This past Tuesday, South Philly’s long-in-the-making Spanish wine bar and restaurant, Barcelona, ever-so-quietly opened its doors at 1709 East Passyunk Avenue — the old Man’s Image space at the intersection of 12th and Morris Streets.
Frankford Avenue’s Fishtown Social is now open. The wine bar from Fishtown local, Vanessa Wong closely follows the Tria model of wine, beer, cheese and meat. Fishtown Social does however also offers cocktails.
The wines (8 white, 2 sparkling and 11 red) range from $8 to $15 a glass, beers are categorized as light, dark, hoppy and seasonal. The cheese and meats are priced at $7 a portion, three for $18.
The wine bar is open Tuesday through Thursday, from 4 p.m. to late night and from noon to late night on Fridays and Saturdays.
Last May Nick Elmi went to work on securing a liquor license and expanding into the former coffee shop that is next door to his Laurel. The initial plan was to add some seating and install a bar. But here we are more than seven months later and that hasn’t happened.
So when we caught up with Elmi at Philly Cooks, we asked him what was up. Elmi, whose Laurel has been named the top restaurant in the city for the past two years, has decided not to mess up the good thing he has going at Laurel. So Laurel remains BYOB though he does now offer a $60 wine pairing for those interested.
It was a surprise to many when Chris Painter closed his semi-eponymous restaurant off of Rittenhouse Square. Luckily for fans of his cooking, he won’t be out of the kitchen for long. Painter has signed on as a partner with Method Hospitality, an offshoot of the ROOST Apartment Hotel brand that’s been founded by Randall Cook and real estate developer, David Grasso. ROOST hotels feature apartment like settings for extended stay guests. Catering to contract workers, the recently separated and others who may find themselves looking for a modern, attractive and fully furnished apartment. Where Painter comes in is in creating comfortable food concepts that fit with ROOST’s brand. Cook wants the first floor retail spaces of his hotels, including the just opened ROOST at 1831 Chestnut Street, to be enhance the hotel experience.
Maybe you think you know Frankford Avenue. You’ve met friends for table tennis, jenga and liters of German beer at Stephen Starr’s Frankford Hall. You’ve gotten the high score on Asteroids at Barcade. Maybe even checked out the pizza and pizza museum that is Pizza Brain. But even 12 years after William Reed took over Johnny Brenda’s and made it the Avenue’s shining welcome beacon, the best days for the corridor are still ahead of it.
Our field guide takes you on an eating and drinking tour of the rest of the best on the food mecca that is the Frankford Avenue — a full day’s worth of delicious debauchery.
Tonight, the owners of Zavino in Midtown Village and University City debut the opening of another restaurant right across the street.
Greg Dodge of Zavino Hospitality Group introduces Tredici Enoteca at 13th and Sansom Streets, across from its sister restaurant. The Enoteca, which means “wine repository,” will serve Mediterranean-style cuisine with a focus on an affordable and diverse Italian wine bar.
The drink selection provides premium wines by the bottle, glass, or through the cruvient, a six-bottle preserving system at the bar. Similar to a draft system, the wines will be kept fresh, temperature controlled and served by the glass.
Fishtown is getting another new business. Fishtown Social has received the go-ahead from the Zoning Board and should be able to begin refurbishing the corner bar at the Frankford and Oxford, turning the building into a wine bar for the neighborhood.
According to Naked Philly, which was at the zoning hearing, the bar will offer draft wine, beer, and small plates with the familiar focus on local products. No timeline yet for the opening of Fishtown Social, which will have large new windows and outdoor seating.
Two Corners Occupied, Another Will be Soon on Frankford Ave [Naked Philly]
Fishtown Social [Foobooz]
Tria’s Fitler Square location opens this week (exact day to be determined) at 23rd and Pine Streets, the former home of Dmitri’s. Although very similar to the other two Tria locations, this fermentables (beer, cheese, wine) bar will also feature a full kitchen, giving new executive chef, Karen Nicolas some more toys to play with. Nicolas comes with serious culinary chops, she was named one of Food & Wine magazine’s Best New Chefs 2012. Nicolas will oversee culinary operations for all four Tria locations. TheJohnson & Wales Culinary Arts alum was formerly executive chef at Citron & Rose and has worked at New York’s Gramercy Tavern, and apprenticed at the likes of California’s The French Laundry and Cowgirl Creamery in San Francisco.
Wednesday September 19th from 4 p.m. to midnight Vintage Wine Bar and Bistro will be holding a Burgers and Bubbly event to help choose the next Vintage burger. Throughout the night Vintage will be serving up a trio of sliders for $10. Those who try the sliders will have the opportunity to vote which of the three was their favorite and whichever receives the most votes at the end of the night will be the new Vintage burger. The toppings are top secret for now, but they will be beef burgers. The bubbly part of the evening will feature the house bubbly for $4 and discounted sparkling wine flights.
Vintage [Official Site]
Brian Freedman does not enjoy his wine or dinner at the Latham Hotel’s new Urban Enoteca. And that’s putting it mildly.
Worst of all was the “rustic stew of coastal shellfish.” It arrived practically trailing cartoon odor-lines, like those wisps of smoke that followed Pepe LePew in the old Warner Bros. classics. Bland halibut, well-cooked but virtually flavorless shrimp, “Maine lobster” that was little more that the occasional shoestring of flaccid meat—all that and more came to the table in a menacing bath of unexpectedly thick tomato sauce squiggled with a Day-Glo saffron rouille whose sourness was cause for concern.
Urban Enoteca’s ‘Wine Bar’ Charges an Arm and a Leg for Even the Most Uninspired Brands [Philadelphia Weekly]
Urban Enoteca [Official Site]