Picnic, an 11,200 sq. ft. Restaurant is Slated to Open Early July and Will Feature a Wine Shop and Picnic Atmosphere - Wooder Ice
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Picnic, an 11,200 sq. ft. Restaurant is Slated to Open Early July and Will Feature a Wine Shop and Picnic Atmosphere

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Picnic, an 11,200 sq. ft. Restaurant is Slated to Open Early July and Will Feature a Wine Shop and Picnic Atmosphere

Picnic, an 11,200 sq. ft. Restaurant is Slated to Open Early July and Will Feature a Wine Shop and Picnic Atmosphere

On July 3rd Defined Hospitality, the team behind Kalaya, Suraya, Beddia, Condesa, El Techo, and R&D Cocktail Bar, will open the doors to their seventh restaurant Picnic (2421 Martha St.) This massive 11,200 square-foot restaurant located in a completely restored historic building will feature a wine shop and a picnic-like atmosphere.

An idea that was conceived during the Spring of 2022, the restaurant is being opened by partners Greg Root, Al Lucas, Nick Kennedy, David Reuter, and Roland Kassis, along with Joe Beddia, who is a strategic partner and creative advisor to the business. Picnic will feature 225 indoor seats, which includes a mezzanine that can accommodate between 40-50 people. There’s also a pair of private dining spaces (which will become available later this summer), a giant walk-up bar, some communal seating, and a stage for live entertainment.

“Anyone who works in hospitality who has been to Bacchanal in New Orleans wants to do their own version of that,” said Beddia. “It’s simple, convivial, and with a focus on a kind of laid-back quality. Fun for everyone.”

“There will be a lot of theater when you enter,” said Root. “As you enter, you will find yourself in the wine shop framed by the exposed kitchen featuring the rotisserie and oyster bar. You exit the wine shop into the uniquely designed dining area with 40-foot-high ceilings, skylights, lots of greenery, and a mezzanine that overlooks the whole scene.”

“The idea is that you’re stopping at the wine shop on the way to a picnic. The wine shop is meant to act like a live wine list,” added Lucas. “Service will be low-touch, but the team will be ready with high levels of knowledge about the food and wine. A relaxing vibe is the pursuit.”

The Executive Chef is Mark Jerome Hennessey, whose resume includes three years as Chef de Cuisine at Messina Social Club, 3.5 years as the Sous Chef at Helm, and time spent at Condesa during its opening. “I really took a liking to how Defined Hospitality ran their restaurants, and I kept an open relationship with Greg, Al, and Nick over the years,” said Hennessey. “This was the perfect opportunity to re-join the team.”

“The equipment star of the kitchen is a wood-fired rotisserie, which will initially be used for roasting whole chickens, but eventually will be utilized for lamb, pork, vegetables, and more,” said Kennedy. “Fresh, regional products, including an oyster program in partnership with Fishtown Seafood, as well as other products based upon other farms and producers’ expertise, will keep the menu rotating and approachable.”

Parties of eight or more can book reservations through Resy, but Picnic will otherwise seat guests on a walk-in basis only.

The beverage program is led by General Manager Aaron Deary, a Co-owner of R&D, and former Beverage Manager of Kalaya. There will be a variety of frozen drinks, draft cocktails, non-alcoholic cocktails, beer, and of course plenty of globally-sourced wine, the majority of which will be priced between the $50 and $70 range.

The century-plus old building is on the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places, and Defined Hospitality recently applied for status on the National Register. While fully restoring this landmark, the team spent a year stabilizing the structure just to be able to preserve the building and begin construction. Stokes Architecture led the restoration, while the interior design was designed by Katherine Lundberg of Briquette Studio. Lundberg gave new life to a cherished relic of the past — a historical building erected in 1890 as the thriving industrial hub of Weisbrod & Hess Brewery.

“This imaginative milieu renders a completely approachable, yet captivating space where all are welcome to enjoy the long-awaited and highly anticipated revitalization of this historic building – an eclectic space truly designed for people and nostalgic merrymaking,” said Lundberg.

Picnic will be open seven days a week, with the kitchen operating from 5 to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 5 to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 4 to 9 p.m. on Sunday. The bar and wine shop will be open daily from 5 p.m. until “late,” opening at 4 p.m. on Sunday. In the coming weeks, Picnic will open at noon on Saturdays and Sundays, remaining open throughout the day with the same all-day menu served in the evening.


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