Six months after the closure of Philadelphia fine dining institution Le Bec Fin, chef Justin Bogle is ready to open Avance in the famed space tonight. The opening was one of the most anticipated Fall openings in Philadelphia and in the country, both due to Bogle's two Michelin-starred past at Gilt in New York City and to the four decade legacy of Le Bec Fin.
Avance will serve an a la carte menu, a prix fixe menu, and a constantly-changing tasting menu. The restaurant describes itself as "Progressive American in its approach" and notes that the menu will be driven by "pristine ingredients." On the beverage front, the wine list offers over 500 selections and there's a cocktail program with "a serious nod to history."
Along with a totally new concept and menu, the space has undergone extensive renovations inside and out. Where once it was opulently decorated, Philadelphia City Paper now describes the restaurant as sleek with exposed Edison bulbs, walnut wood tables, and bright new paintings. There is also a "living wall" built into the facade and a shelf of cookbooks in the dining room.
Menu from a sneak peak dinner. [Screengrab: Vimeo]
Back in May, rumors were circulating that Bogle was being brought on to work at Le Bec Fin, which had gone through some chef shuffles following the departure of chef Georges Perrier. Bogle was actually brought on after the owners and management confirmed that Le Bec Fin would close. Bogle told the Glamorosi blog: "I loved the place, what it represented, the bones of the property. I told them — and they knew c'mon — that Le Bec Fin is Georges Perrier, his legacy, and without him it should not be LBF."
In the videos created by Avance below, Bogle talks about his goals for the restaurant and lets viewers in on menu planning, farm trips, and team meetings. Go, watch:
Video: Avance Restaurant- Episode 1: Arrival
Video: Avance Restaurant- Episode 2: To The Source
· Avance Launches New Era for 1523 Walnut [Eater Philly]
· Avance Restaurant- Episode 1: Arrival [Vimeo]
· Avance marks a new chapter at a storied restaurant address [PCP]
· All Avance Coverage on Eater [-E-]