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To Lure Recessaion Riden Diners, Chefs Try a Little Innovation

To Lure Recessaion Riden Diners, Chefs Try a Little Innovation

Michael Klein | Philadelphia Inquirer

Barbecue was a sideline business, says Taylor, who started selling out of a bar in Ridley Park a few years ago. He called it Zachary’s and built a Web site. The business went by the wayside but the site remained, and Taylor got a call for a big catering job at an Army-Navy Game.

It’s open from 5 p.m. through late night Tuesdays through Saturdays and from 10 a.m. to midnight Sundays.

Savona reconfiguring

After 12 years, Savona owner Evan Lambert is looking to evolve at the Gulph Mills destination restaurant. It’s closed for renovations and is expected to reopen in mid-May. Savona will break out a 30-seat fine-dining room, where traditionalists can order from Andrew Masciangelo’s refined Riviera-inspired menu.

The rest of the restaurant – including a new, expanded bar and outdoor patio – will serve a more casual Italian menu focused on locally available ingredients.

Prices are (and will be) $100 a person for fine dining. Lambert expects a tab for two in the casual section to run about $80.

The economy? “We can’t avoid talking about it,” says Lambert, stressing that Savona’s a la carte business is strong. “We’re successful in a quiet way,” he says. “Our biggest hit has been in private dining. Not as many companies are doing events anymore.”

Savona’s cellar remains at 1,100 bottles. The wine-by-the-glass list, under sommelier Melissa Monosoff, will expand to 50 selections.