Matyson Closes


Matyson’s final tasting menu. The BYOB closes after 12 years.

Center City BYOB, Matyson has closed after a 12-year run. Several staff members appeared in a photo on Instagram saying, “The end of a good run. Thanks for everything!” That post has since been deleted.

A quick stop in to the 19th Street restaurant today confirmed the closing. The chairs were up on the tables when they would usually be ready for lunchtime diners. A woman was cleaning out the hostess stand and confirmed that Matyson was closed. Towards the back of the restaurant, business casual types huddled and a couple others held large folders of documents.

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Volver Is Shutting Down For A Very Long Summer Vacation


Volver is done for the summer. Not for a week (as is becoming almost standard among many of the more notable Philly restaurants), or for two weeks (which is the point at which we grow nervous about them ever opening back up again), but for a full two months.

The final night of service was June 30, at which point the whole place (Bar Volver included) went quietly dark. This is the message left on their Open Table page:

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Get Ready for the Uptown Beer Garden

uptown-beer-garden-940Center City may not have gotten a PHS Beer Garden this year, but beginning July 1st, Teddy Sourias, owner of BRU Craft & Wurst, U-Bahn and Finn McCools is opening Uptown Beer Garden in the JFK Boulevard courtyard of the BNY Mellon Bank Building on the 1700 block of JFK.

The pop-up will feature 9,000 square feet of outdoor space for up to 500 people, picnic tables, granite benches, tree slab communal tables and a 35-foot long bar.

A portion of proceeds from Uptown Beer Garden will be donated to Philadelphia Animal Welfare Association (PAWS), including PAWS’s KATO (Kitty At The Office) program.

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Philadelphia, We Needed the Cheesecake Factory

Photo | Brian Howard

Photo | Brian Howard

Everyone has their safe space.

Maybe you like to take a time-out at Rittenhouse Square when the office feels like it’s closing in. Or perhaps you find peace in your garden at the end of a long day. Yoga studios are popular, as are churches, temples, synagogues, mosques and other buildings where vampires aren’t welcome (or aren’t usually welcome — it all depends which season of Supernatural you’re watching).

My personal sanctuary — that little nook of the world where time seems to stop and breathing comes easy — is The Cheesecake Factory. Read more »

Plenty Cafe Is Adding Liquor Licenses to All Locations

plenty-cafe-400Big things are happening at all the Plenty Cafe locations. The East Passyunk and Center City Plenty locations are getting liquor licenses and introducing dinner menus and full bars. The new menus will include small plates inspired by owners’ Anthony and Damon Mascieri’s travels around the world. By day, they’ll continue to focus on coffee, breakfast and lunch, but at night they’ll transition to full service with the new menu. The drink menu will mainly focus on beers and wines, but there are plans to feature rotating specialty cocktails, too.

The East Passyunk location will briefly close for renovations this summer and re-open as quickly as possible. The plan is to re-launch the East Passyunk location and then move on to opening what will be their largest location in Queen Village. All this should be done before the end of this year.

Plenty Cafe- Queen Village [Foobooz]
Plenty Cafe – Center City [Foobooz]
Plenty Cafe- East Passyunk [Foobooz]

Headlines: Boyd Site to Get TargetExpress; Tower Request Withdrawn


Early rendering of the redevelopment plan

Target, Tarjey, whatever you call it — at least one is coming to Center City. According to the Inquirer’s Jacob Adelman, Target spokesperson Erika Winkels has announced that a portion of the Boyd Theatre development site will include a 21,000-square foot TargetExpress store.

Adelman writes the spot reserved at 19th and Chestnut — anticipated to have a July 2016 opening  — will cover “over two floors” of the historic Raymond Pace Alexander building, which, per the latest plans, is slated to be “enlarged through construction of an adjacent three-story retail building.” Said building is part of the recently approved redevelopment plan for the project. From the Inquirer (emphasis ours):

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A.Kitchen Is Launching An Express Lunch Service

A.Kitchen now serving weekday express lunch.

A.Kitchen now serving weekday express lunch.

This one’s for the Center City crowd looking for something a little different for lunch.

A.Kitchen and A.Bar are rolling out a new weekly changing sandwich-and-a-side special, and it will probably trump your usual hoagie.

Actually, it’ll pretty much definitely trump your usual hoagie. I mean, if nothing else, we’re talking about bread from High Street On Market and that is always a good thing.

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Chinatown Wawa Closes

chinatown wawa closed

Graphic via Trocadero

The Chinatown Wawa at 1038 Arch Street has closed. The location, which was the smallest of Center City’s Wawa stores, shuttered at midnight, Sunday June 7th. A spokesperson told’s Michael Klein that Wawa wants to find another location in the area.

The Chinatown Wawa was always a bit of an anomaly, besides its size, it may have been the dirtiest Wawa store we’ve ever visited.

The Wawa closure leaves Center City with four location of the convenience chain.

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PHOTOS: Leasing Has Started at Avenir on Fifteenth in Center City

Photos by the Scully Company. Courtesy of Lorraine Gimblett.

Photos by the Scully Company.

Last March (boy, that was quick), we told you about six Philadelphia development projects that were springing forward this year. For fun, we tacked on just one more to that list for good luck: Avenir on Fifteenth. You can call it Avenir (French for “future”) for short.

Located at 42 South 15th Street, the apartment complex is an adaptive reuse of the Robinson Building, which had previously been office space. (You might know it as the building with the Kimye Wendy’s, which has since moved up the block and off of the corner). Developed by the Scully Company and Alterra Property Group, the newly refurbished structure has had its floors gutted and claims a sleek look inspired by the sans-serif typeface. Fun fact? There are 180 “efficiently designed apartments,” some of which are Philly’s first micro units ranging from 314 to 434 square-feet! There are, however, multiple sizes and floor plans offered with the flats, studios, one- and two-bedroom units.

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