Bok Bar Opens Tonight

Instagram photo by

Instagram photo by R. Eric Thomas

A year after the successful Le Bok Fin pop-up at Bok, the rooftop bar is back in a more permanent fashion as Bok Bar.

The outdoor bar on top of the former Edward W. Bok School opens tonight with a menu of Vietnamese and Filipino dishes from chef Ronan Libunao. Look for bánh mí sandwiches, sesame balls and chocolate suman, a Filipino specialty that is made of glutinous coconut rice with chocolate prepared in a banana leaf. All items on the menu are priced under $10.

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Sneak Peek at Nicholas Elmi’s Bar, ITV

Top Chef winner Nicholas Elmi opens ITV next to his Laurel on East Passyunk.

Top Chef winner Nicholas Elmi opens ITV next to his Laurel on East Passyunk.

ITV, the bar from Laurel’s Nicholas Elmi officially opens this Saturday, July 2nd at 1615 East Passyunk Avenue. Elmi has been planning the bar next to his restaurant Laurel, for more than a year. The name ITV comes from “In the Valley” which is what the Lenape word Passyunk means.

The dark and attractive marble bar seats around 12 at leather bar stools. The backbar and walls are off-black with gold gold piping. The design, done by Eimer Design also includes floral wallpaper made of thinly rolled wood. Beyond the bar is a banquette with seating for eight plus a lone table for two.

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Manatawny Still Works Opening Tasting Room on East Passyunk

The Manatawny Stillworks tasting room will open on Passyunk Avenue | Photo by Arthur Etchells

The Manatawny Stillworks tasting room will revamp the kitchen of Chiarella’s on Passyunk Avenue | Photo by Arthur Etchells

Manatawny Still Works will be the first local distillery to take advantage of a change to Pennsylvania’s Limited Distillery license that allows distilleries to open satellite tasting rooms. The Pottstown based spirits manufacturer has signed a lease and intends to open a tasting room at 1603 East Passyunk Avenue. The location is the former kitchen of Chiarella’s Ristorante.

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The Cheeseburger at Fountain Porter: An Appreciation

Fountain Porter. Photo by Jared Brey.

Fountain Porter. Photo by Jared Brey.

In the past, we’ve given the burger at Fountain Porter a Best Of Philly award for Best Bargain Burger. We’ve included it in two different round-ups–our big list of the Best Burgers In Philly, and our guide to Classic Bar Foods. And now, there’s this: An appreciation of the $5 burger from Philly mag man about town, Jared Brey.

I want to say that I’ve eaten the cheeseburger at Fountain Porter between 10 and 20 times, most recently about thirty minutes ago.

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Learning Curve: Sate Kampar Reviewed

Photo via Sate Kampar

Photo via Sate Kampar

This is what you do. You go to Sate Kampar on a first date. You save it for someone special—for when Tinder, the phone psychic, your matching Deadpool tattoos or shared fear of dying alone and being eaten by raccoons tells you this is the one. That it’s going to go the distance.

You go to Sate Kampar and you drift down into the hard-backed wooden chairs, under the soft yellow glow of the lights. You order off the sate menu (satay is how you spelled it, always, until seeing it done this other way in a place that probably knows), because meat on sticks? That’s easy. That’s just a little bit foreign but still approachable, good for a first date.

You go for the kambing (the goat) because it’s that kind of night and you’re willing to take chances, and then the ayam (the chicken) for safety.

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Philly Maintains Pace in Walk Score Rankings

East Passyunk Avenue's eclectic collection of shops and restaurants have played a major role in improving their neighborhood's walkability. | Photo by J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia

East Passyunk Avenue’s eclectic collection of shops and restaurants have played a major role in improving their neighborhood’s walkability. | Photo by J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia™

No American city, not even New York, is a “Walker’s Paradise,” according to Walk Score, the outfit that rates communities according to how easy it is to access places on foot (and by bike and transit).

But nine of the top 10, including No. 4 Philadelphia, are rated “Very Walkable” by Walk Score.

New York, as always, topped the walkability ratings with a Walk Score of 89 – just shy of “Walker’s Paradise” status. In a “Walker’s Paradise,” daily errands do not require a car to perform them. Most errands can be performed without one in “Very Walkable” neighborhoods. Read more »

Rival Bros. Coffee Coming to East Passyunk

rival-bros-11th-tasker-940Rival Bros Coffee, the coffee company from Jonathan Adams and Damien Pileggi have announced that they are opening their second location, this one across from the Fountain on East Passyunk, at 11th and Tasker Streets, the former home of Chiarella’s.

The Rival Bros. Coffee Bar will have a similar vibe to Rival’s 24th and Lombard location and the menu will be the same, including a rotating selection of breads and pastries from High Street on Market.

Rival Bros. Coffee Bar – East Passyunk [Foobooz] 

Get Ready for Flavors of the Avenue

flavors avenue passyunk 940Today is the last day for discounted tickets to East Passyunk’s Flavors of the Avenue event. This year, the annual eating and drinking festival is set for Sunday, April 24th and will feature 25 East Passyunk Avenue restaurants serving up bites. Tickets to the event are $75 per person, $70 today.

Saté Kampar and Perla are among the new restaurants participating in the Flavors of the Avenue. Also new this year, Passyunk Avenue restaurants will be serving specially-priced Flavors cocktails on Friday, through Sunday of Flavors weekend.

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Plenty Café Introduces Late Night Happy Hour

The Cusco Sandwich at Plenty Cafe

The Cusco Sandwich at Plenty Cafe

Every Monday through Thursday from 10 p.m. to 11 p.m., Plenty Café of East Passyunk is having a late night happy hour. Here are the specials they’re offering:

  • $2 off N’duja, ricotta, and spanish tortilla toasts
  • $2 off kimci deviled eggs
  • 25% off all drafts and 10% off all cocktails.

There are also some new additions to the menu at the East Passyunk and Center City Plenty Cafe locations, including Spanish shrimp and a veggie skillet, as well as their take on the Peruvian lomo saltado, the Cusco Sandwich (pictured), with local farm-raised smoked brisket marinated in a blend of garlic and soy. The Cusco is topped with a mixture of sautéed peppers and onions, arugula, sliced tomato, and their house aji aioli. Plenty’s Michael Harding is willing to put the Cusco up against any beef sandwich in the city.

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