Last month’s Jardins de Provence. Photo by Stephanie Smith.
David Ansill has quite the story (much of which we’ve chronicled): back in Philadelphia after his repose in Jamaica, he’s brought great food and drink to Bar Ferdinand, and now he’s taking on the kitchen at the Good King Tavern, alongside chef de cuisine Mike Blau.
But here’s the tricky part. He’s not leaving Bar Ferdinand to go to Good King. He’s actually going to be overseeing things at both places.
Running this double-duty seems kind of crazy, if you ask us. But then again, from the looks of things he seems to be handling it rather well: with a new menu and events in the works this month, the Good King is already getting a makeover under Ansill’s command.
Will the balancing act last? Who knows. But for now, details and a menu after the jump.
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Sherry-Glazed Pork Belly with black garlic barley, garbanzos, ramps and fresno chiles
Your favorite French New Wave Cinema inspired restaurant (not that you have that many to choose from), Bardot, has released its new spring menu.
The menu includes a selection of tartines, small plates, and large plates. New items include:
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Vegan Commissary Kale Salad
Due to popular demand, Vegan Commissary is expanding its hours. The restaurant used to only be open on weekends from 10am-4pm, but starting on May 1 it will be open from 12pm-8pm on Mondays and Fridays for lunch and dinner, and 10am-8pm on Saturdays and Sundays (for brunch and dinner).
In other exciting news, Vegan Commissary has released its spring 2015 lunch/ dinner menu. Appetizers include mac and peas bites, kale salad, and pea soup. Entrees include lentil meatloaf, spaghetti with bolognese sauce, commissary burger and a seitan cheesesteak.
And if you really can’t get enough of Vegan Commissary, they’re hosting a Cinco de Mayo dinner there, with dishes like sopa de cactus and spring greens enchiladas. It’s a little sacrilegious to eat a meat and cheese free meal on Cinco de Mayo, but if you must, it sounds pretty good. You can check out the whole menu here.
Vegan Commissary [official].
Poached Mussels with English Peas, Shaved Radish and Vinaigrette | Photo via Aldine
When I heard that Aldine was changing its menu format, I thought maybe that meant the menu would no longer feature stupid colons in between ingredients (like sorry but,”sugar snap peas : pickled chili : smoked almond milk : rhubarb,” just does not look right). But alas, that was too much to hope for. Instead, Aldine is abandoning its unique tasting menu, which was divided into either the “omnivore” or “herbivore” menu, in favor of a more traditional format.
Chef and owner George Sabatino’s new menu is divided into first, second and third courses. First courses are either served cool or room temperature, second courses are slightly larger and served warm, and third courses are really the bigger main courses.
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Juniper Commons | Courtesy of Sbraga Dining
Juniper Commons, Kevin Sbraga’s ’80s themed restaurant at the corner of Broad and South, has debuted its new menu for spring, and it boasts big changes. The overhaul may have come in response to a series of lukewarm reviews from critics who called the restaurant’s food good but aggressively normal to the point of almost being boring.
Gone are the days of the rotating weekly rotisserie menu. In fact, the whole menu has been streamlined.
Some of the new dishes include garlic shrimp, eggplant fritters, lavender fried chicken, blackened salmon, broiled scallops, a soft shell crab sandwich, Wagyu flank steak and an $80 32-oz rib eye. In fact, the only entree that seems to have made the transfer from the old menu to the new one is the Surf and Turf, and even on that the lobster has been replaced by king crab.
Spring menu at Juniper Commons »
It wasn’t too long ago that Citron and Rose lost their big guns: Michael Solomonov, Steven Cook and Yehuda Sichel, the chef that pulled off a 3-star menu while keeping to a business plan that seemed so… specific.
But after unveiling a successful lunch menu, then a brunch menu, and then a sold out Winemaker dinner, it looks as though Citron & Rose is thriving on adversity. Now, with their new chef, Karen Nicolas, they have a new dinner menu as well, and on it, something called “Pickled and Roasted” which involves tongues and bone marrow and some other stuff. Seriously, I’m booking a reservation right now just because of it.
Check out the full new menu after the jump. It looks fun and exciting, and just as delectably, weirdly Jewish as it ever was before.
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The Saint James in Ardmore has been plagued by a number of poor reviews since it opened just a few months ago. Critics complained about weak service and even weaker food, to which owners Michael Schulson and Rob Wasserman responded by purging some of the opening staff (including chef Matt Moon) and reworking little things like Happy Hour menus.
But now the St. James has made a big menu change. A few weeks ago, they rolled out a new board which is much more limited than the opening menu, with the daily specials and flat breads sections cut entirely along with a number of smaller revisions. Having eaten there several times over the past few months, I saw a significant uptick in the quality of the food when I dropped by on a quiet Thursday night (less than a third of the tables were filled at 7 p.m.) after the recent change. There’s a solid raw bar, bowls of mussels, a pork belly sandwich and sides of English pea risotto and brussels sprouts with bacon. I enjoyed a simple cheeseburger that was not overdone and served on a soggy bun like the others that I had failed to enjoy on previous visits. And now, with this tighter, more focused menu, the St. James may even start producing food good enough to make folks forget about the terrible reviews handed down by both Craig LaBan and Foobooz’s Trey Popp and get some customers back through the doors.
You can check out the St. James’s new menu here.
Saint Or Sinner? [Trey Popp’s Review]
St. James [Official]
The menus at Bar Ferdinand have been in a state of flux ever since itinerant chef David Ansill came back from an ill-fated voyage to Jamaica to take over kitchen operations at the NoLibs tapas joint. There have been plenty of tasting menus put up by the back-of-the-house crew, but now it looks like Ansill has put his stamp on a final version of the regular board as well.
As things stand right now, the menu offers a wealth of small plates, plus family-style share plates (like wood-fired whole-roasted fish and Valencian paella) and a nightly tasting menu designed by Ansil that will go for just $45.
Want to get a peek at the new menu? Check it out after the jump.
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Vintage Wine Bar is getting some new updates in the form of a revamped menu. This menu heads in a decidedly stronger French direction. Think classic French dishes like Croque Monsieur and Pot au Feu, a deliciously rich short rib beef stew. Even the burger is très francaise, topped with bacon, cheddar cheese, cornichon aioli, bibb lettuce and pickled onions. If you recall, back in September Vintage held an event where diners would help choose the burger, tasting a trio of sliders and voting for their favorites, and this baby proved to be the winner.
Vintage [Official Site]