Closings: Bisou and Sophia’s
Some restaurants go out with a bang, but sometimes it makes more sense to quietly close up shop. That’s what Clark Gilbert did, shuttering Manayunk’s Bisou after service on Saturday, per The Insider. Gilbert opened the location as Italian-focused Gemelli on Main, then reconceptualized it as a French bistro earlier this year (with awesome bathrooms). Despite all the work he put into it, business never took off. Having chatted with the tenacious chef a few times, we’re betting he’ll be back with something new before we know it.
Sophia’s on East Passyunk has been dark for months, but there was never any firm confirmation that it was actually done for - until Philly Chit Chat chatted with building owner Dana Spain, and she noted a new concept was on the way. Former Striped Bass chef Christopher Lee had returned to Philadelphia to open the restaurant with partner Joe Massara at the very end of 2012, but he wasn’t around very much, and the dining room struggled to gain a regular following. With the buzz of the surrounding neighborhood, though, there’s a good chance that something new will meet with more success.