Act Two: Parlor Reviewed

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Trio of pizzas at the Parlor | Photo by Danya Henninger

Confession of a city critic: Whenever I have to schlep out to the suburbs, I can’t help but grit my teeth. Expectations drop beyond the county line. For every Junto, there are three Saint Jameses, and there goes an hour’s worth of unleaded into the ledger of our atmospheric doom.

But I exaggerate. The Saint James’s awfulness lay far beyond the reach of replication, much less in triplicate. Yet trepidation nevertheless filled the family wagon as we made our way to its replacement in Ardmore’s Suburban Square. Owner Rob Wasserman rebooted the ill-starred concept in March as a pizzeria called Parlor, where pies bearing somewhat distressing names such as Buffy and Beastmode awaited us. Read more »

Verdad Reopens Tomorrow With A New Menu

VerdadI have to admit, I didn’t know that Verdad was closed.

But it was. And now we get to write a post to tell you that it was indeed closed, but is opening back up this Friday, July 17th. So, good news!

Chef/owner Nick Farina closed the restaurant on July 5th because he wanted to “refresh its brand.” After years on the Main Line, he was looking to change things up, so he designed a completely new menu–one he hopes will be more challenging for him and his crew, and more indicative of their creativity, as he plans on doing more specials. Lots more specials, actually.

The details (and the new menu), right this way

Here’s the Proposal for the Suburban Square Expansion

Macy's-Suburban-Square

Oooh, the Suburban Square expansion proposal appears to be chugging along. Per the Main Line Times’ Cheryl Allison, Kimco Realty received a recommendation for approval from the Lower Merion Planning Commission for their tentative sketch plans two days ago. Now, the Building and Planning Committee is scheduled to hear them later tonight.

Here is what Kimco wants to do:

  • Construct four-level parking garage with 571 spaces at 75 St. James Place;
    garage would include 3,000 square feet of retail space at grade along Coulter Ave.
  • Construct two-story, 40,000-square-foot building at 100 Coulter Ave.;
    include first floor retail; second floor office space
  • Construct one-story, 3,445-square-foot addition to rear of Trader Joe’s
  • Demolish existing storage building with Class II historic resource (it was a former freight shed dating back to 1885)

Read more »

Narberth’s Oldest (and Long-Vacant) Church Could See a Mixed-Use Revival

Image via Google Street View

Image via Google Street View

Sitting right across from Narberth Train Station and just minutes from the borough’s downtown on foot, the former Baptist Church of the Evangel awaits a potential mixed-use revival that would include 4,500 square feet of office space and four two-bedroom apartments.

According to the Main Line Times’ Cheryl Allison, Bala Cynwyd-based Speciality Audit Services is eyeing up the landmark structure (its original section was built circa 1891) for its offices, with plans to keep the existing basketball court as “recreational space for the office employees,” while converting other sections of the stone building into residential units.

During its time as a church, the building claimed two rows of twelve pews able to hold 200 people, stained glass windows, slate flooring, carved wooden doors, and a cathedral wood ceiling, according to the property’s LoopNet listing. Additionally, the structure contained a Sunday School wing with classrooms on two floors, two pastor’s offices, and a social room.

Per Allison, SAS principal Jason Gordon says there are plans to renovate the interior, which has deteriorated over time, and leave the exterior as is. However, the stained glass, a detail noted as “likely of little value,” would be replaced. During last week’s informational presentation before Narberth’s planning commission and local residents, architect Dave  Brawer said the apartments would range “from just under 900 to 1,500 square feet.”

Still, the question of parking looms large…

Vetri Looking to Expand to Devon and Beyond

pizzeria-vetri-940It’s been clear since the get go that Marc Vetri, Jeff Benjamin and the rest of the Vetri Family team planned to expand their Pizzeria Vetri concept beyond Philadelphia. And now through their connections with Urban Outfitters, they’ve locked up their first out-of-market location. Benjamin tells Danya Heninger for Billy Penn that the Pizzeria Vetri will be opening next to an Austin Urban Outfitters.

Closer to home, Vetri’s restaurants could become part of Urban Outfitters’ lifestyle village in Devon. That project is slated to include an Urban Outfitters store plus a Terrain and Anthropologie, as well as 138-unit apartment building and restaurants. Though the deal isn’t finalized, Benjamin tells Heninger that there will likely be more than one Vetri Family restaurant in the Devon Yard project.

Pizzeria Vetri reveals big expansion: With Urban Outfitters’ help, to Austin and beyond [Billy Penn]
Pizzeria Vetri [Foobooz]

Susanna Foo To Close Radnor Location

aboutsusannapicSusanna Foo Gourmet Kitchen has been open in Radnor for nine years. But on Sunday, June 14th the Chinese restaurant will close. But as Foo herself says, “when one door closes, another opens.” Foo and her son Gabriel are closing to focus on their next project, SuGa at 1720 Sansom Street. SuGa will mark Foo’s return to Center City. Between 1987 to 2009, Susanna Foo was one of the most highly regarded restaurants in the city.

SuGa is looking to open this fall. Susanna Foo Gourmet Kitchen will be running specials now through its Sunday closing.

Originally SuGa was to have Susanna Foo’s chef de cuisine Anne Coll in the kitchen, but Coll recently signed up with Chester County’s Whip Tavern.

Susanna and Gabriel Foo sent the following letter out to their customers today.

Read the letter »

White Dog Cafe Opens in Haverford

Du Jour Market is now a White Dog Cafe.

Du Jour Market is now a White Dog Cafe.

The third location of White Dog Cafe opens today in Haverford. It is the second Main Line location to open since restaurateur Marty Grims purchased the original University White Dog from Judy Wicks. The Haverford location replaces Grims’ Du Jour Market.

The revamped market now consists of a bar and two dining rooms. The bar opens today at 3 p.m. with dinner beginning at 5 p.m. Lunch service begins next week, with brunch following next weekend.

White Dog Cafe – Haverford [Foobooz]

Main Line Monday: Glenlaurel Gladwyne Estate Going for Over $3.9 Million

TREND photos via BHHS Fox & Roach-Haverford Stn.

TREND photos via BHHS Fox & Roach-Haverford Stn.

It’s got a pretty name, and, fortunately, it offers so much more than that too. Glenlaurel, a stone and slate home by Durham and Irvine, is one of those regal Main Line residences that’s not only situated on three-plus-acres of “meticulously landscaped grounds” with mature trees and a spring fed pond, but was constructed in the style of an English Norman manor to boot. Throw in a pool and lighted tennis court and you’ve got yourself an impressive home.

In addition to its five bedrooms, the home’s service quarters provide three extra bedrooms. Recent changes to the house include renovated baths, refaced Poggenpohl kitchen cabinetry, and a finished lower level and covered rear terrace. A guest house / three-car garage has also been renovated and enlarged. It’s most visibly charming feature from the outside, however, must be the turret, which houses a turned staircase to the bedroom level where a master suite awaits.

Read more »

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