Spice Finch — Philadelphia, USA
After several years away, Philly-native and Le Bernardin alum Jennifer Carroll and her partner Billy Riddle have returned home with the opening of Spice Finch, the highly anticipated Mediterranean restaurant in historic Rittenhouse Square.
From the kitchen, Carroll’s French cooking techniques shine through in dishes – like the salt-baked eggplant served with mushrooms, béchamel and garlic, or the delicious date-braised lamb shank that comes with warm grain salad, roasted vegetables and cucumber – that nod to the culinary delights that can be found all over the region. Meanwhile, a strong no-waste effort and a thoughtful bar programme rooted in the classics ticks all the contemporary dining boxes.
In that same vein, the visual narrative of the bight and airy space is largely dominated by wood. Custom created by Cottingham LTD, the millwork adds layers of eye-catching texture from the the strikingly curvy oak tambour panels at the bar to the ceiling with its warm strips of maple. The supple leather banquette, hexagonal marble flooring, and mid-century modern chairs all in subtle shades of black, chocolate, and grey help anchor the interiors so that there’s plenty to look, but they’re simple enough that the star of the show remains Carroll and Riddle’s food. §