501 Fairmount Ave.
Philadelphia , PA 19123
Neighborhood: Northern Liberties
Parking: Street parking only.
Handicap access: Wheelchair accessible.
Related reviews: Popolino
Cuisine type: Italian
Style: Gregarious chef Peter McAndrews' rapid expansion of trattoria concepts has produced a Roman-themed BYOB for Northern Liberties, where a vast "tavola calda" display of seasonal antipasti salads, welcoming service, and an appealing corner room set the scene for a menu of adventurous offal and bold flavors. The $40 four-course option is a good value, but the two-fisted cooking is so inconsistent and lacking finesse that it appears McAndrews' empire-building ambitions have exceeded his quality-control reach.
Specialties: Tavola calda; azzurro affumicato; calamari fritti; nervetti (calves' foot pate); spaghetti carbonara; spaghetti with clams; sweetbread tortelloni; lamb shank crepinette; stuffed pork chop; grilled pound cake; cheese cake. $15-$24. Four-course "turista" menu, $40.
Alcohol: BYOB. Bring a big Italian red to match the bold flavors.
Weekend noise: A lively 83 decibels, but never full enough for an accurate measure. (Ideal is 75 decibels or less.
Hours: Lunch 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Wednesday through Monday. Dinner 5-10 p.m. Wednesday through Monday. Closed Tuesdays.