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What's Happening in:  Pennsport 

Fourth and Cross owner considering reuse of space as shared test kitchen

While the news of both Fourth and Cross and 1st Ward Sandwich closing in Pennsport is disappointing, one of those spots may be finding a new use.


Fourth and Cross owner, Andrew Michaels, is seeking neighborhood feedback on a new idea for his space at 1527 S. 4th St. The farm-to-table restaurant which closed at the end of December is considering a transition into a spot for people to use as a test kitchen, work space or event space.

This idea is still a work-in-progress, but Michaels is looking to gauge feedback on this concept to decide which direction to go in. If this would become a test kitchen and work space, it would be for professionals to test out new ideas and work on their menus or new ideas for the food industry. As he puts it, “all ideas would be entertained.” He would hope to set it up as a quick and affordable option for food businesses. If this would become a reality, it would then be a matter or setting up a schedule, rules and rates for the use of the space, among other things.

Michaels says he has offers from people looking to take over the space and have it remain a restaurant, but he wants to see if his idea has enough interest to be sustained.

What do you all think? Would you prefer to see another restaurant here, or have a new test kitchen space in Pennsport?

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17 Responses to Fourth and Cross owner considering reuse of space as shared test kitchen

  1. big durty v January 12, 2016 at 10:14 am #

    A co-working space for restaurateurs and green chefs? A novel and intriguing idea, the restaurant community’s approval and need for something like this will determine success/failure.

    Still don’t trust anything related to Andrew Michaels, though. Can’t get his ego out of the way enough to accomplish anything of substance.

  2. Christopher January 12, 2016 at 10:40 am #

    I’d love to give it a whirl! I was sorry to see the space that was on South Street close.

  3. MoyamensingNeighbor January 12, 2016 at 10:50 am #

    I’d love to see another restaurant occupy the space. We so needed what Michaels offered – great ingredients in a easy setting. Brunch and dinner preferred for this restaurant goer.

  4. Craig Laban January 12, 2016 at 12:04 pm #

    It should’ve remained a brunch spot. Omlettes, Panckaes and lunch specials would’ve survived well in this neighborhood. Re-open with a different attitude and serve what the people they want. Eggs and meat! Less on the “finest” ingrediants and you’ll do grea

    • Liz M. January 15, 2016 at 2:35 pm #

      We also need vegetarian options :) But I agree, more down and dirty – nothing fancy shmancy!

  5. WinterLawnChair January 12, 2016 at 9:38 pm #

    Let’s hope someone else takes over this space and takes advantage of the opportunity 4&C clearly missed out on. Booming neighborhood with 95 homes on the horizon only two blocks away, hard to imagine a casual spot wouldn’t thrive (as it seems 4&C was doing every weekend throughout the summer).

  6. Sal Meatballs January 13, 2016 at 3:27 pm #

    having a space for home cooks that enjoy throwing dinner parties or cooking classes with/for friends would also be fantastic. I’m constantly sharing/trading recipes & ideas with friends but because we all have small South Philly kitchens in our homes there is never room for everyone to work together.
    Being able to have 8-10 people working together in a kitchen would be a great dinner party. Instead of cooking & having people show up in time to eat we could share recipes & techniques hands on & in person.

  7. Scott H January 13, 2016 at 9:01 pm #

    I agree with Craig! I live down the block and we are in desperate need of what 4&C offered briefly, a great brunch spot. This idea seems interesting for another space/neighborhood that isn’t lacking in restaurant options as we currently are. Let someone else try to run a quality restaurant in the space with brunch and lunch please!

  8. steficakes January 15, 2016 at 10:48 am #

    Pop up restaurants? Great way to test a concept without having to spend a ton of money on restaurant build.. I agree, I live in this neighborhood and was very sad when 4&c dropped brunch, then started serving unique things like “bone marrow”.. this neighborhood just needs a comfortable restaurant that has welcoming staff and welcoming food.

  9. Falsk January 15, 2016 at 2:02 pm #

    I live two blocks away and rejoiced having both a brunch and dinner spot that I didn’t have to hike to like I do with Passyunk Square or Center City. Would prefer another restaurant, but anything to bring more life to Pennsport (and maybe convince other restaurants to appear) would be awesome.

  10. Only Me January 15, 2016 at 2:34 pm #

    Why go to the esoteric Andrew when a good per cent are wanting a bruncherie?

  11. Liz M. January 15, 2016 at 2:34 pm #

    We want a restaurant!!

    Test kitchen sounds cool, but so specific, perhaps wouldn’t have enough people to utilize it. I also am more interested in a venue that the public can enjoy/use, not just restaurant professionals.

  12. Penn Sporter January 15, 2016 at 6:27 pm #

    Nope – a test kitchen /event space offers no continuity for the neighborhood. It’s just another venture that super serves the chef/renter.

    Give the hood what it needs – a basic b’fast /lunch spot with a strong but simple brunch menu. Leave the gourmet / local only menu to another location. This venue has the potential to fill the void left by Carmen’s Country Kitchen over on 11/Wharton. The key to success is volume. Get residents to treat your space like it’s their ‘second kitchen’ and eat there 3-4 times a week because it’s a simple reasonably-priced menu

  13. Neighbor January 15, 2016 at 6:48 pm #

    4th and cross closing has been such a blow to residents like me. From my perspective, as a breakfast, lunch, and casual dinner place, it was darn near perfect. I understand that the realities of business and money didn’t work out, but the initial concept was such a win. That place, done as neighborhood diner, with good quality food, is exactly what was needed, and was delivered. Still scratching my head about it. Similarly dismayed re 1st Ward where the food was also excellent. Guess that why I’m not a restauranteur. Would really like to see it reopen as a restaurant.

  14. Pip January 15, 2016 at 9:41 pm #

    Stop! My mind is whirling as in the period of 8 months we have had a diner for 4 months, fine dining for 3 weeks and now a thought about a test kitchen . The diner supplied our demand but……what?

  15. Sarah January 17, 2016 at 4:19 pm #

    While I think a test kitchen would be interesting (I would love a more affordable place like Cook, where a lay person like myself could learn from a professional)! But just in theory. I think our neighborhood could use a restaurant where the community can gather. Why open a space where you may get one person who comes once a year as opposed to a place where someone wants to dine multiple times a week and bring their family and friends?

  16. neighbor January 19, 2016 at 9:49 am #

    While I generally prefer the idea of another restaurant, if it had to be something else, I’d prefer something more like the Artisan Exchange kitchen in West Chester rather than a “test kitchen,” if I understand correctly what that means. The entrepreneurial kitchen rental idea could open up the possibility of small batch food production for more people, rather than being limited to serving only established restaurant owners.

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