Franklin’s Table Food Hall, at 3401 Walnut Street, opened its doors on March 12, after months of construction. The food court–style space, which once housed the Moravian Food Court's Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, and other establishments, now plays host to some of Philly’s hottest eateries in a fast–causal setting.
Franklin's Table was touted by the University in a press release as a new "fresh and local" dining option for Penn's campus.
Some quick facts:
- Pitruco Pizza is owned by the same chefs that run Enjay’s Pizza, the cult favorite served at Smokey Joe’s.
- The DK in DK sushi stands for Double Knot, the trendy downtown Asian fusion spot with a killer happy hour.
- High Street Provisions is owned by High Street on Market, known for their pastries.
- This is Little Baby's second West Philly location; their other store is much farther west at 49th and Baltimore St. They're renowned for their rotating milieu of out–there ice cream flavors, like pizza and earl grey sriracha.
- The Juice Merchant's third location offers all–vegan alternatives and opens at 7am daily for the early morning coffee crowd.
- For vegans, there’s Goldie, a no–animal–product venture from the chefs behind Zahav. And on the other end of the animal–product spectrum, there’s KQ Burgers.
Franklin's Table opens in the wake of the Hamilton Court renovation, promising a slew of new restaurants in a similar food–court style, including BonChon for Korean fried chicken, and I–CE–NY, Thai–style rolled ice cream.
Penn's Facilities and Real Estate Services (FRES), in an email to the Daily Pennsylvanian, stated that Penn's ownership of the building is part of the "Master Plan" for real estate development, also known as Penn Connects 2.0, a long–term series of planned University development over nearly two decades from 2011—2030. Though Penn owns the building, Franklin's Table leases from the University; as such, the food hall will not accept dining dollars.
And in keeping with the "fresh and local" ethos, FRES states that one of Franklin's Table's aims is to house "a vibrant mix of local entrepreneur retailers at a variety of affordable price points." As reported by Philly Eater, the Food Hall's cafeteria–style seating seats around 170 people.The interior design skews modern, with light and airy wood seating and hanging pendulum lamps. Judging by the first day's crowd, 34th and Walnut may be a campus hotspot in the making.
This is a breaking story and will be updated as further details emerge. Make sure to look out for our review of all of the Food Hall restaurants later in the week!