Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Archive: January, 2009

POSTED: Tuesday, January 20, 2009, 9:58 AM

David Faustino, forever "Bud" Bundy of "Married ... With Children," will be here for an online chat at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday at Philly.com. Faustino stars in the Web sitcom Star-ving on Crackle.com.

Send questions now to mklein@phillynews.com.

POSTED: Monday, January 19, 2009, 12:40 PM

Attendees at a Philly-themed NFC championship game-watching party at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, were amused when Dallas Cowboys' Terrell Owens showed up.

Two attendees told me that the mercurial former Eagles wide receiver made negative comments every time QB Donovan McNabb had the ball and was, overall, not very nice as he ate the food. A guest kept trying to give TO one of the Eagles hats that had been given out to the crowd, but he wouldn't wear one.

POSTED: Saturday, January 17, 2009, 9:23 AM
Filed Under: TableTalk

George Anni and R. Evan Turney's takeover of Azul Cantina at 10th and Spruce Streets is proceeding. It'll be transformed into a pub.

Change is coming slowly. Turney, the chef, is revamping the menu, starting at Center City Restaurant Week, which runs Jan. 25-30. Turney tweaked several items from the existing menu, and added all three of the third-course options – the tilapia, roasted chicken and flank steak.

See the Restaurant Week menu here.

POSTED: Saturday, January 17, 2009, 9:03 AM
Filed Under: TableTalk

Alison at Blue Bell, which shut down in September as chef-owner Alison Barshak devoted her time to building her new place (Alison two in Fort Washington), will reopen Feb. 5.

In an e-mail to customers, she wrote: "You’re not the only ones chomping at the bit for the first restaurant to re-open. Chef Anthony Bonett is dying to get back into the kitchen. During his three months working the front of the house at A2, he’s been dreaming about what he’ll do at Alison at Blue Bell. The menu at Alison at Blue Bell will reflect his Italian heritage, focusing on Mediterranean fare including housemade pasta. One of my favorite appetizers on the new menu is the Spanish Octopus, Potato, Chili Peppers, Scallion, Smoked Paprika Aioli. Many of you will be happy to hear that we’re bringing back the Brussels Sprouts! Entrees include Pork Chop Milanese, Mozzarella & Arugula Salad; Shellfish Risotto, Toasted Almonds, Citrus; and Rock Shrimp with Potato & Goat Cheese Ravioli. We envision a more casual atmosphere with dishes ranging from $5 to $22. Cash only. Alison at Blue Bell will be open for dinner only on Thursday, Friday & Saturday nights."

POSTED: Friday, January 16, 2009, 5:27 AM
Filed Under: TableTalk

Real estate insiders have received a fairly detailed solicitation about Patou, chef Patrice Rames' French-Mediterranean restaurant-lounge in Old City. (See details here or here.)

No price is attached, but I've seen listings in which the asking was $3.4 million for the whole shebang, including a four-story building.

Patou, which opened in December 2003, is very much still in business. Manager Mark Hoyt told me that the property has been sale for a year now. "It's not a fire sale. Patrice will sell if someone meets his price," he said. "So far, no one has. Given the climate, I don't think anything will happen anytime soon."

POSTED: Thursday, January 15, 2009, 4:06 PM
Filed Under: TableTalk

Justin Hoke, last at the Georges Perrier-Chris Scarduzio joint Table 31 after three years at Le Bec-Fin, has joined Kite & Key Tavern (1826 Callowhill St. in Franklintown). Hoke said he left T31, seeking a better opportunity.

Logic dictates that as pricer restaurants tighten payrolls, their chefs will seek employment farther down the food chain -- a boon to the gastropub crowd. The gastropubs seem to be weathering this economic crisis better than the fine-dining houses (expense accounts are down) and the midrange BYOBs (which can't sell alcohol to offset higher food prices).

Hoke says he'll "keep it simple and fun." Also new in his kitchen, as sous/pastry, is Dennis Crowley, last at the Water Works.

POSTED: Thursday, January 15, 2009, 1:35 PM

A going-out-of-business sign just went up on the northeast corner of Third and Market Streets in Old City, home for 48 years of Shirt Corner, the discount haberdasher with a garish, American flag-style-billboard facade.

It's one of the last of the old-time dry-goods retailers on the stretch of Market Street between Front and Fifth, now dominated by restaurants, clubs and electronics stores. "We are the neighborhood," said owner Marvin Ginsberg, who said he was leaving because he's 77 years old and not because of the economy.

Ginsberg said he was selling off inventory and had no firm date for closing. He said he'd eventually sell the building.

POSTED: Thursday, January 15, 2009, 12:01 PM
Filed Under: TableTalk
The White Dog Cafe (Bonnie Weller)

When the White Dog Cafe reopens -- perhaps as soon as Friday at dinner -- here is the bill of fare.

Ralph Fernandez, corporate executive chef for new owner Marty Grims' company, has written the menus and oversees the food service. His chef de cuisine, Eric Yost, who will handle the day-to-day operation of the kitchen, is from Grims' Plantation in Long Beach Island; before that, he was in Las Vegas and Naples, Florida. They will maintain White Dog founder Judy Wicks’ sustainability principles and work with many farmers for locally grown produce and products. (Wicks has always been a champion of the underdog, prompting one wag to wonder to me if she'd host a benefit for the two dozen kitchen staffers who were let go in the management changeover...)

The White Dog is at 3420 Sansom St. Grims is planning a second location in Wayne.

About this blog
Michael Klein, the editor/producer of philly.com/Food, writes about the local restaurant scene in his Inquirer column "Table Talk." Have a question? Email it! See his Inquirer work here. Reach Michael at mklein@philly.com.

Michael Klein Philly.com
Latest Videos:
Also on Philly.com
Stay Connected