Thursday, July 24, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

POSTED: Wednesday, July 23, 2014, 12:30 PM
Barbecue surveyor Johnny Fugitt, in mid-gnaw. He says he found "meat candy" in the form of smoked bacon at Jimmy's in Malvern.

This sounds like a wonderful detour in life:

Johnny Fugitt was a house manager of one of the Ronald McDonald Houses in St. Louis. On his way to a relocation in the Washington, D.C., area, his love of barbecue got the best of him.

More specifically, he wanted to find a resource spelling out the best barbecue in America.

POSTED: Tuesday, July 22, 2014, 11:39 PM
Kevin Sbraga's Sbraga will offer a Jersey shore-theme menu for the debut Culinary Collective. (MICHAEL KLEIN /

If you're bored with the notion of "restaurant weeks" and their fixed-priced offerings, what Rittenhouse Row has planned for four nights in early August sounds truly extraordinary.

The business group, through chef Kevin Sbraga and Starr Restaurants' Danielle DelRe, has signed on 18 restaurants so far to host special dining events Aug. 4-7.

The Culinary Collective, as this new promo is billed, includes a few one-nighters as well as special menus that will run the four nights.

POSTED: Tuesday, July 22, 2014, 2:36 PM
Tria will take the former Dmitri's at 23d and Pine Streets, photographed last winter (hence the snow on the ground). (

I can answer the question, "What's going into the former Dmitri's at 23d and Pine Streets?"

It's Tria, the popular wine/cheese/beer-rooted bar.

Partner Jon Myerow tells me that it will be a Tria Cafe with a full kitchen.

POSTED: Tuesday, July 22, 2014, 2:06 AM
Susanna Foo is developing a restaurant called Suga at 1720 Sansom St. Her former restaurant was at 1512 Walnut St., now a Chipotle at Walnut and Sydenham Streets.

If you're looking for new-dining activity, Rittenhouse Square will never disappoint.

I'll start with the return of Susanna Foo to Center City. A month ago, I reported that the doyenne of Asian cuisine was wokking on a deal in Rittenhouse, which she left in 2009 after she sold her landmark building on Walnut Street. But she declined to ID the location.

Now, public records point to 1720 Sansom St., the long-shuttered, former home of Genji and briefly Kingyo, across from the Sofitel.  It's less than three blocks from her old restaurant.

POSTED: Monday, July 21, 2014, 3:41 PM

The Yachtsman - Philly's first tiki bar in recent memory* - is two to three weeks away at 1444 Frankford Ave. in Fishtown.

PYT and Emmanuelle's Tommy Up says he and Sarah Brown are going for '70s rec room kitsch in redoing the former Grady O's.

Designers Chris Thomas and Greg Charnock, who worked on the nearby Pizza Brain and Danger Salon, joined the project a month or so ago, and are working with artists including Pedro Ospina (who fashioned a Moai-like head out of the plastic bed of a truck) and Nick Bader.

POSTED: Monday, July 21, 2014, 11:04 AM

Coffee-infused barbecue sauce! Crab salad! Mung bean sprouts!

What can you put on a hot dog besides mustard, onions, relish or ketchup to make it utterly tasty?

It's not an overstatement to suggest that the wurst place to be in Philadelphia on Saturday, July 19 was the Shambles at Headhouse Square, where a few dozen chefs, food truckers and amateur cooks threw down at the third annual Dog Day of Summer Cook-Off, sponsored by South Street Headhouse District.

POSTED: Sunday, July 20, 2014, 4:17 PM
The Farmers' Cabinet at 1111-13 Walnut St. (MICHAEL KLEIN /

There's been all this serious talk lately about bar owner Matt Swartz - what with that new million-dollar lawsuit that he faces over unpaid rent and other debts at the now-shuttered Farmers' Cabinet, the latest chapter in a tale of woe that began shortly after he rolled into Philadelphia from Lehigh County in 2010.

At least someone wants to have fun now.

Michael Naessens, who owns Old City's Bierstube, had the good fortune to hire Brody Smythe recently.

POSTED: Friday, July 18, 2014, 3:44 PM

Mexican restaurants pop up with regularity nowadays in the Italian Market.

Most are humble taquerias. Nothing wrong with that.

But a few weeks ago came a spot called Blue Corn (940 S. Ninth St., 215-925-1010), replacing the short-lived Torero Tapas Bar, which moved to Delaware County

About this blog
Michael Klein, the editor/producer of, 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

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