Blogger Stephanie Singer meets up with Marshall Green, executive chef of the new Jerry's Bar and previous owner of the former Northern Liberties bruncherie Café Estelle.
I went to the newest spot in my neighborhood, Jerry's Bar, one afternoon to meet with executive chef Marshall Green, perhaps best known for his previous stint as owner of Northern Liberties bruncherie Café Estelle (which I was so sad to see close).
Green is nothing if not a multitasker — our conversation took place in the restaurant's basement kitchen while he continued to make fresh bowtie pasta for his Chicken and Bowties dish, which he describes as a "deconstructed chicken soup."
The 32-year-old Green, a Glenside native and Abington Friends alum who has been cooking in Philadelphia kitchens since 2001, has unpacked some favorites from his time at the helm of Cafe Estelle — stuffed French toast, pancakes, house-made gravlax, shirred eggs and the like. "People would bump into me on the street and tell me that they were going through withdrawal from my gravlax!" exclaimed Green, who took an almost yearlong sabbatical from the business to, in his words, "go fishing" after failed lease negotiations left him no choice but to shutter Cafe Estelle. "That's what I wanted to offer at Jerry's — everything that I have."
Smoked salmon is but one of the Jewish influences to be found on the menu at Jerry's. Green, who wistfully remarks that the smell of brisket and matzah ball soup reminds him of his grandmother, said that "we'll have fun with specials as far as holidays go, but we will definitely be keeping it seasonal."
"I source my food as locally and high quality as possible." Green continued, "A lot of the standards on the menu will remain the same, and I'll add the seasonality to the specials menu, which will change weekly." Some examples: housemade pierogi, seasonal potato gnocchi and steak frites.
Green's resumé is full of well-known Philadelphia locations such as Fork, Django, Ansill and Meritage, which makes his choice to work at the new Jerry's Bar deliberate and intentional. "It's a nice place to come to work." He has no ownership stake in Jerry's Bar, but that doesn't stop him from approaching his job with a proprietorial interest, attending managers' meetings to share the knowledge that he has learned through his experience. "I'm working with a very talented team of people," Green explained.
Green is also excited to contribute to the growing number of dining destinations in Northern Liberties. "There are so many places with really good food —Standard Tap, Silk City, Bar Ferdinand —just to name a few."
Now, he's adding Jerry's Bar to that list.
129 W. Laurel Street Philadelphia, PA 19123
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