Thursday, Aug. 25 is opening night at Lou Bird's, the high-end, new-American bar-restaurant filling the Meritage space at 20th and Lombard Streets.

Owners/neighbors Norris and Debbie Jordan, who also own the Happy Rooster at 16th and Sansom Streets (he also owns WNJ Capital, a Center City financial-services firm), have brought in longtime Garces chef de cuisine Natalie Maronski as executive chef, and Starr alum Josh Jenkins as general manager.

Lou Bird's - the nickname of the Jordans' daughter - will feature what Norris Jordan calls "exciting, ingredient-driven" cuisine in a casual but elevated, comfortable, and elegant environment. It's low-lit, casting a sexy red glow over the proceedings.

See Maronski's dinner menu (including bar list); it is coursed out into first, seconds, and mains (which are priced mostly in the $20s) and served nightly.

Saturday and Sunday brunch - here's the menu - runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The Jordans have flipped the notion behind the Happy Rooster, which is a great bar that serves great food. Lou Bird's, they say, will be "a fantastic restaurant that happens to have a great bar."

The interior has been gutted, exposing original brick and relocating the restrooms to open up the space. John Bolle of Northern Liberties used custom and restored, reclaimed wood and items from the Divine Lorraine Hotel inside.