The one-story building at 20th and Ludlow has been a series of bars that have come and gone with questionable business models. Remember Xchange, where the prices were going to fluctuate based on demand?
But now the space is being transformed into Farmer’s Keep, a fast casual restaurant that will serve up healthy, natural foods that will avoid common allergens.
Owner Josh Bullock tells us that Farmer’s Keep will offer 25 or more composed salads that can be enhanced with a rotating selection of 5 to 6 proteins. There will be no nuts, shellfish, gluten, dairy or eggs in the restaurant. That should be good to eliminate 91% or so of the food allergies out there. The salads are sold by weight and then can be taken to go or eaten in the sixty-seat basement dining room. Farmer’s Keep will also have 30-seats outdoors when it opens in mid-April. And down the line, Bullock is looking to add a roof deck.
Recipes are being designed by chef Ian Natowsky, a Starr Events alum who is looking forward to highlighting the fresh and when possible, local ingredients at Farmer’s Keep.
Farmer’s Keep [Foobooz]
Victor Fellus, the owner of Mix and Victor’s Bar, is opening Ventuno, adjacent to those businesses, at the base of the Riverwest condominium at 21st and Chestnut.
According to Fellus, the restaurant is intended to open in about a month, with a menu focused on, “fun food, with 15 different homemade soups and a salad bar similar to saladworks.”
The restaurant will also serve grab-and-go style sandwiches and ice cream. Fellus said that he intends Ventuno to operate as a quick and easy lunch or dinner option for the neighborhood.
Waffles and Wedges is the name of the Belgian waffle, French fry spot coming to 1511 Pine Street. Andrea Capecci and her partner Laura Judy are spinning off their food truck, Pbon’s Fresh Food of Philly food truck into a brick and mortar business in the former home of Mexico on the Square.
Waffles and Wedges are aiming to open in mid-to-late March and will be serving up liege waffles and baked fries. More than two dozen rotating sauces will enliven those potato wedges. Also on the menu, Pbon’s menu of melts, including crab and cheese, sausage and cheese as well as a cheesesteak melt will be coming inside.
Waffles and Wedges [Foobooz]
Tria posted a photo today of the progress they’re making at their new Fitler Square location. The Tria Fitler Square has been described as “almost on schedule” which should put the opening sometime in March.
The Tria on Fitler Square replaces Dmitri’s, and unlike the other two Tria Cafe locations, the restaurant will feature a full kitchen.
Check out the photos from a month ago »
Pasta at Il Pittore | Photo courtesy of Starr Restaurants
For all of Philadelphia’s culinary diversity — and from Bustleton Avenue’s new Moldovan spot to Indonesian fare in Point Breeze, we at Foobooz are big believers — this is still a city where Italian restaurants rule. Read more »
Tonight, the Center City Residents Association (CCRA) is holding a community meeting at 10th Presbyterian Church (17th and Delancey Street) at 7 p.m. On the agenda is the future development at the site of Little Pete’s. Clemens Construction will be presenting its plans for a Hudson Hotel at 17th and Chancellor. The property will need a zoning change to see the 300-room hotel built.
The proposed destruction of Little Pete’s has hit a nerve with Philadelphia residents, as well as some at least one famous comedian. Recently Joel Mathis caught up with “Little Pete” himself, Peter Koutroubas.
Read on for Mathis’s interview with Little Pete »
The first two Philly Cooks Tasting Tours are now on sale. Get unprecedented access to top restaurants in Old City and Center City. Each neighborhood-focused tour takes you behind the scenes at three different restaurants.
The Old City and Center City Tasting Tours take place on Tuesday, Februray 17th. The Old City Tour visits Capogiro’s new pizzeria Capofitto for a pizza primer, then heads to Eli Kulp’s High Street on Market for breads, pasta and meats before finally landing at Peter Woolsey’s La Peg for a history lesson and French pastries.
The Center City tour kicks off in the private kitchen at Kevin Sbraga’s latest restaurant, Juniper Commons for an assortment of appetizers and gin and tonics, then heads to Sbraga for a pasta and wine tasting before ending upstairs at Pub & Kitchen for large cuts of meat and make-your-own sandwiches.
For more details, check out the Philly Cooks Tasting Tours page. And don’t hesitate, tickets are extremely limited.
Philly Cooks Tasting Tours [Philadelphia Magazine]
Be Well Philly is taking the angle that Oyster House is hosting a 5K led by a giant lobster tomorrow. And while true, we here at Foobooz are much more excited about the $5 bowls of Oyster House chowder that will be served on the sidewalk in front of the Sansom Street restaurant, from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.
Of course if you do want to run with a giant lobster up the Art Museum stairs and get your chowder and Narragansett Lager for free, check out Be Well for details.
Oyster House [Foobooz]
The newest seats at V Street.
Craig LaBan visited V Street this weekend, three months after Vedge chefs Rich Landau and Kate Jacoby opened their Rittenhouse spot.
Vedge fans can get a more casual, globe-trotting taste of Rich Landau’s culinary magic at this affordable Rittenhouse Square ode to international street foods, which just happens to also be vegan. From Hungarian fritters to Latin-inspired carrot “asado,” borders melt away on these small plates, thanks to Landau’s inventive vision and uniquely wide-ranging command of bold ethnic flavors. The long and minimalist three-room space is an intimate and cozy haven to graze, watch chefs work the grill at the back kitchen counter, or sip an excellent cocktail at the airy front bar while 19th Street strolls by.
Three Bells – Excellent
V Street [Philadelphia Inquirer]
V Street [Foobooz]
Center City District’s Restaurant Week has commenced, meaning two weeks of crowded restaurants, limited menus and grumpy waitstaff. Looking to avoid the chaos? Matyson is featuring a lobster tasting menu this week through Thursday, January 22.
This five-course meal is $55 per person.
Check out the menu »