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The latest trend in restaurants is all-day cafes. Open early morning through late evening with a menu that changes to satisfy shifting desires throughout the day, they’re far from easy to run — see much-lauded Hungry Pigeon, which just went dinner-only — but they’re great for customers.
Now serving on North Broad is one in a style not yet represented in Philly: the Parisian-inspired Gabi.
Peter Woolsey of Bistrot La Minette (Queen Village) and La Peg (FringeArts on Columbus Boulevard) teamed with chef Kenneth Bush and general manager Brad Histand to launch the restaurant at 339 N. Broad St., in the ground floor of the newly renovated Hanover apartment building.
“It’s like a French version of a diner,” said Woolsey, whose wife is from France. “These are everywhere in Paris.”
So far Gabi is only open for lunch and dinner, with a complement of bistro classics and a full bar to match. There’s cheesy onion soup, garlicky escargot, rich-but-healthy Niçoise salad, duck confit and steak frites in two sizes.
With few dishes above $20 and midday meals below $10, the spot is close enough to Center City to be a good option for workday snacks or happy hour. It’s also right off the Vine Street Expressway, so will likely attract patrons driving in for a night at the Met theater or Avenue of the Arts entertainment further south.
Breakfast starting at 7 a.m. is launching soon — which speaks to all the development happening right around the restaurant.
The former Inquirer building and soon-to-be Philly Police headquarters is right across the street, and there’s more homes popping up all over the neighborhoods to the north, west and east of the Parisian comfort food destination.
Top quality food and drink from Woolsey and Bush are a given at this point, considering their pedigree at long-serving La Minette, but the bonus when you go is the Art Deco interior design.
Check out some more pics below.