Former pro golfer Ryan Jordan, 28, has soft-opened Top Notch, his American BYOB in Medford's former Scotch Bonnet (20 S. Main St., 609-654-6240). Simple, family-friendly atmosphere.
Chef Dave Levecchia, whose resume includes Scaturros in Marlton, cooks good ol' faves, like French onion soup, Coca-Cola meat loaf, Nonna's sliders, and assorted pizzas. It's open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Sunday.
West Chester's Steve DiMarco was visiting the University of Kansas with his daughter, Gabriella, when they stopped to eat at Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, a Midwestern '50s-themer. DiMarco, who had previous restaurant experience, came away so impressed that he urged other family members to fly out to see it and sample the made-to-order food. Gabriella ended up going to KU on a golf scholarship. The DiMarcos opened a Freddy's in Broomall, in a former Arby's at 2084 Sproul Rd. (610-325-6725).
Fire & Ice, a neon-y restaurant and club, has opened softly at 312 Market St. in Old City. Previous occupant was Patou. Unrelated to other establishments with that name, Fire & Ice features a restaurant with padded walls, table seating, and 32 bar seats in the front, while the two-plus-story back room has many TVs, a 44-seat bar, a DJ booth accessed by a spiral staircase, a VIP section on the rear balcony, and a disco's worth of lighting. Rex Rogosch of R Squared Design outfitted the place. Moderate-priced contemporary international menu is served at lunch/brunch Wednesday to Sunday and for dinner Wednesday to Monday. (It's closed Tuesday.)
Shannon Dougherty and Liz Petersen have wrapped up A Full Plate, their BYOB cafe and catering operation in Northern Liberties' Liberties Walk. In late January, they will open Cedar Point Bar & Kitchen at 2370 E. Norris St. in Fishtown. It will be twice the size and will have a liquor license.
Feb. 1 is the target opening of Bufad, a wood-fired pizzeria at 13th and Spring Garden Streets in the previous Yum Yum Chinese takeout. Bufad will be the third restaurant over two blocks for owners Michael and Jeniphur Pasquarello, who also own Cafe Lift and Prohibition Taproom.
Old City's Fork sports a fresh, new look. One of owner Ellen Yin's waiters, Anthony DeMelas, painted murals of trees. Wayne Aretz, Yin's boyfriend, and his father ventured out into the woods and snagged a tree to stand in the back of the dining room. "Woods to table," quipped chef Eli Kulp, who helped with the installation.
The Pour House, a beer-first concept from the P.J. Whelihan's people, is due to open in May in the former Cheeseburger in Paradise location on Route 100 near Route 30 in Exton.
Darren Hill, an owner of Old City's National Mechanics bar and the e-commerce software-design company WebLinc, will take over the spot at 207 Chestnut St. that last was Q BBQ after many years as Philadelphia Fish & Co. Hill said he was still working on the concept.
This column will resume Jan. 10. For online updates, go to philly.com/food.