Starr Enlists Former Momofoku Ko Chef for Philly Restaurant

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Stephen Starr Photo: Patrick McMullan

Stephen Starr has a peachy new project in the works, and David Chang’s former chef at Momofuku Ko, Peter Serpico, is signed on to lead it. Philadelphia Inquirer restaurant critic Craig LaBan spilled the beans this weekend that Serpico, who is reportedly sick of New York’s rat race, is settling down in the City of Brotherly Love, where he will launch a self-titled restaurant under the Starr fleet’s flag sometime in December. According to LaBan, the chef who helped earned Ko its two Michelin stars has been in Philly for months, quietly fine-tuning his menu while under wraps in the kitchen at Starr’s Barclay Prime.

Details are spotty at best, but the restaurant, which will have just 52 seats and won’t take reservations, is coming to life inside a former sneaker store along Philly’s South Street. The strip once served as the center of the city’s nightlife and as Starr’s launch pad back in the eighties when he owned and operated music venues and comedy clubs there. His return has many crossing their fingers and hoping it’s the beginning of a revival for the neighborhood. LaBan writes that some examples of what Serpico’s working on for the new spot’s à la carte menu include burned mackerel tataki, sous-vide duck legs "torqued" into hot dogs, stuffed lamb ribs, and amaro-scented oxtail soup with caramelized onion dumplings in shaved daikon.

Fall Arts Preview: Dining [Inquirer]