Fat Ham opens in University City

Fried green tomatoes from The Fat Ham. Credit: Vanessa Beahn
Fried green tomatoes are on the menu at The Fat Ham.
Credit: Vanessa Beahn

Last Friday, University City welcomed its latest addition to the growing restaurant scene when the doors of The Fat Ham officially opened for business. The Southern-inspired, pork-centric restaurant is “Top Chef” winner Kevin Sbraga’s second in Philly. His first is, of course, the eponymous and popular Sbraga, in Center City on the Avenue of the Arts. By opening shop across the river with The Fat Ham, Sbraga is continuing the trend of restaurant growth in an area that – up until recently – offered mostly slim pickings.

The Fat Ham moved into the Tria Wine Room space at 3131 Walnut St., while the Tria folks, not receiving enough love on the west side, focused their efforts on the new Tria Taproom in Center City instead. Sbraga is hoping a place like The Fat Ham, which promises a more casual approach, will be able to thrive in the same spot.

“Sbraga is a little more of a fine-dining format,” says the chef about his first restaurant. The Fat Ham is “more family style and casual. It’s like Sunday supper at someone’s grandma’s house. It’s smaller here and more intimate. The lights are lower, the music is louder, and the staff is different.”

Around the corner from The Fat Ham is Shake Shack, which opened at 3200 Chestnut St. in October. And at 4034 Walnut St., in what used to be a Lee’s Hoagie House, two Drexel alums opened Wishbone, a fried chicken joint that was so popular when it opened that the chicken sold out in a matter of hours.

“It’s a great time to be a part of this area. There’s so much going on over here, and I think it will continue to grow. I don’t know why it wouldn’t keep growing, with Zavino and Federal Donuts opening over here,” says Sbraga, referring to two popular Center City spots opening University City locations.

Famed chef Rick Bayless of Chicago’s Tortas Frontera is also planning to open a restaurant in the area soon.

As for Sbraga, he’s happy with his two locations for now, and isn’t starting a restaurant empire anytime soon. “It’s way too early for me to start thinking about that,” he says with a laugh. “It’s not necessarily my goal to open a million restaurants.”

The Fat Ham
3131 Walnut St.
215-735-1914
www.sbragadining.com



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

'Suspicious' Hamilton Heights fire caused by power strip:…

An extension cord overload caused the deadly fire in Hamilton Heights late Monday that killed a 15-year-old girl and injured at least 12 others.

National

At 91, Marvel creator Stan Lee continues to…

By Piya Sinha-RoyLOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Marvel Entertainment's chief emeritus Stan Lee may be in his ninth decade, but it hasn't stopped him from adding…

National

Islamic State says beheads U.S. journalist, holds another

Islamic State insurgents released a video purportedly showing the beheading of U.S. journalist James Foley, who had gone missing in Syria nearly two years ago.

Local

VIDEO: NYPD seeks shooter in East New York…

Cops are on the lookout for an unknown shooter who aimed and missed hitting a man on a bicycle, instead nearly striking a nearby officer in East New York.

Movies

Interview: Jessica Alba is a stripper again in…

Jessica Alba has gotten used to vague phone calls from director Robert Rodriguez, the Austin-based auteur who has made a habit of putting Alba into…

Movies

Interview: Robert Rodriguez doesn't mind that Jessica Alba…

In making a Hollywood-friendly adaptation of Frank Miller's gritty "Sin City" graphic novel series, Robert Rodriguez learned that some things have to go — namely…

Television

TV watch list, Wednesday, Aug. 20: 'Extant,' 'Legends'…

See a two hour block of Halle Berry's scifi show, "Extant."

The Word

The Word: Mischa Barton in trouble, not that…

  People are really, really worried about Mischa Barton. Again. The former "O.C." star is reportedly in deep financial trouble and can't seem to get…

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL defense (DEF)

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL quarterbacks (QB)

MLB

Shane Greene travels unlikely road to Yankees stardom

Shane Greene was throwing a bullpen session on a quiet field at Daytona Beach Community College one day when the ball started moving.

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL tight ends (TE)

Parenting

Fun family activity: Off-Broadway show for pre-teens

"The Love Note" is an off-Broadway musical your pre-teen won't roll his or her eyes at.

Parenting

Barnes & Noble partners with Samsung to release…

Barnes & Noble releases the first full android tablet optimized for reading.

Style

11 timeless gifts for registries or just because

Gifts to prove you're a style maven once and for all.

Food

The Chic Wife tells us how to use…

Kris Schoels, aka The Chic Wife, grew up on a farm with peach trees. August is National Peach Month, but Kris Schoels doesn’t need a reason…