Fond, the ambitious BYOB, has moved into a new space nearby, just off Passyunk Avenue, on the corner of 11th and Tasker Streets (1537 S. 11th St., 215-551-5000). Owners chef Lee Styer, Jessie Prawlucki, and Tory Keomanivong pick up a liquor license, a seven-seat bar (two beers on tap, three by the bottle; seven bottles of red, seven bottles of white; five of each by the glass, plus mixed drinks), and a 10-or-so-seat chef's table. They have not said what will become of their previous location.
Also on East Passyunk:
What was Salt & Pepper (1623 E. Passyunk) will eventually yield to Sophia - the result of a partnership of Salt & Pepper's Joe Massara and chef Christopher Lee. The men closed the restaurant shortly before Thanksgiving to renovate the kitchen. That was Phase 1. Between Dec. 22 and 27, they plan to reopen the bar and dining rooms. The next phase will require a four-week closing to install a new facade with fling-out windows and a new bar. In the meantime, Lee will experiment with the menu. The bar area will be casual and neighborhood-friendly, the upstairs dining room a bit more ambitious. They are attempting a sexy, '40s and '50s look. Plans also include a rooftop chef's table and a deck on a rear patio adjacent to Capogiro. Lee, who won critical acclaim while chef at the Stephen Starr-owned Striped Bass, will shuttle between Sophia and his New York projects.
Peter McAndrews, who cut his teeth at Rembrandt's in Fairmount a while back, and his crew are now running the kitchen at the nearby Bridgid's (726 N. 24th St.). McAndrews - who now owns Paesano's, Modo Mio, Monsu, Popolino, and La Porta - said his menu is designed to satisfy two factions: the neighborhood families that crave parms, spaghetti, and other Italian grub, as well as the seekers of cicchetti (small plates), with more esoteric fare such as tongue and organ meats.
NoBL (24 N. Lansdowne Ave., Lansdowne), the Mediterranean BYOB that closed several weeks ago amid the departure of chef Sam Jacobson, is expected to be back this week. Owner Stephen Wagner says he'll direct the kitchen. Most of the menu will be eight to 10 mezze dishes that will change weekly. Hours are 6 to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. In an interview after NoBL's closing in November, Wagner said the intricacies of the previous menu were driving up the labor costs. Wagner also owns the nearby BYOB Sycamore. Jacobson, who also was chef there, left last week. Wagner has not announced Jacobson's replacement at either restaurant.
Dan Freeman is gradually reopening Rimedio (4443 Spruce St.), which this year replaced Rx in West Philadelphia. It's been closed for a couple of months to regroup. Freeman is offering weekend brunch now, with an eye to expanded days in January.
Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant will open in a former carpet store in Ardmore Plaza (44 Greenfield Ave.) in 2014. The brewpub chain's next location (No. 10) will open in Voorhees Town Center next year.
Having closed his Rosey's BBQ location in Jenkintown and Ambler, Chad Rosenthal is turning his attention to what was the Shanachie, one of the larger restaurants on Ambler's main drag (111 E. Butler Ave.). He said he was developing a bar/restaurant with "soul and a funky, hip vibe, combined with a live music venue." He aims for a March opening.
Fat Jack's - rooted in Vineland, N.J., with a location at Roosevelt Boulevard and Red Lion Road in Northeast Philadelphia - has assumed Rosey's spot at 505 Old York Rd. in Jenkintown (215-885-8600).
A second location of Mac's Tavern, the Old City bar whose ownership includes It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia creator/star Rob McElhenney and his real-life wife, Kaitlin Olson (Dee on the show), seems to be getting close to signing. Indications are pointing to Chestnut Street near Rittenhouse Square.
Spike Mendelsohn, the Life After Top Chef personality, said by Twitter that he was looking for a space in Center City to accommodate Good Stuff Eatery, his D.C.-based restaurant.
New Year's Eve will be the finale, after nearly eight years, of the Walnut Room, the small club over Alfa American Tavern at 1709 Walnut St. Joe Beckham and Giancarlo DiPasquale say they will rebrand and open a dance club.