Remember when “modern Spanish tapas” restaurants were all the rage? It was a grand ol’ time (in the early ’00s), when chefs could charge big mark-ups on tiny bites of food dressed in micro-greens, stamp the word “tapas” on it, and sling it out into the dining room where hungry guests would crowd around three peas on a shiny earthenware share-plate and call it a night. We loved it. Ate it up. Small plates? How European.
And then, we — like we always do — got bored of it. Sure, Amada, Tinto, and Jamonera are all still there, alive and well. But we maxed out with our frou-frou Spanish restaurants, and slowly but surely, the tapas craze came to an end.
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The café-style community great room at 1213 Walnut. | Photos: Sandy Smith; renderings: Design Collective via Goldenberg Group
Philadelphia’s newest hotel is in its home stretch, sprinting towards an August opening.
Wait, did I say “hotel”? Forgive me, for I had a momentary lapse of memory in recalling what I was touring at 1213 Walnut St.
The building that local wags had dubbed the “Fergie Tower” is being referred to by that moniker much less often now that it’s a reality. The three companies in charge of making it happen — the Goldenberg Group, Houston-based Hines and Washington-based ASB Real Estate Investments — have always called it by its Midtown Village street address in Washington Square West, and its tenants will most likely do the same; after all, if they don’t, the Postal Service might not deliver their mail. Read more »
Photo courtesy of Wrap Shack
After 10 years in Rittenhouse Square, Philly-based Wrap Shack is expanding to a second location in Midtown Village.
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Finally, the long-awaited Maison 208 has an opening date. And chef Sylva Senat and his team are so excited, they’re hosting a preview of the new space — complete with retractable roof — tonight.
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The Yard lounge and exterior of the Steele Building. Images courtesy of The Yard.
This week Philly got another shared office space and this time The Yard, an established New York-based chain of creative spaces, expanded out of state for the first time to Philly’s Midtown Village, Center City neighborhood.
Since launching in 2011, the Yard has opened eight locations across Brooklyn and Manhattan and it’s ninth location is now open at the Steele building where it occupies four floors and the building’s 2,000 square feet roof deck.
One distinguishing characteristic? Unlike other shared offices, you won’t find glass-to-glass enclosures at The Yard’s new location.
“Sometimes in an office you don’t want people looking over your shoulder at your screen and sometimes you can do without seeing your neighbor and their mess,” The Yard co-founder Morris Levy told Philadelphia magazine. And while you may want a window, maybe you don’t want windows on every side, Levy added. And the strategy to integrate less glass in the space has added better acoustic quality and even more creative space, he said. Occupants across all eight locations have made the space their own with photos, art and even paint. Read more »
The Cusco Sandwich at Plenty Cafe
Maybe you’re a freelancer with a few hours between meetings downtown and you want to keep up the productivity. Or there’s construction in your office building and you can’t get anything done with power tools grinding away upstairs. Or you work from home but you’ve reached the point at which you’ll freak out if you don’t leave the house today.
You need a spot to get work done — school, freelance, creative, or just catching up on email. You also need to eat, and as tasty as the croissants and cookies at most coffee shops are, they’re not exactly brain food.
We’ve rounded up some of Philly’s favorite spots to camp out for a few hours (or more), eat a real breakfast or lunch, crush your task list. For our purposes, we’ve stuck with Center City and adjacent neighborhoods; we also made free wi-fi for customers and an actual food menu (however brief) a requirement.
And for when the workday spans meals, we’ve compiled a few of our favorite trendy spots where you might spend a working lunch (and maybe happy hour afterwards) while chowing down on a more substantial, chef-driven menu.
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Chestnut Street in Midtown Village is heating up. Last week, we announced that beer and BBQ hall Tradesman’s would be opening late this year on the 1300 block. And nearby at 12th and Market, construction on the East Market project continues apace.
Now, the Asbury Park-based creative collective and restaurant group Smith will be opening two restaurants on the 1200 block of Chestnut. Neapolitan pizzeria Porta and comfort food and craft beer-focused Brickwall Tavern will set up outposts at 1214 and 1216 Chestnut Street, respectively.
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Frozen Salted Caramel Budino Stuffed Choco Taco / Barbuzzo
We’re rarely optimistic about the week ahead on a gray Monday morning like this, but a ray of hope just peeked through the clouds: Barbuzzo’s newest budino-based dessert is the Frozen Salted Caramel Budino Stuffed Choco Taco, and it’s available this Friday only.
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105 S. 12th St., Apt. 504, Philadelphia, Pa. 19107 | Images courtesy of PhillyLiving
When you hear the phrase “penthouse unit,” you know you’re in for a treat – and this unit located on the top floor of Midtown Village’s S.S. White Building is no exception.
This apartment occupies over 3,000 square feet of space and boasts 15-foot ceilings, Brazilian cherry hardwood floors, exposed brick walls, and our personal favorite, a huge skylight that spans the entire kitchen (seriously, look at that thing!). Speaking of the kitchen, this one features high-end appliances, an island counter with seating for four, a wine fridge and a pantry. Off the kitchen find a cozy office and laundry room. Read more »
Photograph by Charles Mostoller.
That the viaduct rail park is actually becoming a thing is, well, dumb luck. In 2015, when developers Aaron Cohen and Craig Grossman set their sights on a block just north of Chinatown, they liked what the elevated rail tracks lent to the area; they were authentic and gritty in the best possible way. Now the first phase of the park is under way, and that’s a huge bonus for their audacious plans. Read more »