Welcoming Renata's Kitchen as the New Restaurant Operators at Trolley Portal Gardens

Dec 04, 2019 8 days ago

We at University City District are thrilled to announce that Renata’s Kitchen will be the new operators at 3940 Baltimore Avenue, the restaurant space within Trolley Portal Gardens. Kate Steenstra and Yasser Aiq, the co-owners of Renata’s Kitchen, have been serving the neighborhood for six years, and will bring their beloved brunch service, catering, and eventually dinner and bar service to this new, larger location.

This will be the third location for their business, after the original Café Renata at 43rd and Locust closed following a fire, before re-opening as Renata’s Kitchen at 4533 Baltimore Avenue in 2015. The co-owners plan to open at Trolley Portal Gardens early in 2020 with brunch service seven days a week, and eventually extend their hours to include dinner service, plus a full bar with an inventive drink menu. Renata’s will continue offering a mix of Mediterranean and American dishes, with a focus on fresh interpretations of classic brunch and lunch dishes from around the world.

“Seven years ago when we opened our Locust St location, we never could have dreamed of the support, friendship and love that we have received,” says Renata’s co-owner Kate Steenstra. “We cannot wait to share this beautiful space with the community with the same great food and service you've come to know us for.” 

The current Renata’s location at 4533 Baltimore Avenue will also remain open, serving lighter breakfast and lunch menus.

Trolley Portal Gardens, developed by University City District and opened in September of 2018, serves as a beautiful gateway for West Philadelphia trolley passengers and a welcoming public space for neighbors. The site design emphasizes safety and comfort for the estimated 5,000 riders who board or exit trolleys at the Portal each day, plus beautiful landscaping, movable seating, and community events.

“The development of Trolley Portal Gardens was a labor of love for UCD in partnership with the community,” says UCD President Matt Bergheiser. “We’re thrilled to welcome a wonderful neighborhood business, which will thrive at this flagship public space and transit hub.”

Renata’s new, two-story home, owned by Ken Weinstein, President of Philly Office Retail, offers two dining rooms, a liquor license, coolers for take-out beer, an outdoor patio, and a state-of-the-art kitchen. "We are excited to welcome Renata's Kitchen to the Trolley Portal location at 40th and Baltimore," says Weinstein. "They are revered in West Philly and will be a wonderful steward for the carefully designed space we built last year."

University City District and Renata co-owners Katie Steenstra and Yasser Aiq have collaborated since 2015 during the Baltimore Avenue Dollar Stroll, where Renata’s routinely sells out of $1 pieces of Baklava, churros, chicken skewers, and other dollar offerings. UCD is very excited by the marriage of this brand-new restaurant space and a popular, locally-owned business, and collaborations on community-focused events. We look forward to sharing details about an opening date in the very near future.

 

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