The Love, Stephen Starr and Aimee Olexy's newest restaurant, just opened its doors at 18th and Sansom streets, and it’s a beaut. The Rittenhouse restaurant isn't in full operating mode just yet, but it’s now open for dinner and accepting walk-ins or reservations (call 215-433-1555). Online reservations should be available next week, and lunch and brunch service will be added later. This is Starr and Olexy's third collaboration, after Talula's Garden and Talula's Daily on Washington Square. Olexy also owns Talula's Table in Kennett Square. This is Starr’s 20th restaurant in Philly.
The food at The Love is American, executed by chef Joshua Tomaszewski, formerly of A Voce in New York. Seasonality shines in the opening menu, with curry pumpkin soup to start, pastas like ricotta ravioli in a butternut squash sauce and gnudi with toasted chestnut truffle brown butter sauce, and “A Real Meal” category with acorn squash pomodoro, buttermilk fried chicken, and short rib stroganoff.
The wine list, put together by Olexy and sommelier Alexandra Cherniavsky, is a series of mini-lists: sparkling options under Begin With Bubbles, local wines designated Our Friends and Neighbors, splurge bottles given the title Dolla Dolla Bills. After dinner, there are carrot cake and “cracker jax” sundaes, warm drinks (hot buttered rum, Irish coffee), coffee from La Colombe, and a selection of amaro.