Eat Junto’s Best of Philly Winning Fish for a Good Cause

Junto's smoked sturgeon

Junto’s smoked sturgeon

The August full moon is known as a “Sturgeon Moon” as historically native Americans found it the best time to catch sturgeon in the Great Lakes and on Lake Champlain.

And now, MacGregor Mann of Junto will be donating a portion of each Best of Philly winning sturgeon dish sold to the Delaware Riverkeeper Network.

The sustainable-farm raised sturgeon dish is smoked on Alder wood with romanesco, fermented celery root, watercress, lemon verbena and white wine emulsion. The dish at the Chaddsford restaurant is $30.

Atlantic sturgeon were once plentiful on the Delaware River, although now less than 300 spawning adults from the Delaware River’s distinct genetic line of Atlantic sturgeon remain. Learn more about Atlantic sturgeon here.

The donation will continue as long as the sturgeon dish is on the menu, which hopefully isn’t going anywhere.

Junto [Foobooz]

Farmhouse Friday: West Chester Barn Converted Into Magnificent Residence

TREND images via

TREND images via

We don’t mean to play favorites here, but if we just had to choose a home on the Wyllpen Farm residential development to stand above the rest, it would definitely be this one. See, unlike its “newly” constructed neighbors, which were built between 1986 and 2000, this unique residence is a 175-year-old converted barn home outfitted with modern upgrades and balanced with original details.

Just looking at the photos gives you a sense of its original function, with hand-hewn beams and hayloft ladders all still present, as are the built-in bookshelves and beehive pillars. As mentioned earlier, though, it’s also been updated, these changes including remodeled upstairs bathrooms, butler’s pantry with wet bar and wine fridge, and an open kitchen with stainless steel appliances and granite tops. Outside, all the outdoor lighting and landscaping got a redesign in 2011.

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Farmhouse Friday: Incredible Pond-Front Retreat in Birchrunville

Photo credit: Nina Lea Photography

Photo credit: Nina Lea Photography | Listing with Eve Marberger, BHHS Fox & Roach-Exton

Exquisite in the truest sense of the word, it was a no-brainer when it came to choosing Stoney Ridge Farm for today. A beautiful property parked atop 6.9 acres in Birchrunville, Chester County, the scenic estate features a tree-lined driveway leading to an early 1800s stone colonial home with historically correct additions. Moreover, it’s got a generous offering of manicured gardens and pastures, plus a pond, stone barn and spring house.

Let’s take a closer look, shall we?

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Schools Are a Big Home Selling Point in Montco and Other Tidbits

Is back to school season really just a few weeks away? Unbelievable. What might be more believable, however, are the numbers crunched in a new report by real estate website Trulia, which sought to find where schools are a major selling point in home sales, where they’re less so, and whether there’s something to mentioning schools in a listing for a higher listing price. Take a seat and jot some notes, Properteers!

Image via

Image via

Using data from the 100 largest U.S. metros, gathered between June 2014 and June 2015,  Trulia Chief Economist Selma Hepp writes Montgomery County mentions schools in 22.5 percent of its home listings, bringing the Greater Philadelphia suburb to no. 3 on its list of “Where Schools Are a Big Selling Point.”It should be noted, though, the Montco ranking includes data from neighboring Bucks County and Chester County.

Montgomery County was just behind Orange County and San Jose, Ca., which have 28 and 25 percent of their listings mention schools, respectively. Meanwhile, schools as a selling point was less common in places like Las Vegas, NV (.7 percent); Cincinnati, OH (2.8 percent); Nashville, TN (3.4 percent); and Pittsburgh, PA (4.4 percent).

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Farmhouse Friday: Posh Dwelling Features Passive Solar Designs, Rain-Fed Stream

TREND images via Brandywine Fine Properties Sotheby's International Realty

TREND images via Brandywine Fine Properties Sotheby’s International Realty

Trailing on the green heels of that beautiful – not to mention freshly price-chopped –  LEED Plantinum-certified Slusher Residence in Fairmount is this wonderfully unanticipated home: a $1.65 million stunner also with LEED approval. Unlike the Slusher Residence, however, it’s a farmhouse lounging on a freaking wildflower meadow in Kennett Square. Ahem, excuse us while we go Pin-crazy…

No, but seriously. This place is definitely worth a look, especially if you’re interested in living in a pastoral setting for the long-term without giving up superbly modern amenities. (If you don’t believe us, the gallery will likely convince you.)

For starters…

What Would You Do with This Massive Kennett Square Estate?

TREND images via

TREND images via

We don’t know what to do with this eight-plus-acre estate in Kennett Square.

Rest assured, it’s not its acreage that’s left us puzzled – though, admittedly, its park-like grounds do give the impression of being more vast than they are since the property is surrounded by conservancy land – because we’ve seen plenty of homes sitting on similarly sized, if not larger, plots of land. Rather, it’s the custom-built mansion, which at nearly 19,000 square feet has us wondering just what the heck does one do with all that space?

Don’t get us wrong – it’s gorgeous. Luxury details abound, interior stone walls, and Brazilian cherry and oak flooring throughout…just who wouldn’t revel in a home like that?  Take for instance the two recreation spaces present in the seven-bedroom home: one on the second level, the other encompassing the entire lower level. Then there’s the two-story guest wing. Guest wing!

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Farmhouse Friday: Pastoral West Chester Gem Listed for $2.75 Million

TREND images via

TREND images via

It’s been in the hands of one family for close to a century, but now’s your chance to make it yours: Deborah’s Rock Farm in West Chester is on the market. Listed last month for a cool $2.75 million, the historic 88-acre estate claims a 9,000-square-foot stone manor home that’s been beautifully preserved and maintained, original bank barn, and tenant house. To boot, it’s got frontage on the Brandywine River and views of the Natural Lands Trust Stroud Preserve.

Like several of our farmhouse selections, Deborah’s Rock claims distinct architectural details that amplify its rustic appeal: brick-floored entrance hall, seven fireplaces, wood-burning stove, beehive oven, and a stone ha-ha wall. The country kitchen, which overlooks the gardens and Preserve, is centrally located at the core of the manor, making it easy to move between the formal dining room and family room.

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Farmhouse Friday: Dancing Deer Asks For $1.95 Million in Chester Springs

TREND images via Coldwell Banker Preferred

TREND images via Coldwell Banker Preferred

Mural-adorned and swathed in updates, the recently listed Dancing Deer Farm is just waiting to have all seven of its bedrooms occupied. The home, a sizable construction situated on four-plus acres in Chester County, offers over 5,400 square feet of living space, in addition to extra room in a carriage house and Pennsylvania bank barn with work space and wood shop.

Here’s the rundown on the main house:

  • Built circa 1790; includes three original fireplaces
  • Updated by Arcus Design in 1998
  • Mud room, finished lower level, laundry room with glass pocket doors
  • New cedar shake roof and Gaffney-designed patio
  • Kitchen includes Dacor and Thermador appliances, ice maker, built-in computer station
  • Bar with butler’s pantry

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Anne Coll named Chef at the Whip Tavern

whip-tavern-940Anne Coll has been named as the new executive chef of the Whip Tavern in West Marlborough, Chester County. Coll has worked for Susanna Foo at the original Walnut Street restaurant as well as Susanna Foo Gourmet Kitchen in Radnor. Coll also had a successful run at Meritage where she brought the Korean taco rage to Philadelphia, among other successes.

Coll was to be the chef for Foo’s return to Center City, but in taking the exec chef spot at the Whip, Coll will work much closer to her home, where she has a farm and a pet pig named Jenny.

At the Whip, Coll will work closely with Chester and Lancaster County growers to create traditional pub and local dishes. Coll starts June 8th and menu changes will follow.

Whip Tavern [Foobooz]

Victory Brewing Opens New Digs in Kennett Square

The Downingtown-based Victory Brewing Company has officially opened Victory at Magnolia. It’s on Cypress Street in Kennett Square in a new development that’s still under construction but so far includes townhouses and apartments. The surroundings aren’t so exciting: There’s a Rite Aid on one corner; a dance academy and a dry cleaner across the street; and not too much else in the immediate vicinity. But inside the seven-barrel brewery, Victory’s president and brewmaster Bill Covaleski spoke to an opening-day crowd with plenty of enthusiasm about the future for the location, which will feature, he said, plenty of site-specific beers. In fact, Covaleski told us he might one day make a mushroom beer, though he admitted that could be a tough sell.

The food menu is finely tuned for “beer enjoyment,” he said, and made from the freshest local ingredients—including, of course, plenty of mushrooms. The chef comes to the 220-seat restaurant from Victory’s Downingtown location, and is relishing this opportunity to create a new menu.
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