Sunday, July 5, 2015

Nu, Abe Fisher? The latest restaurant from Solomonov and Cook

Steve Cook and Michael Solomonov have set Tuesday, Sept. 2 for the opening of Abe Fisher, next to their new hummus spot, Dizengoff, at 1623 Sansom St. Reservations are now live at OpenTable.

Nu, Abe Fisher? The latest restaurant from Solomonov and Cook

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Steve Cook and Michael Solomonov have set Tuesday, Sept. 2 for the opening of Abe Fisher, next to their new hummus spot, Dizengoff, at 1623 Sansom St. Reservations are now live at OpenTable.

While Cook and Solomonov showcase modern Israeli cooking at Zahav in Society Hill, Abe Fisher is going for small plates of foods inspired by the Jewish diaspora - basically, everywhere outside Israel. Yes, Chinese food on Christmas.

Yehuda Sichel, a Zahav veteran who won great notices when CookNSolo were running the kosher Citron & Rose in Merion Station, is billed as co-chef with Solomonov.

The menu (here) of small plates is divided into dishes based on vegetable ($10), fish ($12) and meat ($14). The idea is to choose one item from each category, plus a dessert, to create a $39 prix-fixe. 

Just as Dizengoff makes its own pita, Abe Fisher will bake breads, such as rye and challah.

Bubbe's cooking, it's not. Opening menu includes Borscht Tartare (beets, trout roe, sour cream and onion potato chips, and hard-cooked egg); Salmon Belly Gravlax (smoked salmon hash, peppadews and capers); Sweet and Sour Meatballs (made of beef, zucchini, raisins and boursin); and Veal Schnitzel Tacos?!

They'll put out a Hungarian duck for two - a dry-aged bird served in three courses, plus dessert, for $120 for the two people. For four people, they'll do Montreal short rib - a whole beef short-rib plate with rye bread and garnishes for $160 for the table.

Desserts will include seasonal Sour Cherry Soup with pavlova and sour cherry curd; and what they're calling Black and White (a lemon and poppy cheesecake with almond cookie) and a Bacon and Egg Cream with maple custard and chocolate foam.

Beverage director Brian Kane has set up the bar with cocktails, 17 wines by the glass ($12 a throw), and bottled beers.

There's a sense of humor at work. In a riff on the pickleback, the "Abe Fisher Cocktail" mixes Beefeater 24, Dolin dry vermouth, and a kosher dill pickle). Another, cribbing a catch phrase from Monty Python, is called "Nobody Expects the Spanish Inquisition" and is built around Barbancourt 8-year rum, Pedro Ximenez sherry, Gran Marnier, and beet juice. Moor is more, apparently.

Designed by Boxwood Architects, Abe Fisher is a 50-seater plus 10-seat bar. Two kitchen counter seats will be kept open for walk-ins. The look is old-timey, especially given the black-and-white checkerboard marble floors.

Besides Abe Fisher, Dizengoff and Zahav, Cook and Solomonov also own Percy Street BBQ and Federal Donuts.

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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.

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