Clean, Neutral, and Contemporary while Maintaining a Warm Atmosphere
When I first met with the Vernick’s they had a vision. They wanted a clean, neutral, contemporary feel but they also wanted the atmosphere to be warm and inviting. They chose a space in a building from the 1800’s that had been a two story book store for many years. It was a fantastic space but presented several challenges.
Design Challenges Faced at Vernick Food and Drink?
While the original layout was great for a book store, it really wasn’t functional for the contemporary yet warm look that the Vernick’s wanted. The stairs were in the wrong place to be able to accommodate the bar downstairs and the table plan upstairs. The mechanicals were in the center of the first floor dividing the space. And lastly, the initial space allocated to the kitchen was to small to handle it plus the equipment that was going to reside there.
How did DSGNTeC overcome these challenges?
We used these challenges to our advantage. We created three different experiences for the customer in the restaurant.
- The Bar: The front bar area features a slate and poured concrete bar top with a slick contemporary stairway to the second floor. The stairway was moved from the center of the room to the rear and enhanced with a chandelier that hangs down between the break in the stairs.
- The Chef’s Table: From the bar a short half hall leads to an open kitchen and dining area with exposed brick, gray wood like tile, and blond wood. The experience here is still contemporary but provides you with the opportunity to see one of the premier chefs in Philadelphia in action.
- The Upstairs Dining Area: The second floor, is slick but inviting with gray stained wood floors, blond tables, with black and blond chairs. There is an 18′ upholstered banquette and the owners photography done in sepia on the walls. But the best feature is the retractable doors that open one wall to the outside when weather permits. During the warm months Vernick Food and Drink can take on the atmosphere of a real outside bistro.
In 2013 Vernick Food and Drink was names Philadelphia Restaurant of the Year. While we would love to take credit the real credit goes to Greg Vernick’s amazing cooking. Please stop into his restaurant and let us know what you think of his cooking and the decor.