Chick's, Man

When one door closes, another opens--especially in a city where liquor licenses are scarcer than parking spots. So when the last drop of Dewars was poured at old man watering hole Chick's Bar & Backroom Cafe on 7th & Kater, its reincarnation was pretty much a given. The blogosphere buzzed: A gastropub? Spanish tapas bar? Maybe another Italian BYOB we need so desperately. Doors reopened in April as Chick's Cafe & Wine Bar, a sophisticated speakeasy reminiscent of Southwark or a set from The Big Sleep. Check Chick's MySpace page, which will serenade you with Sinatra. Pressed tin walls and ceilings, a refinished bar, stained glass, and vintage chandeliers complete the retro aesthetic, while European small plates, cheese, charcuterie, a 60-deep wine list, and boutique and local brews on tap keep the feeling very current. Gnudi (pictured) have been garnering favorable buzz, though we found these Munchkin-sized "naked ravioli" rather dense and doughy for a dish that by definition lacks dough. A short rib over soft polenta benefited from a beautiful braise, but the dish overall struck too wintry a chord for May. Light and summery, fried calamari, on the other hand, was an ideal warm-weather picky, especially washed down with a fruity Spanish vina sol. Golden figs, caramelized onions, and Gorgonzola make a captivating combination atop cracker-crisp flatbread, and scallops with fennel-and-blood orange salad is a lovely summertime refresher. Kirsten Henri is crushing the garlicky Tuscan fries in this week's Philadelphia Weekly. Still, Chick's old-school swank ambiance is undeniably greatest asset. A long goodbye is not needed; we know we'll be back soon.

Photo: Zagat, Blogalicious

1 comment:

matthew Lallo said...

This friendly South pP hilly jewel features leaded glass, dark woods,lots of brass and stamped tin ceiling and walls. Seats only 20 in the bar room and 8 at the bar, the adjacent room can take a party of up to 12 with a promised upstairs to seat 40. Wine by the glass and bottle plus quartino (11 ounces) $9.00 for a mediocre pinot noir. Excellent cheese and charcuterie plate. Fig and Gorgonzola with carmelized onions on flat bread a must for thin crust pizza lovers. Roast boar and porcini over polenta an exceptional albeit quite rich dish. The white anchovy salad over micro rocket a great starter and dark chocolate truffle tart a perfect ending. Typical south philly parking issues but worth the agita.POST