1537 S. 11th St. (at Tasker and East Passyunk)
Philadelphia , PA 19147
Neighborhood: East Passyunk
Parking: Valet parking on the Passyunk Avenue side of the Singing Fountain on Friday and Saturday costs $8.
Handicap access: Wheelchair accessible on Tasker Street entrance.
Related reviews: Fond* Fond built on good ingredients with spot-on French approach
Cuisine type: American; French
Meals Served: Lunch - Sun. Dinner - Tue., Wed., Thu., Fri., Sat., Sun.
Style: Little Fond is growing up as chef Lee Styer; his pastry chef-wife, Jessie Prawlucki; and charming host Tory Keomanivong move from their tiny BYO box to an airy corner space nearby with a liquor license beside the Singing Fountain. The sophisticated cooking, fine desserts, and service benefit from the added comfort. The starter bar has some nice affordable wines but still needs polish with cocktails. And bottle-bringers shouldn’t feel jilted: BYO is still free during the week.
Specialties: Tuna crudo; lobster risotto; squash soup with curried crab; scallop terrine; foie gras with spiced cream cheese; branzino; swordfish; pork belly; malted milk chocolate ice cream with peanut brittle; saffron apple tart; sorbets; Meyer lemon cannolis.
Alcohol: The little bar’s best assets are a focused list of well-chosen, affordable wines by the glass, perfect for the Euro-inspired menu, from a crisp Raimat Albarino to a Spanish monastrell blend from Altos de Cuco. A small reserve list has some great wines, but a reasonable BYO policy (free weekdays, $10 corkage per bottle weekends) makes sense for splurge wines. The cocktails still need more finesse, and the small craft beer list should also grow.
Weekend noise: The room hits a buzzy 89 decibels but is serene compared to Fond’s cramped old noise-box space. (Ideal is 75 decibels or less.)
Hours: Dinner Tuesday-Friday, 5:30-10 p.m.; Saturday, 5-10 p.m. Closed Sunday and Monday.