Editor’s Update: Unfortunately, due to issues out of Fenice Creolo’s control, the restaurant will operate as a BYOB until further notice. The restaurant opened to the public on Feb. 8, 2013.
“Would you like a beer?” asked co-owner of Fenice Creolo, Christopher Lamarra. Sounded like a great idea at the time, but when you have the brew selection of Fenice Creolo, the pressure is on! And that pressure called for a Yards Brewing Company IPA, one of my all time favorites. Before I continue with the tour, let me shout out a “thank you” to Chris for his assist in popping off the beer cap. Cheers, friend!
Now, if you were a die-hard fan of the Epicurean (probably known as the Ep to those die-hards), fear not. Trust me when I tell you, everything is in good hands. These guys know their stuff, especially with ten plus years of experience from Ron’s Original Bar & Grille. Ron’s, located in Exton, is notorious for their stellar selection of craft brews and menu items. Knowing this, I couldn’t be more excited to see what Tom and Chris bring to the other end of Route 113.
Right off the bat, I can tell you this excitement starts with Dogfish Head, Magic Hat, Loose Cannon, Yards and much more. I haven’t even scraped the service, but the photos might help paint the picture. Bottom line, they have great beer and lots of it.
Chris and Tom have already started customizing the take-out section to match their vibrant color scheme of burnt orange, purple and white. The coolers are filling up fast and almost fully stocked. Pretty soon, you’ll be able to craft your own six packs, buy non-refrigerated bottles and even purchase a gift basket of beer. I asked the guys if customers would be able to customize the gift baskets themselves or if they’ll already be prepared. Chris responded, “Both. We’ll give people the option. We know some people looking to get a basket might not know much about the beers.” Guess I know where to send my Pollyanna this holiday.
As of right now, Chris and Tom are making headway to turn the once known Epicurean into the next local hot spot in town. Within the next couple of months, they expect to be open, offering Cajun and Italian infused menu items, but don’t worry; they will have a selection of bar food for those looking to just snack with a pint. When all is said and done, anticipate live entertainment, a dozen plus beers on tap (specializing in craft beers) and an additional upstairs bar. As for today, customers can grab a six pack on the way home from their 9 to 5’s.
I’ll admit, it was a huge downer to see the Epicurean go, and with it, my ability to quickly grab a six pack or 20 oz. Now, my only dilemma will be the extensive decision making on what to grab for the evening. With a hundred plus beers at my finger tips, I’d say this is a good problem to have. From the looks of things, both Chris Lamarra and co-owner Tom Mastronardo are on the right track to something great, and I couldn’t be more excited to see what Fenice Creolo has in store.
Photographs credited to Kevin Dragone.