An Old Roost Becomes A New Perch As Varalli Hatches Third Decade - Bringing First Gastropub to Avenue of the Arts

Perch Beer List Now Tops 104

Lunch, Weekend Brunch to Begin in April

Mar 21, 2011, 13:33 ET from Perch Pub

PHILADELPHIA, March 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Food and hospitality veteran Joe Varalli, who opened his first restaurant, Upstares at Varalli, 22 years ago at the age of 25 and established Sotto, the first seafood restaurant on the Avenue of the Arts ten years later, now hatches a new vision and venue for a new generation and a warm and relaxing home for neighborhood brew-lovers -- Perch Pub. To make way for the new concept, he has merged Upstares at Varalli with Sotto Varalli into his ground floor space which will now be known simply as VARALLI with the continued focus on Northern Italian cuisine and seafood.  

Taking the place of the former Upstares, Perch Pub -- a name reflecting an elevated place for resting or sitting in a prominent location -- offers patrons a perfect spot to kick back and 'roost' above Broad and Locust Streets with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking Philadelphia's Avenue of the Arts. Featuring an extensive local selection of craft beers on tap, a full bar and an American-inspired menu of comfort food, Perch's space has been renovated into a comfortable, relaxed, unpretentious pub. The interior has a timeless feel, with rich mahogany finishes complimented by large areas of glass windows, exposed brick and metal beams, and an ever-changing glass mosaic in the main dining room.  In addition to boasting one of the best birds-eye views in the city for people watching, the pub offers separate areas for a pool table and dart board and features additional amenities including a juke box, HDTVs and a large drop-down projection screen in the main dining room for watching major sports events.

Now open at 4PM seven days a week with plans to add both Monday through Friday lunch and Saturday / Sunday brunch in April, Perch Pub promises pub grub excellence with CIA graduate Chef Bill Carroll at the helm. Not your average pub menu, starters include traditional appetizers such as Blue Bay garlic mussels, a soup and an oyster of the day, plus unique bar snacks including fried sticks of malanga and Bird Seed (spicy fried black eyed peas); melts such as rib eye / portobello Scotch Filet and short rib/cheddar Jacob's Ladder; Build-Your-Own burgers with a LaFrieda-blended patty and housemade pickles; Baja Fish and Pig Latin tacos, and entrees such as beer-battered wild haddock with fries and a wild boar ragu with rigatoni.  

The tap list keeps it nice and local within a 151 mile radius from Center City, with 12 featured drafts changing daily. The extensive bottle and can list currently stands at 104 and counting. A prominent selection of bourbons, whiskeys, and Scotches (including house-infusions) are also featured.

Quoting Picasso, Varalli says, "'It takes a long time to grow young.' Over the last two decades I've watched the city's dining scene grow seemingly faster than the tech bubble. Much of this has been driven by a new generation of patrons. They are very food-savvy and enjoy their beer, wine and cocktails and are not cuisine- specific. At Perch Pub, one patron may be enjoying a braised lamb shank while another at the same table is savoring a taco. I felt it was time for a change; time to expose my unique second floor location to a new flock."

For further information and reservations, visit or call 215-546-4090. For press information or interviews, please call Nina Zucker Associates at 610.667.0706 or email or Joe Varalli at 215-680-6998 or by email at    

SOURCE Perch Pub