A new Philadelphia restaurant has been ranked in the top 10 “Best New Restaurants in America” by Bon Appétit magazine. Owned by Ellen Yin of High Street Hospitality Group, High Street on Market was ranked at #2 on “The Hot Ten 2014” list.
The restaurant, located at 308 Market St. in Philly's Old City neighborhood and took the prize based on its bread program.
Executive Chef Eli Kulp, who recently was named a "Best New Chef 2014" by Food & Wine Magazine, says High Street on Market is first and foremost a bakery.
“We are geared towards pushing the envelope of what bread can be without losing focus of what makes bread great,” Kulp says. “Bread influences the entire operation [of the restaurant].”
High Street on Market transitions throughout the day, shifting from a bakery at breakfast to a café at lunch to a sophisticated, yet casual dining environment at dinner, Kulp explained. The constant thread in this ever-changing restaurant is the bread created by Head Baker Alex Bois.
Traditional breakfast items, like pancakes and waffles, are nowhere to be seen, while sandwiches featuring local farm ingredients are High Street's morning headliner. The classic Danish is transformed into the “Red Eye Danish," a smokey ham-and-cheese-style Danish featuring smoked country ham, shaved cheese, and a “red eye” coffee gravy.
The lunch menu includes twists on classic Philadelphia favorites, such as a roast pork sandwich with fermented broccoli rabe.
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“We do things a step or two left of mainstream,” Kulp says. “Our food is unique and slightly different than you’d anticipate.”
Charred bread scraps are collected throughout the day and then ground to form the base of the pasta, a technique originating from regions in Italy.
The evaluation of the restaurants on the lists is done anonymously by a team of food critics, according to Kulp. The restaurants are not aware that they are being judged until after the critics have already finished dining.
“It’s scary sometimes that they eat anonymously,” Kulp says. “But the fact that they do makes the ranking very special. The hard work of the entire staff every day is recognized.”
When the rankings were listed today, Kulp was so busy at the restaurant that he did not realize they had been announced.
“I was caught off guard…floored,” Kulp says. “After I calmed down a bit, I was thrilled. I am so thankful to the dedicated group of people working at High Street on Market.”
In addition to High Street on Market, another new Philly restaurant, Serpico, was among the 50 nominees in the running for the final top 10 list.
The fully "Hot Ten 2014" list can be found at BonAppétit.com.