Eat Here Now: Whetstone Tavern

Beef cheek pierogis - Facebook

Beef cheek pierogis – Facebook

A while ago (like all the way back in 2015), there were two big concepts driving new restaurant openings in Philly: the upscale neighborhood tavern and retro-American cuisine. Places like Bud & Marilyn’s, La Peg and Kevin Sbraga’s Juniper Commons were all inspired by this one-two punch of edible nostalgia, and while not everyone who chased this style was successful in the big, loud way that we expect restaurants to be (Juniper Commons closed after six months, La Peg went through some massive concept and menu changes), Jeremy Nolen’s Whetstone Tavern made its mark in a different way. It succeeded quietly.
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New Chef and Menu for Whetstone Tavern

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Jeremy Nolen has been at the helm of Whetstone Tavern for quite some time now while, at the same time, overseeing kitchen operations at Brauhaus Schmitz and Wursthaus Schmitz–two of the other properties owned by Doug Hager. But now, he’s stepping back in order to focus his attention more fully on Brauhaus and its sausage-centric modern German cuisine, and one of his long-time Whetstone cooks is stepping up to take over the kitchen himself.

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Whetstone Celebrates Turning One

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Deviled Crab – just one of the new dishes at Whetstone Tavern | Photos by Vanessa Beahn

On Tuesday, July 19th, Whetstone Tavern, the bar/restaurant of Jeremy Nolen and Doug Hager (Brauhaus Schmitz) is celebrating its first birthday with an evening long happy hour.

The night will feature $3 Pilsner drafts, $4 wines, $5 Dad’s Single burgers and $6 punch. Complimentary hors d’oeuvres from Whetstone’s just released Summer 2016 menu will also be served along with popular items from the original menu like Kung Pao wings.

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A Beer Garden in the Sky Coming to Center City

Rendering of the upcoming Skygarten at 3 Logan Square

Rendering of the upcoming Skygarten at 3 Logan Square

At a height taller than the even the observation deck of Berlin’s famed TV tower, Fernsehturm Berlin, Skygarten will be one of the highest places in the world to hoist a pint or boot of German beer. And that’s what you’ll be doing on the 51st floor of 3 Logan Square (1717 Arch Street). Top of the Tower is teaming up with Brauhaus Schmitz to launch what they’re calling the “World’s Most Celestial Beer Garden.”

The 3,000 square foot indoor and outdoor space will curated by Doug Hager and his team at Brauhaus Schmitz. Hager will have four draft lines plus multiple German beers by the can and select local craft beers. Jeremy Nolen is working with the Top of the Tower’s culinary team to create a menu of bar bites and snacks.

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Some Big Changes At Whetstone

Photo courtesy Vanessa Beahn

Photo courtesy Vanessa Beahn

I really liked Jeremy Nolen‘s Whetstone when I checked it out a few months ago. It was one of the places that shaped the way I review neighborhood restaurants, and became a point of comparison for a lot of them that came after.

And now, with the new season, Whetstone is going through some changes. They’ve got a new menu, a new cocktail program, and a new (though very recognizable) face behind the bar.

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Hearty New Dishes at Brauhaus Schmitz

Duck Breast, new at Brauhaus Schmitz | Photo by Vanessa Beahn

Duck Breast, new at Brauhaus Schmitz | Photo by Vanessa Beahn

Today, Wednesday, October 21, Brauhaus Schmitz rolls out its new fall menu. The menu features new dishes created by Brauhaus Schmitz’s creative and always entertaining chef de cuisine, Henrik Ringbom.

The menu showcases flavors of the season in stick-to-the-rib German preparations.
Among the new dishes »

Twice in a Lifetime: Whetstone Tavern Reviewed

Passyunk Pork - pork chop, sharp provolone polenta

Passyunk Pork – pork chop, sharp provolone polenta | Photo by Caroline Russock

Jeremy Nolen—chef at Whetstone, the man behind Brauhaus and Wursthaus Schmitz, lonely local champion of modern German cuisine and a fella who knows an awful lot about tube-shaped meats—stopped by our table somewhere between the drinks arriving and the menus being taken away. He looked distracted, tired— sucking breath like a boxer in the third round suddenly realizing that the guy across the ring from him is more of a fighter than he’d expected. Read more »

First Look: Whetstone Tavern

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Back in the day, in the kitchen of the corner spot at 5th and Bainbridge when it was still called Coquette, head chef Jeremy Nolen first met his wife, Jessica

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