Bid on Starr Dinners and Support Philadelphia Schools

starr-charity-buzzLast month we told you how Starr Restaurants was making it easy for diners to donate to support Philadelphia schools. Stephen Starr’s restaurants have also put together some interesting packages that you can bid on online. They include everything from omakase for four at Morimoto to a kids’ pizza party at Pizzeria Stella. There’s even an item that includes dinner for two at all 20 of Starr’s Philadelphia restaurants.

Philadelphia’s Children First Fund [Charitybuzz]

STARR Restaurants Launches School Fundraising Initiative

support-our-schools-starrToday, Stephen Starr and STARR Restaurants launched a “Support Our Schools” fundraising and awareness effort with The School District of Philadelphia. The month-long initiative will request that patrons to all of Starr’s Philadelphia restaurants to add a donation to the schools, right onto their checks.

Starr says “the School District’s needs are at historical proportions, we simply can’t turn our backs on it and wait for others to try to fix it; we all have to do our part.”

Areas that will benefit »

Stephen Starr and Fatty Crab Teaming Up for Worldwide Expansion


Crain’s New York Business breaks the story that Stephen Starr has signed a deal with to take New York’s Fatty Crab concept into eight US cities as well as London. Fatty Crab currently has three locations worldwide (New York, Hong Kong, US Virgin Islands) that serve up their take on Southeast Asian cuisine including items like quail egg shooters, pork and beef sliders, watermelon pickle and crispy pork plus crab in chili sauce.

The first collaboration will open in Washington DC in the next three to six months. Starr confirms to the Inquirer’s Michael Klein, that one of the US locations will indeed be in Philadelphia.

To facilitate the expansion process, the team is looking to open in existing restaurant spaces. So let the speculation begin.

Fatty Crab lands big partner [Crain's]
Fatty Crew [Official Site]
Starr Restaurants [Official Site]


First Look Inside Serpico


Work has been going late into the night at Serpico on South Street. Last night the lights were on and the layout was revealed.

Iron Hill Re-evaluating Ardmore


Check out the week’s most interesting posts on Philadelphia magazine’s real estate blog, Property. Iron Hill is “re-evaluating its involvement in Ardmore and editor Liz Spikol imagines a world where Questlove and Stephen Starr bring Hybird to South Street.

Follow Property on Facebook and Twitter.

Where We’re Eating: El Vez May Be the Most Fun Restaurant in Town

El Vez 2

Because I was tired of hearing overeducated food types in Philadelphia talk a ton of smack about Stephen Starr’s always-packed Mexican joint El Vez, I decided to put the restaurant to the test with a demanding Saturday-night birthday party 10-top, including some fussy suburban eaters and one each of the picky-eater and vegetarian species. We ordered beers. We ordered margaritas. We ordered a wide range of food. And we dropped $40-plus in the photo booth, where, yes, my shirt came off. (Pictures available upon request.) Not a bad plate or drink was served. The server didn’t stumble once. And we made it out the door for under $40 per person. You can hate all you want, haters, but the fact is, El Vez may be the most fun restaurant in town.

El Vez
121 South 13th Street

First appeared in the April 2013 edition of Philadelphia magazine

HyBird, Questlove’s Food Concept Opening in New York with Stephen Starr


Philadelphia’s Questlove and Stephen Starr are joining forces to open Hybird, a fried chicken, dumplings and cupcakes stand in New York’s Chelsea Market. Look for the kiosk to open in early May.

Questlove has been toying with starting a food operation for a couple of years now, having fed drumsticks to gleeful Feastival eaters and Night Market VIPs. But now there’s something concrete and we have to wonder, can a Philadelphia location be far behind?

We hope not.

Hybird [Official Site]

Is HipCityVeg Coming to Midtown Village?


Real Estate honcho, Allan Domb has his name on the liquor license that has popped up on the “Thirteen Street Bistro” (the fake name the landlord gave the former Full Moon Saloon). Domb’s name appears on more liquor licenses connected to Stephen Starr than Starr himself, but Michael Klein says he hears Starr is not involved in this project. Instead, Klein says that Nicole Marquis of HipCityVeg is considering the space.

Domb, who owns the bricks of HipCityVeg’s first location can’t say enough good things about Marquis and lets us know she’s considering 13th Street but stops short of confirming she’ll be doing HipCityVeg or another concept at 131 South 13th Street.

Interestingly, Nicole Marquis’ name was attached to neighborhood discussions for another project that had Allan Domb on the liquor license. That project wound up being Starr’s Fette Sau. And the other name on the 13th Street liquor license is Tom Jackson, a common enough name but also the general manager of El Vez.

So is 131 S 13th Street going to be a new Marquis vegetarian friendly concept with liquor license or something else altogether? Marquis says she’ll let us know as things develop.

Photo by Arthur Etchells

Stephen Starr Talks His New D.C. French Restaurant Le Diplomate


Later this month, Stephen Starr will open Le Diplomate, a 260-seat, 7,500-square-foot French restaurant in Washington D.C.’s Logan Circle neighborhood, exactly a mile north of the White House. Starr has been itching to make the move to D.C. ever since he first opened the Continental here in Philadelphia so many years ago. “I’m fascinated by politics,” Starr told the Washington Post. Read more »

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