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“small neighborhood restaurant with solid food, a 3.5 star” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Fond

Fond
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Ranked #181 of 4,318 Restaurants in Philadelphia
Price range: $31 - $50
Cuisines: American, International, Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Accepts American Express, Accepts Discover, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Full Bar, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Street Parking, Valet Parking, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible, Wine and Beer
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: Bella Vista / Queen Village
Cross street: Tasker Street
Transit: 2 blocks east from the Broad Street Line - Tasker/Morris stop. Bus route 23 on 12th st to Tasker St.
Description: Fond is a Contemporary American Restaurant, with eclectic flavors & fresh, seasonal ingredients. Run by three friends, guests can expect to feel welcome & relaxed. We now offer a full bar as well as a wine and beer list. We offer BYOB from Tuesday to Thursday, with corkage fee on Friday, Saturday and special holidays. We are located on bustling East Passyunk Avenue in South Philadelphia. Come join Fond for happy hour, every Tuesday thru Friday from 5:30-7:00, BAR ONLY. Fond also has chef's tables that seat 10, that oversee our kitchen where Chef Lee Styer will demonstrate his cooking.
delaware
Level Contributor
82 reviews
52 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
“small neighborhood restaurant with solid food, a 3.5 star”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 29, 2012

I knew Fond is a small restaurant but I was still surprised by how small it is. Basically, two rows of tables with a narrow walkway in the middle (much more crowded than the photo on their website). Tables are located very close together and we felt a bit like dining with strangers on the same table.

The food is pretty good. here are the breakdowns
Foie gras - very good. I enjoyed it
Hamachi tuna - My wife like it. It was a bit too fruity for me, could not taste the flavor of tuna
Octopus paella - very good. Octopus is really tender and tasty
Pork belly - It was different than what I had before. Instead of multi-layers of skin, lean and fat meat, this was a very thick piece of pork meat with crispy skin on top (almost like a pork chop with skin attached). Although the pork was cooked just right, juicy and tender (the skin was chewy), still, it was not what I expected from a pork belly.
French pressed coffee and cannolis were good.

The service was fast (felt somewhat rushed actually, may be due to the crowed space). The menu is small and limited in choice. It is a BYOB and the total cost is about $120 with our own wine.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank nanoDelaware
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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91 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    68
    17
    3
    3
    0
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
32 reviews
23 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Excellent food and service”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 15, 2012

Fond did not disappoint. Fond has come very highly recommended. Most notably, we ate (the evening prior) at a very high end restaurant in Philadelphia and, when we told our server that we were eating at Fond the next night, he offered to contact them on our behalf.

When we arrived we were greeted by our server Steve (notably, Steve was voted the best server in Philly in 2011 by Philadelphia Mag). Steve provided an enjoyable atmosphere (in addition to saving us one of Fond's signature Sweet Breads appetizer - Thanks!) throughout the evening, really made the experience fun, and was very attentive.

Honestly, I would put the food up against just about any restaurant I've had the privilege of visiting. We did not try the tasting menu (although next time I will) but the appetizers and entrees we had were fantastic. Fond is a BYOB so, when you go, make sure you bring something to drink - I'd suggest a bottle of white to start and red for entrees.

The atmosphere was intimate but the flip side of that is that you really need to make a reservation for dinner - it is not very big. I truly have nothing but good things to say about Fond. My compliments to the chef and we will be back soon.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank tmgelsinger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia
Level Contributor
607 reviews
371 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 261 helpful votes
“Underwhelmed”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 22, 2012

Fond has gotten great on-line reviews and so I was very excited to finally try it. East Passyunk is my neighborhood and I love the restaurants here and was excited by the addition.
Postives:
a) Passyunk is fun place to go for the evening. A great south philly vibe.
b) Really interesting sounding menu.
c) BYOB which saves a lot of menu.
d) cute small place
e) Tasty food
f) Very attentive service
Negatives:
a) Really loud in that small place and it wasn't even that crowded. I want a much more relaxing dinner for this price.
b) Menu is pretty small and the specials didn't add much diversity.
c) Very creative sounding menu items, but not that creative in the delivery. Lamb chops were standard as was the potato side and the sauce (I need more for $33). Octupus rissotto was nice and tasty but not innovative enought for $28 and not a fit for the ingrediants.
d) Portions a bit small. Both desert and appetizer were way fussier in presentation than the ingrediants deserved. $16 got three tiny pieces of foie gras.
e) Overpriced. Pure and simple it would be an exciting choice at $18 per entree but its $10 more than that.

Worth the try if you are exploring all of Passyunk, but I'm not rushing back.

  • Visited August 2012
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank PelleasPhiladelphia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
72 reviews
29 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“An Excellent Restaurant”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 26, 2012

For a taste of the best that Philadelphia's lively BYO restaurant scene has to offer head for Fond in the South Philly/Passyunk neighborhood. My wife and I celebtrated our wedding anniversary there and splashed out on the 7-course tasting menu for $65. It was excellent with wide variety of small dishes, each of excellent quality and beautiful to look at. Spicy watermelon soup - tuna tartare - smoked tomato gazpacho - venision terrine - arctic char - beef tenderloin - grapefruit/gin sorbet - three delicious desserts. Each was delicious and left as wanting more. The waitstaff are friendly, attentive and informative. The decor is nothing special but is comfortable, and in no way detracts from the delicious food.

  • Visited July 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank SandyGrim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, NY
Level Contributor
45 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
“Superb”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 26, 2012

Three of us opted for the 5 course tasting menu - a bargain for $55. To get the tasting menu, the whole table must order it. We started with an amuse bouche of mushroom broth and later had a palate cleanser of strawberry lemonade sorbet. The snailcourse were snails served outside the shell with a tripe tomato sauce. Usually I can't abide tripe but the dish was fantastic as was swordfish with paella rice with chorizo and perfectly cooked slices of flatiron steak. The meal was accompanied by the very best sourdough and olive bread we have ever had.

My only complaint was that the 2 servers in the small dining room seemed overwhelmed and we always had to ask to get our water refilled.

The South Phila. neighborhood was charming with an outdoor fountain reminiscent of a European city.

  • Visited May 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Chita44
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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