Don’t let the name fool you, Walnut Street Café is much more sophisticated in its decor and menu than you’ve come to expect from a typical cafe. Located inside the Cira Centre South at 2929 Walnut Street the restaurant was designed by Parts & Labor, Paris-based creative studio. The restaurant is decked out with a modern and minimalist aesthetic accenting light green leather banquets, bleached walnut and brass touches. Inside the 90-seat restaurant are 21-foot high ceilings and calming hues of white, pastel blue and pink along with customized dimming light fixtures, allowing for a seamless transition from breakfast into cocktail bar at night.
Branden McRill, Chef Daniel Eddy, and Patrick Cappiello from BDP Hospitality, along with owner and developer Brandywine Realty Trust, proudly introduce this all-day restaurant with an accessible American menu, terroir-driven wine list, and inspired pastry program from acclaimed pastry chef Melissa Weller (Roberta’s, Per Se).
Walnut Street Café’s all-day menu begins with a Morning Bakery Counter of sweet and savory baked goods and fresh breads all ready to grab-and-go, including Cinnamon Cardamom Rolls, Cheddar Chive Scones, Chocolate Babka, croissants, and more. We tried some of the babka and housemade Madelines. A full-service breakfast and weekend brunch menu are also available in the dining area, with dishes such as Breakfast Sandwich with Fennel Sausage, egg, and cheddar cheese on a house-made biscuit and Black Scrapple with black rice and romesco. During the weekday, lunch offerings include seasonal soups, and salads, sandwiches.
Transitioning into dinner, diners can choose from a refreshing raw bar, salads and a selection of snacks. We tried the Salmon Gravlax with an Everything Crisp and Avocado Toast. Shareable plates follow, including Pan-Roasted Scallops, and fresh homemade pastas like Rigatoni with tomato, guanciale, peperoncino. Heartier mains anchor the menu including Black Bass with cannellini beans, sauce piperade, and mint; Porterhouse-for-Two with bordelaise, roasted shallots, potato puree; Veal Rack with Swiss chard, dried apricots, and farro; and a variety of sides like Summer Squash with radicchio and sunflower seed and Grilled Carrots with black pepper and honey.
We sampled the Ravioli with brown butter, ricotta, and mint; Roast Chicken with mushrooms, marsala sauce, and preserved lemon; and Hanger Steak with salsa verde, and bordelaise sauce. Each of these dishes is available for both lunch and dinner. Pair them with a glass or bottle of wine curated by Cappiello. The wine program offers 120 bottles from a breadth of producers, favoring small production, hand-crafted wines that, in most cases, employ organic or biodynamic farming methods. All bottles on the wine list will also be available by the half bottle, and over 50 selections of by the glass options will rotate on a frequent basis.
David Powell, formerly of Death & Company, Pearl & Ash, Raines Law Room, and The Bennett, crafts a cocktail menu rooted in simplicity, and balance. The Port of Philadelphia features Angostura bitters, Taylor Fladgate Port, cinnamon syrup, and 23-year Zacapa; and Concrete Jungle incorporates ginger syrup, lime juice, pineapple, Cruzan Black Strap and Amaro Montenegro. Coffee is provided by local Rival Bros Coffee, featuring a selection of custom house roasted blends from carefully sourced single-origin beans. Lest us not forget a slice of Cherry Slab Pie with vanilla ice cream and whipped honey with that cup of coffee!
Walnut Street Café is open for Breakfast from Monday to Friday from 8 – 11:30 am, and Brunch on Saturday – Sunday from 11:30 am – 5:00 pm. The pastry counter is open from 8:00 – 11:30 am. Lunch is available Monday – Friday from 11:30am – 5pm, and Dinner is available Sunday and Monday from 5:00 – 9:00 pm, Tuesday through Thursday 5:00 – 10:00 pm, Friday & Saturday til 11:00 pm. Reservations are available via phone at 215-867-8067 or online.