El Cafe Opens in Rittenhouse With Breakfast Tacos, Mexican Pastries and Horchata Lattes

The crew behind Suraya and Pizzeria Beddia in Fishtown has initiated Phase 1 of their first Rittenhouse restaurant project in the Pod Philly hotel.

El Cafe interior | Photo by Katherine Lundberg

Phase 1 of Defined Hospitality’s (Suraya, Pizzeria Beddia, R&D) foray into Rittenhouse is in full effect. El Cafe, their ground floor Mexican cafe in the new Pod Philly hotel, is now open at 31 South 19th Street.

Chef and co-owner Nick Kennedy, chef de cuisines Alberto Sandoval and Jerome Skaggs, and pastry chefs James Matty (a James Beard nom) and Michal Shelkowitz, put together a small menu of cakes, conchas (vanilla; apple almond and tamarind; guava, coconut and cheese), freshly milled dipping chocolate (by local Éclat), plus breakfast tacos on house-nixtamalized heirloom masa. Like at Suraya, they’re going with Stumptown coffee drinks as well as selection of aguas frescas, jasmine rice horchata, horchata lattes and chocolate atole. 

Hours are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Phase 2, of course, is Condesa, the much anticipated Mexico City inspired restaurant. It’s scheduled to open next week. And Phase 3 is El Techo, a rooftop taqueria and bar that will open in mid-October.

Luckily this is Philly, so mid-October is still, potentially, outdoor rooftop weather. That being said, even if it’s not, there’s a retractable roof to keep us warm.

El Cafe’s interior | Photo by Katherine Lundberg

El Cafe’s interior | Photo by Katherine Lundberg

El Cafe’s pastries | Photo by Katherine Lundberg