Rob Wasserman’s Burger Brawl Hasn’t Donated Nearly as Much Money to Schools as He’s Said it Has

Photo by HughE Dillon

Rob Wasserman | Photo by HughE Dillon

Restaurateur Rob Wasserman is best known as the owner of Rouge, the legendary Rittenhouse Square boîte that Neil Stein opened in 1998 and which Wasserman bought 10 years ago. But in recent years, Wasserman decided to add philanthropist to his business card, and Philadelphia magazine has learned that there is trouble in that department. Read more »

Snap Custom Pizza Opens on Sansom Street

snap custom pizza 400Snap Custom Pizza opens today at 11 a.m. at 1504 Sansom Street. It’s the third location for Snap and the first in Philadelphia proper. The other two locations from the Peace A Pizza founders are in Ardmore and Exton. This first Center City location is at the former home of Rob Wasserman’s 500° burger spot. Wasserman, who also owns Ritttenhouse Square’s Rouge is now a part of the Snap team.

Snap Custom Pizza takes the now familiar Chipotle-style assembly line and applies it to pizza. Customizable pizzas start at $7.49 and the menu also includes signature pizzas and salads.

Snap plans to rev up the expansion engine, looking to add 15 locations in the next 18 months.

Snap Custom Pizza – Sansom Street [Foobooz]

Suit: Former Rouge Chef Says He Was Called the N-Word During Employment

Rouge in Rittenhouse Square (photo by Megan DiTrolio)

Rouge in Rittenhouse Square (photo by Megan DiTrolio)

Rouge on Rittenhouse Square is one of the more storied restaurants in Philadelphia. Originally opened by the also storied restaurateur Neil Stein, it remains the see-and-be-seen Rittenhouse spot (though you could also make an argument for Parc) that it was when profiled in Philadelphia magazine in 2006 by Jessica Pressler. Well, on Wednesday, Rouge was sued for racial discrimination in federal court by a former sous chef. Read more »

Act Two: Parlor Reviewed


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 »

Parlor Pizza Bar to Open Early March


Former Saint James in Ardmore will become Parlor Pizza Bar

Rob Wasserman, owner of Rouge and 500 Degrees, has announced his plan to turn his Saint James into a family friendly pizza restaurant called Parlor Pizza Bar in early March.  The restaurant will be located at Saint James used to be, at 30 Parking Plaza in Ardmore.

Parlor Pizza Bar’s menu will center around artisan wood fired pizzas, as well as pastas and salads intended for families and groups. The restaurant will also be serving draft wines by the glass, with reasonably priced options starting at $6 a glass.

Otto Architects is remodeling the space, bringing in a crimson and gray palette. A Ferrari red pizza oven imported from Modena, Italy will be the focal point of the dining room.

Parlor Pizza Bar [Foobooz]

Main Line Happenings: Ardmore Becoming Beer Destination


Ardmore has become a beer geeks destination with the rise of Tired Hands Brewing. The tiny brewery  was just named to First We Feast’s 12 Bucket-List Breweries That Every Beer Lover Should Visit. The Main Line town has some other things happening as well. The eleventh Iron Hill Brewery location, grandly opened on Sunday at 44 Greenfield Avenue, just a block from Tired Hands. And speaking of Tired Hands, the brewery continues to make progress on its second Ardmore location. The larger location’s brewhouse was just delivered yesterday and the brewery will open in the first half of 2015.

The Saint James is closing. The much ballyhooed restaurant from Rob Wasserman (Rouge, 500º) and Michael Schulson (Sampan, Izakaya) opened in 2012 but was slammed by critics. Schulson left the partnership earlier this year and Wasserman will close the restaurant on December 30th. Michael Klein reports that the space will undergo six weeks of renovations before producing what Wasserman says will be a “‘very family-friendly'” restaurant.

More on the Main Line »

Third Annual Philadelphia Burger Brawl Set for Sunday, May 5th


Burgers. Lots of burgers!

That’s what’s in store Sunday, May 5th at the Third Annual Philadelphia Burger Brawl being held at the Fleisher Art Memorial, located on 719 Catherine Street in South Philadelphia. The event will feature twenty of the city’s top burger chefs duking it out to see who will come out with the top burger.

The invitation-only event sells out annually and more than 700 attendees are expected. Marc Summers will emcee the event.

The Philadelphia Burger Brawl was founded in 2011 by Rob Wasserman, owner of Rouge, 500 Degrees and The Saint James, as a private fundraiser to benefit the construction of computer labs in public elementary schools in the City of Philadelphia.

Confirmed Burger Brawl participants »

500º Spotted in the Office


Dan McQuade spotted this 500° bag in last week’s episode of the Office. 500° owner, Rob Wasserman had no idea his burger spot’s bag was going to show up on network television but then The Price Is Right didn’t tell him that a meal at Rouge, Wasserman’s Rittenhouse spot, was going to be a prize either.

@dhm [Twitter]
The Office [NBC]

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