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Sep 15, 2011 08:41 AM

Pescatore Bala Cynwyd

Has anyone tried out Pescatore BYOB in Bala Cynwyd? It is in the spot of the old Avril across from the theater. I drove by it today on my way to work and it looks appealing. Owner/chef is part of the Anastasi family that owns the seafood market at the Italian Market so I'm assuming their seafood is fresh and good.

What also looks appealing is the new Viet/Thai restaurant next to Pescatore....I'm heading there for lunch today to see if it's any good. Will let you guys know.

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  1. Just got done eating lunch from Pa Pa Viet/Thai Restaurant in Bala. Not much to look at inside, but they had a decent lunch crowd for being a new restaurant in the area. VERY nice owners/chef. Both Thai but can speak multiple languages. I think I threw them off by ordering a la carte instead of their lunch menu (which btw, their lunch special is a steal -- appetizer, salad, and entree for 8.99). I had their Bun Thit Nuong Cha Gio (char-grilled pork w/ Spring Roll over Rice Vermicelli). I was somewhat appalled at the price ($10 and change) since I'm used to seeing it everywhere else for around $7-8. It was very flavorful and they actually used the authentic rice noodles that no other Viet restaurant uses. It was thinner than angel hair, which is what you would find in restaurants in Vietnam. Most restaurants in the area use noodles that are slightly thicker.

    Overall, it is definitely worth going to for lunch or take out. I wouldn't suggest going there to eat in, as it is very small and dark. They are still working out the kinks and rearranging the dining area. Again, very nice owners (reminded me like I was going to Chun Hing) and food was decent for what it was. It's no Vietnam Palace/Restaurant or anything down on Washington Ave, but its good enough for me. I'd choose it over Ha Long Bay in Bryn Mawr.

    2 Replies
    1. re: paychecktoday

      paycheck- I have to disagree. I thought the food at Pa& Pa was just awful...we tried it for takeout and ordered many things off the menu, and there was nothing I would go back for. Although a & Pa is very close to where I live, I would rather go to Manayunk for Chabaa Thia or Ardmore for Thai Pepper any day.

      1. re: rocknroll52

        I can't vouch for their Thai food, as I went there for their Vietnamese. I noticed they lean more towards their Thai and not Vietnamese on their menu. I'll check out their Thai section next time, but based on your view, I'm not gonna be expecting too much.

        +1 for Chabaa and Thai Pepper. I need to get back there soon, haven't been there in a while.

    2. Pescatore does look great. Any sense on pricing? That was one key missing on the menu.

      Though with an approach like this it's hard to be anything but enthusiastic: "Our Fish Market portion of the Menu is determined 100% by our Fisherman. All depending on the luck of the rod is what will be delivered to your table. Your server will inform you of today's fresh catch." Not neceasarrily the approach you always find in the 'burbs!

      If I beat everyone there, I'll be sure to report back.

      1 Reply
      1. re: tfalbo

        Yes, I would love to hear more about Pescatore. The website menu is very appealing - particularly for fish lovers. Avril was a very pretty space with very nice owners. Unfortunately, we weren't happy with the food the one time we ate there.

      2. Dinner at Pescatore last night was excellent. The restaurant was 90% full, servers were busy, it was noisy at its height.
        With the unimpressive bread we had freshly shaved cheese and very good pesto for dipping. My wife loves pesto, and says she'll have pasta with pesto the next time we go. Tonight, though, we started with eggplant wrapped around a ricotta filling, with light meat sauce. Excellent, though the cheese overpowered the eggplant.
        Mains were both flat noodle dishes:
        "Homemade Fettuccini Bolognese · Nonna's famous meat sauce, and topped with Ricotta Cheese." - Nonna's sauce was excellent, heavier than the first course's, the noodles done perfectly, the ricotta negligible.
        "Toasted Crab Macaroni & Cheese · Pappardelle Pasta tossed in a Three Cheese Creamy Alfredo Sauce topped with Toasted Crab Meat." Also good, though I get no comfort from Mac&Cheese. All dishes were large, prices were reasonable: $49 including tax but not tip.
        Service was attentive though not relaxing, which is to be expected for a very new place. They do have fish too! We'll have some next time.

        1. First time at Pesacatore- the place was packed and super noisy. They really packed the table into this small space and there is nothing on the walls or floor to buffer the sound.

          On the plus side, the food was good to very good,with the clear standout being the eggplant rollatini appetizer which was absolutely delicious! I can also recommend the mussels appetizer, and the homemade gnocchhi which were very light in texture, and served that night in a slightly spicy tomato sauce.

          Loved the pesto and shaved asiago cheese which was served alongside the bread basket.

          The portions are generous, making this restaurant a good value for price. We had the "restaurant week" menu which was being offered for $30 (appetizer, entree and dessert) which seemed like a real bargain especially considering this is a BYOB.

          Service at Pescatore was friendly though not particularly attentive. We did have to ask for utensils for the dessert, which arrived delayed after we had finished our coffee.

          I would return to Pescatore to try some more of the menu. We didn't choose a fish entree (despite the name of this restaurant, most of the menu is actually not seafood). The fresh fish of the day were salmon and tilapia, neither of which sounded too appealing, and I can buy both in the grocery store.

          Overall, we were satisfied with the meal and would recommend

          1 Reply
          1. re: rocknroll52

            We went to Pescatore last night and loved it. The three fish specials were all very tempting: branzino, striped bass and St. Peter's fish. Also, they seem to have solved the noise problems already. There are fabric panels hanging from the ceiling and we didn't find it particularly noisey. Full review here:

          2. Has anyone been here recently? I'd love to hear what people think of recent trips, and I'm particularly interested in knowing whether others found the noise level difficult to tolerate, as this has been a problem at other restaurants we've been to. Thanks!

            2 Replies
            1. re: Laura D.

              I have been there 3 times so far and am going again in a couple of weeks. It's a really good restaurant for a neighborhoood place and a BYOB to boot.

              Beware that unless you want to hear yourself talk, don't go on a Friday or Saturday night unless it's around 5:30-6.
              (I guess you could say that for almost any really popular restaurant, and this one definitely fits the bill).

              1. re: arepo

                Thanks for the feedback. Any idea whether the crowd (and noise) starts to thin out later in the night, say 9:00pm? We tend to eat on the later side and find that BYOBs often get measurably quieter around this time. Thanks again!