A few years back, three cools signs marked three closed business at or near the corner of Broad & Ellsworth. In late 2011, the Broad Street Diner reopened under new management after being closed for almost five years. Last year, Boot & Saddle came back to life after being dark for over two decades. Sadly, Philip's Restaurant, the third business near this corner, has remained shuttered as rebirth has come to the intersection.
But yesterday, we heard that change could be coming soon to the former Philip's. A few years back, Hidden City did a great interview with Phyllis Muzi, who used to run the restaurant along with her husband John. During that interview, Ms. Muzi stated that she could easily sell the building, but for some reason didn't want to give it up while she was still alive. She suggested that she gets weekly calls about the property, which last held an active business back in the 1990s.
To our knowledge, Ms. Muzi remains with us. But it seems that one of those callers has finally been able to prevail upon her. In the coming months, the building will be sold, with a new restaurant taking over the old Philip's space. We've been sniffing around, but haven't been able to suss out exactly who will actually be doing the purchasing. Could it be Avram Hornik's team, who already operates two establishments nearby in Boot & Saddle and the Dolphin Tavern? Should we rule out Stephen Starr for a project like this? Or could it be an independent chef or restaurateur taking over?
Unfortunately, we've heard that the eventual buyer has set their sights on completely renovating the space and moving away from its history. That would mean eliminating the awesome sign out front that so sets the property apart. That would indeed be a huge shame. Hopefully, they'll have a change of heart once it's all theirs.
Update: Like the rest we posted today, this story is not true.