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Inquirer Daily News

Archive: January, 2010

POSTED: Saturday, January 23, 2010, 9:12 AM

Something like 2,000 people showed up at McFadden's on Third Street near Callowhill late Friday night for an appearance by Ronnie Magro and Sammi "Sweetheart" Giancola from MTV's Jersey Shore, which wrapped its first season Thursday.

Fist-pumps all around.

POSTED: Friday, January 22, 2010, 2:54 PM

A "brewpub" coming to Liberty Place's food court? Not so. Insiders say that the only alcohol-based tenant negotiating a lease is Vintage Irving, the NYC wine bar I told you about last week.

Stephen Starr says he is backing away from the name "Mexico City" for his Mexican concept coming to 2013 Chestnut St.  and is casting about for something different. 

Starr also says the beer-garden project that he's planning across from Johnny Brenda's at Frankford and Girard will be outdoor-only in its first summer. Plans were rumored earlier this week on the blog Phoodie.info. Starr also told me that the name is not "Bier Garten." 

POSTED: Friday, January 22, 2010, 12:55 PM
Filed Under: TableTalk

Chef Jim LoCascio has given notice at Barclay Prime, as the Grubstreet blog noted this morning, and his last night will be Feb. 9.

His next batch of patrons will be his family: "Five restaurants in eight years [in Philadelphia] is a lot of work," LoCascio told me, adding that he wants to coach spring baseball and spend time with his wife and sons (ages 7 and 5) and baby daughter (19 months). He said he'd work for his father-in-law's construction company before he plots his next move. 

Barclay Prime is looking for his replacement.

POSTED: Friday, January 22, 2010, 11:48 AM

Andie Summers will get yet another male on-air partner shortly on country WXTU (92.5), as her co-host of less than a year, Kris Stevens, was offered part-time status yesterday, though I hear he's not happy about that and may leave.

Stevens had been the afternooner before his promotion last spring, when the station sent Summers' longtime mic mate Scott Evans packing.

(Does this sound like a country song or what?)

POSTED: Friday, January 22, 2010, 11:14 AM
Filed Under: TableTalk

Ten restaurants have donated a $100 gift certificates, which are being auctioned on eBay, with proceeds to be donated to the Red Cross for Haiti Relief and Development.

The roster, assembled by restaurant publicist Dallyn Pavey:

  • Restaurant Alba
  • Bistro St Tropez
  • Dettera
  • Fork
  • Friday Saturday Sunday
  • Gypsy Saloon 
  • Garces Restaurant Group (Amanda, Chifa, Distrito, Tinto, Village Whiskey) 
  • Ruth's Chris Steak House
  • Savona 
  • Stella Blu 
  • Union Trust Steak House

Auctions run through Tuesday, January 26 at 4 p.m. Click here.

POSTED: Friday, January 22, 2010, 10:59 AM
Filed Under: TableTalk Openings

Here's first word on an Indian restaurant operator who's planning locations on the Temple University campus and at 1628 Sansom St., which was Remedy Tea Bar.

Philadelphia Chutney Co. wants to keep a low profile, for now.

Most I can glean from the owner is that it will put a "nouveau American twist" on organic Southern Indian cuisine. No timeline has been released.

POSTED: Thursday, January 21, 2010, 5:01 PM
Extremely primitive photo illustration / The Insider

For nearly a quarter-century until it closed last June, Susanna Foo Chinese Cuisine was one of the landmarks of Philadelphia's Restaurant Row, occupying the brownstone at Walnut and Sydenham Streets.

Foo sold 1512 Walnut to a partnership that intends to redevelop the property.

The building's upper floors are being fashioned into apartments, but I can report exclusively that the prospective new tenant for the ground floor is Chipotle Mexican Grill, a growing quick-serve concept.

POSTED: Thursday, January 21, 2010, 2:32 PM
Filed Under: TableTalk Openings

The east end of South Street is about to get a taste of the Old West.

Black Angus, positioning itself as a modest-priced steakhouse-cum-jazz club, is awaiting its liquor license to open at 117-119 South St., the ornately high-ceilinged former home of Tori's Brickhouse and Mallorca. So mid-February, maybe?

Manager Paul Goss explains that owner Lawrence Gilliam has horses and likes the western thang, hence a decor based on cowboy lore. There's also an adjacent wine bar, and in the back, another nod to Gilliam's interests: a full-size club with stage for jazz shows.

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.

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