Garces Trading Company Opens at the Kimmel Center With an All Day Cafe, Coffee Shop, Bakery and Market
James Beard Award Winner and Iron Chef Jose Garces announces the grand opening of Garces Trading Company at Kimmel, located inside the Kimmel Center at 300 S. Broad Street. The reinvented concept is back in an all-new way as a collection of casual cafes that are part coffee shop, restaurant, bakery, marketplace and corporate catering servcies.
For the new location on the Kimmel Cultural Campus, patrons will find an exclusive coffee roast that pays tribute to superstar conductor Yannick Nezet-Seguin of The Philadelphia Orchestra. Yannick’s Blend joins new food offerings that will include The Spotlight (Braised Short Rib), The Standing Ovation (Chicken Pot Pie) and The Bravo (Country Ham, Amish Butter, Baguette). For aesthetics, Chef has tapped Architect Kieran Timberlake and Marguerite Rodgers Interior Design for this unique space.
The cafe breaks through the exterior wall adjacent to Spruce Street and is situated in the highly trafficked area that formerly housed the box office- which has been moved to the lower level. Adding another entrance to the overall building, Garces Trading Company opens inside directly from the Plaza and outside from Spruce Street. Garces Trading Company at Kimmel is located across the Plaza from sister restaurant Volvér. The new café will grand open on Wednesday, January 18, 2023, at 7:30am with free croissants to the first 150 patrons and visitors until 9:30am, free small coffee giveaway between 10:00am and 10:30am, and a ribbon cutting ceremony and first coffee pour with Chef Jose Garces, superstar conductor of The Philadelphia Orchestra Yannick Nezet-Seguin and President and CEO Matías Tarnopolsky of The Philadelphia Orchestra and Kimmel Center, Inc..
When opened, hours will be seven days a week, from 7:00am to 4:00pm, plus extended hours to 11:00pm when there are performances on campus. For menus and more info, please visit www.garcestradingcompany.com and follow on social media at @GarcesTradingCo. For more about Chef Jose Garces and Garces follow @ChefJoseGarces and @GarcesGroup.
“I’m so incredibly excited to be able to announce that the newest Garces Trading Company is now open for business at the Kimmel Cultural Campus,” said Garces. “Since opening Volvér in 2014, the Kimmel Cultural Campus and the Garces brand have had a special relationship, and I’m so pleased to be able to continue to grow that as we bring Garces Trading Company to campus. This major opening continues our expansion plans into the new year. It also adds another reason to visit the Avenue of the Arts as it goes through a historic transformation with new restaurants, retail and residences.”
Chef added, “Garces Trading Company is really special to me. The concept is centered around an exchange of cultures that neighbors, friends, family members, coworkers and creatives can explore and connect over new dishes and flavors. Garces Trading Company is truly an outpost for foodies that incorporates discovery and connections, and I am excited to bring new life back to the GTC idea in an all-new way. I couldn’t think of a better place to give this idea new life.”
“We bring people together for artistic and cultural experiences, civic and intellectual life, moments of connection, and more,” said The Philadelphia Orchestra and Kimmel Center, Inc. President and CEO Matías Tarnopolsky. “We are delighted to co-host the opening of the new café in the Kimmel Center Plaza, a space for Philadelphians to gather, to enjoy delicious food and drink, and to experience the arts together.”
The new Garces Trading Company is a bistro concept from Latino Chef Jose Garces that builds on the brand’s history, offering casual daytime and early evening dining experiences that extend into the dining room, the home and the office. The new concept aims to create connections through food, discovery and community. The refreshed concept and innovative marketing approach positions Garces Trading Company as both a must-visit dining and shopping experience. Working collaboratively while remaining true to Chef’s vision, Garces Trading Company will be the “go-to” destination for friends to connect, visitors to explore flavors and dishes, and all to discover local artisans and unique wares.
For the new Kimmel location, Garces Trading Company aims to bring arts patrons, foodies, neighbors, tourists, office workers and artists together for early morning coffee and pastry, mid-day lunch and pre- and post-event cocktails, snacks and sweets. The new cafe features 1,700 square feet of space, with seating for 55 guests inside, with additional seating for 20 guests outside during nice weather. The open-kitchen concept also features a full-service made-to-order coffee bar, grab-and-go cases and a specialized marketplace.
For early-morning risers, the smell of the first drops of the new and exclusive Yannick’s Blend will entice those on the Avenue of the Arts inside for coffee, espresso, breakfast tacos, pastries and a full café menu. For neighbors and nearby workers, lunch will feature a selection of handhelds, bowls, salads and savory bites. For pre-theatre and event crowds, Garces Trading Company will offer selections for those coming from work and who want a bite before the show, or for those that want to extend their experience into the evening.
For this unique concept, Chef Jose Garces took inspiration from the original marketplace and wine shop concept that first opened back in 2008 just blocks away in Midtown Village. He reinvented and elevated the brand with expanded offerings from GTC’s virtual return in 2020 as one of Philadelphia’s most ground-breaking ghost kitchens. The series of new brick and mortar cafes now includes Kimmel Cultural Campus and the recently opened CIRA Centre location.
Every aspect is carefully considered to ensure that when each cafe opens its doors, it offers a memorable experience that delivers on the GTC promise. Intentionally crafted dining options set the stage for an equally curated catering model, where everything from the takeout packaging to the conference room catering setup has been designed to create a positive dining experience, even if that experience happens at your desk instead of a dining room. The cafes have a timeless feel that puts the focus on what really matters — the food, drink and community — but which don’t just fade into the background.
Garces Trading Company is an everyday experience, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be exceptional. From the self-evident quality of the ingredients to the carefully curated selection of products to buy, there’s something special about every bite, every moment and every purchase. GTC is elevating the day-to-day without being precious about it. Great coffee without the pretension, great meals served with warmth, not attitude, and an experience that invites guests to relax and trust us to deliver something that’s just a little bit extraordinary.
Built on the idea that every meal should be a great meal, GTC means even a salad grabbed on the run between meetings should be fresh, delicious and made with care and quality ingredients.
Each meal should be built on connections through food. Breaking bread together is only the beginning. GTC is not just creating spaces for people to share a meal or a cup of coffee, the vision is to also build connections between farmers, makers and purveyors with guests, foodies and clients.
The menu is rooted in the welcoming traditions of Chef’s childhood. While GTC dishes take inspiration from around the world, the cafe’s sense of hospitality stems from Jose’s home and hearth. His warmth, sophisticated culinary approach, and commitment to the community are set to shine in every aspect of the Garces Trading Company.
For the menu, look for a strong emphasis for breakfast, lunch and bakery offerings. For the coffee program, GTC will tap Ballard Brands’ own PJ’s Coffee to feature several exclusive GTC signature blends, with additional rotating selections curated by Chef Jose Garces himself. For the bar, each new location for Philadelphia will have a liquor license and offer a full selection of spirits as well as signature cocktails.
Breakfast offerings will feature locally sourced partners, when possible, to promote community connections, and include house-made ensaimadas (Spanish bagels), house-made Spanish pastries, croissants, breakfast sandwiches and tacos, plus yogurts, fruit, quiches, overnight oats and other favorites. Breakfast will be counter service and grab-and-go. Lunch offerings will focus on soups, salads, sandwiches, other handhelds and more.
For exclusive items at the Kimmel location for GTC, look for special items created in partnership with the Kimmel Cultural Campus team, including fresh and changing options for employees, patrons, subscribers and season ticket holders:
Country Ham | Amish butter | baguette
The Standing Ovation
Chicken pot pie | garden peas | root vegetables | puff pastry
Braised Short Rib I Whipped polenta | winter vegetables | horseradish gremolata
Paying tribute to superstar conductor Yannick Nezet-Seguin of The Philadelphia Orchestra, this buttery and intense roast is worthy of a standing ovation.
There will be a pre-theatre pre-fixe menu available during performances on the Kimmel Cultural Campus.
With Chef Jose Garces, something new is always brewing! Look for new exclusive coffees from Chef Jose Garces, including Yannick’s Blend, as listed above, plus:
Redefining Farm to Table
Under the leadership of culinary icon and award-winning chef Jose Garces, Garces Trading Company applies the concept of “Farm to table” in an innovative way by developing Direct Trade relationships with Central American coffee growers.
Chef Garces appropriately named this blend of coffee, El Puente, which means “The Bridge”, as he continues to foster connections between ours and distant farm communities.
Padre e Hijo
“Coffee is home”
Chef Jose Garces understands that coffee is so much more than just a beverage, and Garces Trading Company’s Padre e Hijo is something worth experiencing. To chef, coffee is home. From fond memories of time spent with family to morning meditations, coffee has woven a rich tradition throughout Chef’s life. An easy drinking upright blend, the sweet and smooth Padro e Hijo hopes to become a part of your every day.
This bland of dark and medium roasts is a lively and clean coffee with a toasty aroma, full body and lingering chocolate aftertaste.
All varieties are being served at Garces Trading Company, and all will be available for retail sale in the marketplace in coming weeks.
“We want to give Kimmel guests the opportunity to discover something new and unexpected,” said Garces. “We want to celebrate the culture of food and drink – both local and global – just as the Kimmel celebrates the culture of music and theater. GTC has a strong beverage program, especially tea and coffee, and we want guests to be able to take a piece of that home with them. Whether it’s for their morning coffee or brewing a pot of tea, these products add a bit of drama to a daily caffeine routine.”
Garces Trading Company and its cafe and marketplace creates opportunities for guests to be curious and explore, checking out the latest seasonal merchandise in the cafes, learning more about our farmers and purveyors, or just trying something other than “the usual”—which is the highest compliment a guest can give.
For the new GTC marketplaces, Garces has teamed up with Merchandise Food, a local company that specializes in food retail spaces. Garces has partnered with Merchandise Food at Okatshe in Atlantic City, as well as at the original Garces Trading Company location.
The marketplace grab-and-go offerings includes Garces’ famous lavender truffle honey, salsas, tortilla chips, guacamole, spice blends (with uses and/or recipes), hummus, chocolate bars, chocolate covered espresso beans, signature coffees and much more.
Select highlights include:
Triangle Roasters Craft Chocolate Bars: Made in Philly from ethically sourced, single-origin cocoa beans. We will have bars made from Nicaraguan, Guatemalan and Haitian beans – some pure, dark bars – others blended with hints of coffee and whiskey.
Palacios Chorizo Bites: Made in Spain, these savory chorizo bites are ready to eat right out of the package. A delicious tapa or addition to sandwiches and cheeseboards, they are full of spice and authentic Spanish flavor.
Tamalitoz Mexican Hard Candy: Hailing from Mexico City, Tamalitoz combine traditional European hard candy-making with Mexican fruit flavors – sweet and then a hint of chili salt.
Stroopies Stroopwafels: Made in Lancaster, PA Stroopies make traditional Dutch cookies known as Stroopwafels. These caramel cinnamon treats are great dipped in coffee, tea or on their own.
Icaro Yerba Mate (Local): Yerba Mate is a tea drink that has been enjoyed in South America for hundreds of years as an energizing source of antioxidants packed with vitamins. Icaro is from Baltimore, MD, and their organic sparkling Yerba Mate is brewed from loose leaf ingredients. Three great flavors include Mint, Hibiscus and Lemon Sage.
De La Calle Tepache: Tepache is a centuries-old fermented probiotic beverage made in Mexico with pineapple at its core. Like kombucha – but with a little kick. De La Calle’s flavorful varieties include Ginger Manzana, Watermelon Jalapeno and Tamarind.
Architect Kieran Timberlake and Marguerite Rodgers Interior Design have worked with Chef and the Garces and Kimmel teams to create a welcoming, warm, comfortable and yet stunning new cafe with a vibe and quality that pairs with the talent both in the kitchen and on the stages next door. Design elements were created to be contemporary and driven by purpose, drawing guests in using texture and warmth to create an organic flow through the offerings and areas within.
Materials and furnishings were chosen to complement the existing architecture and redefine the plaza as a destination. Selections are inspired by the vitality and ease of outdoor spaces. Teak is brought indoors and classic outdoor patterns like cabana stripes and cane weaving techniques are reinterpreted in unexpected materials and colors. Textural rugs ground a variety of seating arrangements that are designed for a quick bite at a counter, a full meal with friends and family, or lingering with coffee on a rocking chair watching the activity. Floating above are light fixtures inspired by hydrangea petals, creating intimacy within the grand scale of the plaza. The new space is designed to amplify the artistic energy of the Kimmel while providing a warm and welcoming ambience.
THE BIG PICTURE
GTC’s revival and evolution are part of an exciting period of national expansion by Chef Garces, the Garces Restaurant Group, Ballard Brands and their partnership together under Ideation Hospitality. The revival of Garces Trading Company comes hot on the heels of national expansion plans and franchising for Chef’s beloved Baja-inspired taqueria, Buena Onda.
For Garces fans, 2021 and 2022 has been filled with many exciting surprises, including the grand opening of Buena Onda Rittenhouse, Buena Onda Radnor, Buena Onda Wells Fargo Center, Garces Eats and Garces Trading Company CIRA Centre, plus news of Amada Radnor.