Demonstrating how the vintage corrugated roofing material will be repurposed as siding for our East Kensington storefront project.Read More
Yesterday I stopped in to tour our latest hospitality project, the restaurant Fourth & Cross. Opening day is drawing near, and it was time to check out the progress. There are many neat details from owner/builder/chef Andrew Michaels, who used a lot of salvaged material for the finishes, in keeping with the Farm to Table concept. Look for Michael Klein's Inquirer column next weekend for more details. Pennsport is a virtual food desert, and locals are anxiously awaiting opening day.
Expert builder Drew Miller (Fork, Vietnam, Teikoku etc.) and I checked out the Navy Yard's latest dining destination, Lo Spiedo. Lunch was packed--managers said they did over 200 covers in the 120 seat space. We both liked the clean industrial/vintage design that showcases the historic bones of the building.
Our meal was on the expensive side, but the four Bloody Mary's were partly to blame (they were excellent). The wings were rumored to be really good, but were just average IMHO. My Chinese wife makes better wings with a secret soy and garlic based sauce, but that's a subject for another post. The brisket sandwich had a nice smoky flavor, but I wasn't in love with it--and I really wanted to be, given Vetri's reputation and all the media buzz.
Service was attentive, but not intrusive. Kudos to the staff for NOT circling back to ask how the food was--so few restaurants understand how wrong that is. Service staff is not supposed to put guests on the spot like that, they are supposed to notice if something is amiss and fix it.
Would we go back? Sure, but I'll wait for warmer weather so we can sit outside and gaze at the old battleships across the street. http://lo-spiedo.com
The food at Bibou is stellar I am told. It would be great to have the opportunity to re-design the dining room and facade. I stopped by to help my builder friend Drew Miller with some ideas. He recently updated the kitchen and was asked by the owners to help them renovate front of house. No hospitality designer will be involved. The plan is to create a corridor off the entry, in order to reduce cold drafts in the winter. This will make the small dining room smaller. The first order of business should be the removal of the low slung acoustic ceiling, which lowers the ceiling by at least 18." There is a direct correlation between ceiling height and how close people feel comfortable sitting or standing near each other. The higher the ceiling, the more personal space one has, or feels that they have. We had a nice chat with the chef, and enjoyed a couple of slices of freshly baked bread.