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Union Transfer crew going to riverfront with a beer garden

Avram Hornik and his partners are taking over the former Rock Lobster.

This just in:

Avram Hornik and his partners from Union Transfer are taking over the former Rock Lobster, the landmark riverfront restaurant destination just north of the Ben Franklin Bridge (221 N. Columbus Blvd.). Its last incarnation was Octo Waterfront Grill.

Hornik is joined by Mark Fichera, Sean (R5) Agnew, Four Corners' Joe Crouse, and Bowery Presents' Jim Glancy and John Moore.

Hornik tells me that their operation - so far unnamed - will be a seasonal (May to October) American beer garden. "The foods of summer" are what they're after - fresh meats/fish and sandwiches, regional beers on draft, large bottle selection, in a family friendly atmosphere cooled down by trees and shade.

They say they'll create a "backyard" for Center City, as they'll have bicycle parking for 200 outside plus 250 spaces across the street. "We see ourselves as a connection to Center City - someplace you can spend 12 hours at," he said.

It will serve brunch, lunch, dinner, and late-night. May is the target opening.

Hornik, meanwhile, is saying "end of March" for his reconfiguration of Ortlieb's Jazz House in Northern Liberties and "sometime in 2012" for Boot Philly, his redo of the South Broad Street Boot & Saddle Bar.