In The Loop, is dedicated to all things new and noteworthy on the Main Line, from business openings (and closings!) to artist appearances to remarkable neighbors.
Buckle up, friends & let’s get to it…
September New & Noteworthy:
• Game On!
A board game café is one move closer to opening at Cricket Avenue’s One Ardmore Place thanks to a recent ruling by the Lower Merion Board of Commissioners that gives the café approval to take over a liquor license from another restaurant that closed in 2019. (The state’s Liquor Control Board still must formally approve the transfer.) This will be the second location for Thirsty Dice; the original is located on Philadelphia’s Fairmont Avenue and boasts over 800 games(!) to peruse plus “Gametenders” to provide recommendations and explain game rules. The Ardmore outpost will feature a gastropub menu, massive board game library and plenty of space to play.
• Sweetgreen Comes to Wayne
Wayne residents are salivating over the impending arrival of Sweetgreen, the fast-casual salad chain that will open this fall at 223 E. Lancaster Avenue, in the old Le Pain Quotidien. Founded by three Georgetown University grads in 2007, the eco-friendly chain has developed a cult following for its seasonal, healthy salads and grain bowls made with produce delivered the same day. This will be Sweetgreen’s third Main Line location; the eatery opened spots in Ardmore in 2010 and King of Prussia Mall in 2016. In addition to its veggie-forward fare, the Wayne franchise will offer expanded outdoor seating and dedicated (free!) parking.
• Amped Up
Coffee and cycling fans can get their fix at one address thanks to the new Up to Eleven café in Ardmore. Located in the swanky new Cricket Flats apartment building across from One Ardmore Place, Up to Eleven gives patrons a chance to refuel and recharge via a mix of indoor and outdoor seating, free WIFI, e-bikes by Specialized, troubleshooting and repair services, coffee from local roaster Reanimator Coffee and an assortment of Kismet Bagels. Just in case you were wondering (we were!), “Up to Eleven” is a nod to a phrase coined in the 1984 cult classic Spinal Tap and the caffeine jolt the café gladly serves up.
• Cool Cocktail Spots
The Philadelphia Inquirer just published its list of best cocktail bars and two Main Line spots made the cut: Ripplewood Whiskey & Craft in Ardmore and The Goat’s Beard in Wayne.
• Enoteca Tredici Out; Italian Steakhouse In
Though it opened to great fanfare (those trees! that bar!) and glowing reviews in 2018, Enoteca Tredici could not survive COVID and several lawsuits filed against owner Greg Dodge alleging fraud and misappropriation of funds. Dodge blamed the closure on financial reasons, claiming the restaurant was popular but not profitable, and the high-end tapas restaurant formally closed its doors in Bryn Mawr Village last month. Now for the good news…an Italian steak house by acclaimed chef Marc Vetri will take its place in late winter or early spring 2022. No word on the design or name yet, but Vetri says it will be a “fun, not stuffy” spot to wine and dine.
• Nesting in Wayne
Nest Home Décor will open a second location in the old Baskin-Robbins and state liquor store at 209 W. Lancaster Avenue in Wayne (the original is in Oaks). Featuring a range of rustic, farmhouse-chic accessories and décor, like lamps, pillows, baskets and kitchen goods, Nest is aiming for an October debut. And like many Main Line businesses, they’re hiring!
• SEPTA is optimistic… and offering discounts!
SEPTA is preparing for increased ridership after Labor Day, adding more service across the system starting next week. Overall service will increase to 93% of pre-COVID levels. The Cynwyd Line will return with limited weekday service. There will be enhanced weekday morning and evening peak service, including the return of select Express trips on the Paoli/Thorndale line.
The rail service is also offering discounts on weekly passes in an effort to entice more riders to come on board. The week of Sept. 13, and through the weeks of Sept. 20 and 27, customers can get 25% off on all weekly TransPasses, for travel on buses, trolleys and subways, and TrailPasses which can be used on Regional Rail and on Transit.
That’s all for this month! Got a scoop for In the Loop? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave a comment below.