Parker's Prime, a steak house with Asian flourish

Win and Sutida Somboonsong, fresh off last month's opening of Azie on Main in Villanova, expect to roll out Parker's Prime steak house next week.

Like all of the couple's restaurants, Parker's Prime (4755 West Chester Pike, Newtown Square, 610-353-5353) has an Asian sensibility.

That is, while chef Takao Iinuma's menu is built around American-style steaks (filet, rib-eye, New York strip), some sides and sauces borrow from Japanese cuisine, such as the ginger sesame sauce on the asparagus. Before joining the Somboonsongs several restaurants ago, Iinuma was chef at Morimoto.

There's also a full sushi menu and Asian appetizers, such as kobe carpaccio, rock-shrimp tempura, and steak-house staples such as truffle fries, Caprese salad, and garlic mashed potatoes. (No creamed spinach on the draft menu I saw, though.)

Dinner entree prices run from $24 for chicken and tuna to $55 for two of the steaks.

Modern, open layout at the former Roux 3 includes a semiprivate, semicircular booth.

Besides Azie on Main, the Somboonsongs' Win Signature Restaurants include Thai Pepper and the adjacent Mikado in Ardmore, Flavor in Wayne, Teikoku down the road in Newtown Square, and Azie in Media.

 

What's coming

Clark Gilbert, last at Taquet after stops at the Fountain at the Four Seasons, the Saloon, and La Terrasse, is about a week from opening Gemelli, a BYOB at 232 Woodbine Ave. in Narberth, which last was Margot. (Owner Margot McGinley told me she closed her three-year-old bistro last month as the birth of her third baby approached.) Gilbert says Gemelli will be a dinner-only neighborhood place; menu will be Italian-American with "French sensibility" - simple, straightforward - and, as he stresses, value. He wants the check to be about $30 per person, and he'll offer a five-course tasting menu for $40. Meredith Merlini, who worked with Gilbert at Mio Pomodoro, will run the front of the house.

The West Philly BYOB Marigold Kitchen (501 S. 45th St., 215-222-6751) will reopen Wednesday under new chef-owner Robert Halpern, melding classic French and ambitious, imaginative postmodern techniques. See the menu at www.marigoldkitchenbyob.com; appetizers are $8 to $12 and entrees are $18 to the low-20s, plus a $27 rib-eye. There's a five-course tasting menu for $55 and a nine-course chef's tasting for $95. It's open for dinner Tuesdays through Sundays. Marigold's previous crew is preparing Percy Street Barbecue at 900 South St. for late October or early November.

 

What's new

Munish Narula, whose Indian restaurant/delivery operation Tiffin is expanding far beyond its roots at 710 W. Girard Ave. on the western edge of Northern Liberties, has gone into the Indian pizza business next door. At Tiffin etc. (712 W. Girard Ave., 215-925-0770), chef Hari Nayak does Indian street food: parathas (stuffed, pan-fried whole-wheat flatbreads, served with boondi raita, a yogurt sauce), kati rolls (wraps), and Indian pizzas. The meats are prepared in the tandoor. Its hours coincide with Tiffin's: 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.

 

Changeovers

Loie (128 S. 19th St.) has closed, as expected, to make way for Zama, a Japanese restaurant from Pod founding chef Hiroyuki "Zama" Tanaka; it's expected to open this fall.

Carambola in Dresher closed for good after dinner Saturday after 12 years. Owner Danny Nejberger said the beginning of the end was last summer, when rising gas prices shrank his customer base and commodity prices rose. The slumping economy led to layoffs at the nearby business parks, he said, and the lunch trade fell 40 percent.

 

Briefly noted

Stella Pizza is the name of Stephen Starr's pizzeria coming to the old Cosi at Second and Lombard Streets in Society Hill. Opening is down for October.

Positano Coast by Aldo Lamberti at Second and Walnut Streets, across from the Ritz Five, will honor gift certificates from Oceanaire of Philadelphia and Old Original Bookbinder's at full face value, up to $100.

 


Contact columnist Michael Klein at 215-854-5514 or mklein@phillynews.com. See real-time restaurant info and menus at http://go.philly.com/insider.