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Avalon in West Chester

sal_acid Aug 29, 2012 05:04 AM

With Gilmore's gone I was looking for a new place to get a meal in the West Chester area and stumbled upon Avalon. Its a BYO on High St that serves slightly Italian inflected food. I had a really good meal there last night.

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    danbee1 RE: sal_acid Aug 30, 2012 06:15 AM

    Best place around. Wonderfull food - bring a good wine to go with it. Pricey but worth it. They only take cash but there's an on-site ATM.

    15 Replies
    1. re: danbee1
      sal_acid RE: danbee1 Aug 30, 2012 06:40 AM

      Yeah. That was the one weird thing. I never like that. Take my plastic and raise prices by 5% or whatever the fee is. I always wonder if tricky accounting is going on when plastic is refused.

      1. re: danbee1
        CindyJ RE: danbee1 Aug 30, 2012 02:42 PM

        I like Avalon a lot, and I have dinner there fairly often. They actually will accept credit cards if you ask. They'll also accept personal checks. I don't think they have that ATM in the lobby any more.

        1. re: CindyJ
          arepo RE: CindyJ Aug 31, 2012 10:21 AM

          Of course it cannot begin to be compared with the deceased Gilmores, but it is a nice BYOB in the West Chester area.
          The "cash only" discouraged our group from going back, so what do you mean by "they accept credit cards if you ask?" Which is it?

          1. re: arepo
            leepinleemur RE: arepo Aug 31, 2012 11:45 AM

            The menu on the website reads "Cash/Check Preferred", so presumably they do take cards now.

            1. re: leepinleemur
              CindyJ RE: leepinleemur Sep 1, 2012 07:03 AM

              That's exactly right. They prefer that you pay cash, but they'll accept credit cards.

            2. re: arepo
              sal_acid RE: arepo Sep 1, 2012 03:39 PM

              There was slippage at Gilmore's towards the end. A nutella dessert?

              1. re: sal_acid
                arepo RE: sal_acid Sep 2, 2012 09:39 AM

                What is a nutella dessert?
                I kind of suspected trouble the minute they abandoned Open Table. That seemed a bizarre move to me. And I am the worse for it because I truly loved that place.

                1. re: arepo
                  sal_acid RE: arepo Sep 2, 2012 02:03 PM

                  It was a dessert with nutella in it. I didn't try it. The menu description sounded like the kind of crap Sandra Lee makes. It was way out of character.

                  Yeah, more than one beloved place has dropped OT and then closed in a month or two. Bad sign.

                  1. re: sal_acid
                    cwdonald RE: sal_acid Sep 2, 2012 02:52 PM

                    It is interesting to wacht competitors come in and try to undercut OT, which means they are trying to mnimize cost. I know FISH is no longer on OT. I wonder if the better strategy for a restaurant is to use both, or perhaps that is not cost effective. I think for restaurants to beat OT they are going to have to band together...

                    Gilmores used some other strategies to try to induce demand, lower prix fixe was one thing. I do think though the lack of ability to book on OT was a contributin factor.

                    1. re: cwdonald
                      JanR RE: cwdonald Sep 3, 2012 04:56 AM

                      I think Stephanie and Richard's departures were a factor. I still loved Gilmores but it wasn't the same after they left.

                      1. re: JanR
                        arepo RE: JanR Sep 3, 2012 10:31 AM

                        Where did Richard ever go? He was our "regular" waitperson. He was professional personified.

                        1. re: arepo
                          JanR RE: arepo Sep 3, 2012 11:20 AM

                          Limoncello, last I heard.

                          1. re: JanR
                            CindyJ RE: JanR Sep 3, 2012 02:38 PM

                            That's what I heard, too.

                        2. re: JanR
                          sal_acid RE: JanR Sep 3, 2012 04:28 PM


                          1. re: sal_acid
                            arepo RE: sal_acid Sep 4, 2012 07:32 PM


          2. sal_acid RE: sal_acid Oct 17, 2012 05:03 AM

            Got back to Avalon last night. Still great. Arrancini app, entree was pork roast on spiced red cabbage, cheese to finish. There were lots of dishes I wanted to try on the menu, esp the lamb bolognese. Gotta get back there.

            They took a credit card with no questions.

            1 Reply
            1. re: sal_acid
              arepo RE: sal_acid Oct 17, 2012 01:48 PM

              If they took a credit card with no questions asked, why on earth do they even bother stating "cash preferred?"
              How many diners would prefer to pay for their meals with cash?

            2. CindyJ RE: sal_acid Oct 27, 2012 10:04 AM

              I was at Avalon for dinner last night. We shared the fried mozzarella Caprese appetizer. For my entree I had a pan seared duck breast served over braised cabbage and topped with pomegranate molasses and some kind of fruit (plum, maybe) reduction. And then we shared a cheese platter with accompaniments for dessert. I really do enjoy Avalon.

              I wanted to mention that now, right on the menu, it says that they accept Visa, MasterCard, AmEx, etc.

              2 Replies
              1. re: CindyJ
                sal_acid RE: CindyJ Jan 10, 2013 07:10 PM

                Avalon tonight for dinner. Arancini, then veal agneloti in a rich veal demi which was really good and a main of braised short ribs....cheese to finish.

                After several meals there I think it actually compares favorably to the late Gilmore's (and I was a fan of G's...probably ate there 30 times over the years). It is not cramped as G's was; there's outdoor dining in good weather.The food is a bit more modern, and Italian -inflected. The menu has more variety and seems to change a bit more frequently. Every dish I've had has been truly good.

                1. re: sal_acid
                  CindyJ RE: sal_acid Jan 11, 2013 09:53 AM

                  Okay sal_acid, you've whet my appetite. I think I may head there for dinner tonight.

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