After next Saturday’s service, Il Pittore, Stephen Starr and Chris Painter's Northern Italian restaurant in Rittenhouse Square, will be no more. The news may come as a surprise considering the immediate success of Painter's semi-eponymous restaurant, earning three bells from the Inquirer, three stars from Philadelphia magazine, and landing every issue of the 50 Best Restaurants since its opening.
Painter was a major player in the Starr Restaurant Organization, for years positioned as the company's corporate chef before partnering up with Starr to open a restaurant of his own. Now, after almost four years of great success, Painter has decided to leave the company to start his own Starr-less venture elsewhere in Philadelphia.
As for Il Pittore's staff, the company has offered them relocation opportunities within the group. The building itself is still Starr-owned, and there are plans already in the works to re-conceptualize the bi-level space.