The shopping district of Suburban Square welcomes a brand-new, eye-catching All-American bistro tonight, The Saint James.
As of 4 pm, two of the area’s heaving-hitting restaurateurs, Chef Michael Schulson and Rob Wasserman, will open the doors of their 120-seat contemporary-chic restaurant — one stylistically-lined with white brick, pea greens and charcoals, and finished with accents like plaid wool-covered booths, wooden floors and tables, and polished vintage accessories (the make-shift host stand is a card catalogue). 50 outdoor seats are also available in the Square’s stone courtyard — it’s an attractive dining patio too, as sculpted by Wasserman’s expertise, as previously seen at Rouge (and, we know you love people-watching at that Rittenhouse hot spot).
The home-like, retro decorative scheme is approachable — whether you prefer to opt for the dining room (pictured above, on left) or the bar room (pictured, on right). As you explore the American bistro’s affordable menu, which pays homage to the inspirational foods that Chef Michael is partial to, the modern touches remind you that you haven’t actually time-warped to rub elbows with Beaver Cleaver. For example, have a peek under the bar, there is built-in iPhone charging stations — I kid you not.
“We’ve created a ‘Center City experience’ in suburbs with The Saint James,” shared Michael. “We’re not trying to be stuffy or fancy, we’re trying to provide a good time and a place for people to visit multiple times a week.”
The acclaimed Chef Matt Moon (formerly of Talula’s Garden) joins Schulson’s kitchen as the Executive Chef, with the culinary rockstars putting forth appetizers like Smoked Trout Dip with Everything Bagel Chips, Nana Mary’s Chicken Livers with toast and pickled onions, and Franks in a Blanket; and sandwiches like Shrimp Rolls, a notable burger and Buttermilk Fried Chicken on a potato bun. A raw bar option is available, as well, highlighting choices like Tuna Tartare, a variety of oysters and Maine Lobster.
But, matching the mold of the new haunt’s homey conduct is their soul-warming entree roster, which includes hearty dishes like Pork Porterhouse, Tuna Steak and Spaghetti and Meatballs. Seven days a week, there is yet another offering up for grabs (yes—there is something for everyone) — a nightly sharable special, something Michael themed to be like “family dinners at home.” The daily feast is available for $25 per person and features one special for one-night-only (i.e. Sunday is Crispy Chicken, Tuesday’s Braised Pork Tacos, and Thursday’s Hot & Sweet Sausage). The entire dinner menu’s prices range from $6– $22.
Looking for some refreshment with your comfort food of choice? The beverage program is note-worthy, featuring a variety of wines that range in price from $8 — $14 for glass pours and $35 — $60 for bottles. A local craft beer list is available both on draft and in bottle, with Stoudt’s Brewing Co., Flying Fish, Weyerbacher and Sixpoint currently rocking the taps among others. Modern twists on cocktail classics round out the drink menu, which we confess, that we are already itching to get our parched paws on the Ardmore Cup — a rift on the classic Pimm’s Cup splashed with ginger beer. The Lavender 75, swirled with Aviation Gin, lavender syrup and champagne will be our choice, round two.
Find The Saint James in Suburban Square at 30 Parking Plaza to explore the new space for yourself, or learn more online at SaintJamesPhilly.com. You can make a reservation by calling 610-649-6200.
The Saint James is open for dinner Sunday through Tuesday, from 4 —10 pm; Wednesday and Thursday, 4 – until 11 pm; Friday and Saturday, 4 pm – midnight. Shortly after tonight’s grand opening, lunch and weekend brunch will be served (stay tuned for official details on that). Be sure to also follow our new restaurant friends on Twitter, by clicking here, and “like” them on Facebook, by clicking here.
All photographs credited to Amy Strauss. Click here to view more.