The College Metropolis restaurant Pod reopened as KPod on Feb. 9 immediately after practically two yrs of becoming shut down because of to the pandemic.
Credit rating: Anna Vazhaeparambil

Pod — a University Metropolis cafe popular for its Pan-Asian delicacies and futuristic environment — has reopened with a new title and a new menu.

Restaurateur Stephen Starr reopened Pod as KPod on Feb. 9 after pretty much two years of a COVID-19 pandemic-induced shutdown, The Philadelphia Inquirer noted. Influenced by the “K wave” of Korean audio, fashion, and lifestyle in Western existence, KPod — found at The Inn at Penn — seeks to rejoice and check out Korean delicacies.

Chef Peter Serpico, drawing upon his Korean American qualifications, has reimagined classic South Korean dishes for the menu, the Inquirer noted.

KPod’s menu functions standard Korean foods such as mandu (Korean dumplings), rice cakes, banchan, and bibimbap, in addition to American dishes this sort of as shrimp cocktails and wedge salads. Serpico also seeks to blend Korean and American flavors, supplying dishes these types of as a grilled pork chop with kimchi and brown butter.

Serpico, the former second-in-command for New York Metropolis-based restaurateur David Chang, relocated to Philadelphia in 2012 to collaborate with Starr on his other cafe, Serpico, an upscale American cafe in South Philadelphia.

By his partnership with Serpico, Starr intends for “something new and fresh new … that brings a stage of attractiveness to a new inhabitants and some of [Serpico’s] existing client base that existed prior to the pandemic,” Penn’s Government Director of Real Estate Ed Datz claimed.

Together with the revised menu, KPod has a new design and style, changing Pod’s futuristic white lacquer home furniture with earth tones and brown wood accents. KPod will continue on to offer Pod’s 3 “pods” — popular semiprivate eating rooms — with LED patron-managed colored lights, the Inquirer described.

Furthermore, KPod replaced Pod’s revolving sushi conveyor belt with a Korean-encouraged uncooked bar, in accordance to the Inquirer.

STARR Eating places, Starr’s restaurant conglomerate, has been anticipating Pod’s reopening because ahead of the pandemic. “The renovation and refresh [was] currently planned,” Datz reported. “It just was literally delayed [by the pandemic].”

Starr initially opened Pod in 2000. In 2018, Pod was named one particular of Philadelphia Magazine’s “5 Restaurants Truly worth Revisiting in University Metropolis.” Originally promoted for upscale suburban crowds, Pod’s charges appealed additional to Penn faculty and workers than students.

STARR Restaurants owns about 30 eating places spanning two continents, like Philadelphia’s Parc in Rittenhouse Sq. and Morimoto in Old City. In 2017, Starr was named “Outstanding Restaurateur” by the James Beard Basis

KPod is located at The Inn at Penn, 3636 Sansom Avenue. The cafe is open from 11:30 a.m.-2:30 . p.m. and 5-10 p.m. Monday via Thursday, 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 5-11 p.m. on Friday, 5-11pm
on Saturday, and 5-10 p.m. on Sunday.

“We hope the college students, college, workers, and the [Penn] community will uncover a put [at KPod] to delight in a superior meal as we arrive out of the pandemic,” reported Datz.