UPDATED: Avance to Close Saturday
Avance, the successor to Le Bec Fin, will close after service on Saturday night, October 11th. Michael Klein reported that the Walnut Street restaurant is a victim of economics. Chef Justin Bogle, who opened Avance ten months ago with high hopes, said, ” we can’t continue operating at this pace.”
In it’s time, Avance has suffered from lackluster reviews, the sale of the building by Georges Perrier and an eviction notice from new owners, Pearl Properties. Pearl Properties is the landlord for several restaurants including Pizzeria Vetri and the Chipotle that replaced Susanna Foo, but with the recent resurgence in Center City retail, the space has probably seen its last restaurant client.
As for Bogle, a Philadelphia native who returned home from New York as the youngest chef to earn two Michelin stars, he has no immediate plans.
UPDATE: Just got the first official release from Justin Bogle and the Avance PR team. And while it basically sticks to the story that everyone is now reporting (ridiculously high expenses + NOT ridiculously high customer counts = sad trombone noise), it does throw a little more light on things and includes another quote from Bogle. Here’s the nut of it:
The modern concept did not work in the location as the team had hoped and the property was up against many growing expenses. Although chef Just Bogle’s cuisine got great reviews from national press and had a loyal clientele of diners, the restaurant could not withstand the financial pressures put upon it.
“We regret that we had to make this decision, but the numbers weren’t working out. I truly put my heart and soul into this place and wish the outcome was different. Avance has a great team of professional servers, managers, chefs and a sommelier. Everyone at Avance helped to make it the place it was,” said Justin Bogle, chef-owner.
Also, if you’re thinking about dropping in on Avance to say farewell during its last couple nights, there are still prime reservations available straight through Saturday night’s final service. Though, considering the fact that this may very well be your last chance ever to eat dinner at 1523 Walnut Street, I’m guessing both curiosity and nostalgia might make those reservations go fast.