Sunday, April 25, 2010

Stephen Starr: Philadelphia's Restaurant Scene Developing At Lightening Speed

el rey logo philadelphiaKYW's Hadas Kuznits sat down and talked with Stephen Starr at El Rey during preparation for its opening and, among other things, asked what he thought about Philadelphia's restaurant growth.

He had this to say:
I think Philadelphia is developing for restaurants at lightening speed. They're popping up everywhere... everywhere you can imagine: South Philly, Fishtown, Northern Liberties, Old City, here [Rittenhouse Square], I mean it's great. There's a giant boom going on in restaurants.
An assessment like that from Starr is good for Philadelphia.

Appropriately, El Rey and the Ranstead Room open today.

Stephen Starr Opens 70's Style Mexican Diner in Center City [ KYW 1060 ]
El Rey [ Official Site ]

Big Guns: Stephen Starr Teaming Up With Sasha Petraske Of NYC's Milk & Honey To Develop Cocktail Program For The Forthcoming El Rey "Speakeasy" Annex

Monday, April 19, 2010

Team Starr Checks In To Remind Us That Many Of Their Establishments Have Outdoor Dining

starr restaurants outdoor dining ad
That may be so, but what's the story with Starr's beer garden?

It was going to be the crucial addition of the summer — not to mention the year — and now it won't open until the fall??

Totally dropping the ball on that one, Steve-o.

The Starr bier garten on Frankford Avenue won't open until after the summer [ Grub Street Philadelphia ]

Stephen Starr To Jose Garces: I'll See Your Beer & Brats Concept And Raise You A Bona Fide German Bier Garten

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Stephen Starr Scheduled To Open El Rey This Weekend

starr el rey exterior
Open 14 hours, not 24 | Photo via

Sunday, April 25th is opening day — so reports Michael Klein.

The annex speakeasy, to be called the Ranstead Room, looks to be along for the ride.

Restaurant Notes [ The Insider - ]
Starr's Sneak Peek Photos of El Rey [ Grub Street Philadelphia ]

Big Guns: Stephen Starr Teaming Up With Sasha Petraske Of NYC's Milk & Honey To Develop Cocktail Program For The Forthcoming El Rey "Speakeasy" Annex

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Stephen Starr Reportedly Thinking Rittenhouse Gastropub Again; Also There May Be A Potential Collaboration With New York's Ken Friedman In The Future

the breslin in new york city
Will a Starr Gastropub have a Friedman influence? | Photo via The Breslin

Yesterday Eater reported that Stephen Starr was having a meeting about doing a gastropub in Rittenhouse Square, something he has long been interested in doing.

Eater suggests that the location Starr is eying for said Rittenhouse gastropub is the corner of 18th and Sansom, i.e. one of the retail spaces inside 10 Rittenhouse.

While Serafina is taking one of the spaces inside the new building, maybe there's room for a second restaurant in the building's ground floor retail space?

Or maybe ARC Wheeler would dump Serafina if they strike a deal for a coveted Starr restaurant??

Or maybe, Starr is looking at another space somewhere nearby?

UPDATE: Apparently, it's the latter. Word is Starr is looking to lease the space on the northwest corner of 18th and Sansom, the space that was formerly Stiletto. So not in 10 Rittenhouse, but right across the street.

Eater also wonders if Stephen Starr would team up with New York restaurateur Ken Friedman (Spotted Pig, John Dory, The Breslin, etc.) for a gastropub project, something the two have been talking about for a while.

Friedman told Eater that they'll probably collaborate on something, but in New York not Philly.

UPDATE 2: It's on.

So there's that.

Meanwhile, Starr likes collaborations these days, so who knows.

Does Stephen Starr Want The Spotted Pig For Philly?
[ Eater New York ]

Big Guns: Stephen Starr Teaming Up With Sasha Petraske Of NYC's Milk & Honey To Develop Cocktail Program For The Forthcoming El Rey "Speakeasy" Annex
New Restaurant At 10 Rittenhouse To Be Located At Corner Of 18th And Sansom
Jose Garces Beats Stephen Starr To Rittenhouse Gastropub; Will Only Serve Craft Beer, Figuratively Decimating Every Other Bar In Rittenhouse

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Stephen Starr Reportedly Eying Two New Restaurants In University City: Pizza And Italian

stephen starr philadelphiaLately, Grub Street likes to say half seriously that "Stephen Starr [is] Opening Every Possible Type of Restaurant Everywhere, All the Time."

Well, it's starting to look like that is really the case.

Starr has a semi-ridiculous amount of restaurant projects in the works right now.

All of the following projects are currently at some stage of development:

1. El Rey (opening in April) at 20th and Chestnut.
2. El Rey's yet to be named back bar speakeasy.
3. Beer Garden in Fishtown targeting summer.
4. Pizza place next to Parc this spring.
5. Stella expansion next door.
6. Taking over the old Ansill space at 3rd and Bainbridge.
7. A hotel restaurant in Manhattan.

And now comes word of two more projects he wants to do in West Philadelphia.

The Daily Pennsylvanian spoke with Starr regarding his use of the DiningIn restaurant delivery service, and they also asked him if he was working on bringing anything new to their neck of the woods.
Starr said he is considering opening an Italian restaurant in West Philadelphia. He also plans to open two pizza shops, one in West Philadelphia and the other in Rittenhouse Square.

The Starr pizza shop would be "a traditional take out and delivery" with "real thin" and "excellent" pizza, according to Starr.

"I think it's going to be slightly revolutionary for Philly," Starr said. "It's hard to find good pizza in Philly."
If you're looking for a little insight as to what Starr is thinking about as he works on all of these new projects, Plan Philly recently asked Starr why he wanted to create a beer-focused venue (with the Fishtown beer garden).

Starr's response: "I'm always looking for something new to do. I get bored with myself."

And how.

But god bless him.

Dining in, Starr style - will now deliver food from four more Stephen Starr restaurants [ Daily Pennsylvanian ]