Philly may be getting a branch of Max Brenner, Chocolate by the Bald Man -- a chocolate-themed restaurant chain -- at 212 S. 15th St. (15th Street just south of Walnut), in the storefront that last was West Coast Video. The deal was speculated this morning on the blog Foobooz, based on a liquor application posted Thursday on the front door.
My real estate source confirms that the "Max Brenner" on the liquor app and the multinational company (with units in NYC, Australia, the Philippines, Singapore and Israel) are one and the same, but cautions that it's not a fully signed deal. The building owner must apply for change-of-use permitting, a process that could take 60 days.
A Max Brenner rep told me the plan is for a retail store/restaurant, to open in late spring or early summer 2009.
On a hometown note, the second Naked Chocolate Cafe -- a sibling of the original at 1317 Walnut -- is due to open "sometime between Oct. 20 and 31" at 34th and Walnut Streets on the Penn campus. A third Naked Chocolate is due by the end of the year at 31 S. 18th St., at The Hub in the United Plaza Building.