specials.

Chef and owner Brian Oliveira says he’s “listened to what the neighborhood told us they wanted, which was a more casual place where they could relax, grab a coffee, and enjoy our popular brunch menu all week long.”

Brunch menu highlights »

Mike Stollenwerk’s 26 North Is Now Open

26 North, BYOB by Michael Stollenwerk

26 North, BYOB by Michael Stollenwerk

Last night was the official opening of Mike Stollenwerk’s latest restaurant, 26 North. The Old City BYOB features a seafood-centric menu of Stollenwerk’s greatest hits. Yep, skate wing with truffled spaetzle is on the menu, as is salmon belly and seared octopus. The space feels particularly large for a BYOB. The 48-seats in the long space with high ceilings provides plenty of room between tables. A marked difference for the chef who first got noticed in the tiny kitchen and restaurant of Little Fish. In addition to the seafood hits, 26 North also offers lamb for meat lovers and a vegetarian entree.

The space features exposed brick walls with dark wood accents. The wall art features pages from the Philadelphia Inquirer and other publications. A marble bar in the center of the room is a leftover from when the space was going to be a coffee shop but will be put to good use, especially at lunch.

The restaurant is currently dinner only but weekday lunch will be starting shortly with a “Hand Helds” section.

Check out the opening menu »

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