Art Alliance Introduces Rittenhouse Tavern
by christina pellegrini
The Art Alliance’s contemporary craft and design collection in the Wetherill Mansion warrants a dining experience equally steeped in artistic presentation. That’s exactly what Restaurant Associates senior vice president of food and beverage and Michelin-starred chef Ed Brown aimed for in Rittenhouse Tavern, the most recent iteration of the dining space in this historic building. Restaurant Associates adds Rittenhouse Tavern to its portfolio boasting culture-centric fine-dining concepts at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.
The tasteful, American-inspired décor scheme by Elisabeth Knapp Architect (responsible for Cook + Solo’s Zahav and Percy Street Barbecue), features mossy green walls that complement the richly hued 1920s Richard Blossom Farley mural that wraps around the dining room. A well-executed culinary and beverage program gives the gorgeous space substance—the seasoned Nicholas Elmi, previously executive chef at Le Bec-Fin, serves elegant plates informed by local ingredients, including cream-cheese-stuffed crispy frog legs; New Jersey striped bass with Tuscan kale, hedgehog mushrooms, and hibiscus-red-wine sauce; and a fried chicken supper served only on Sunday evenings. Cocktails such as the Betsy Ross, a blend of Gordon’s gin, Cocchi Americano, and St-Germain, are cool and refreshing—and best enjoyed in the spacious outdoor patio, bordered by flowers and the chef’s fresh herb garden. 251 S. 18th St., 215-732-2412
photography by andrew kahl