PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- At Restaurant Aleksandar, you'll find dishes like short rib pasta described as an elevated Hamburger Helper, scallops with couscous and a vegetable medley, a torched peach and tomato salad and peaches and cream.
Owner, Alkesandar Stojnic says peaches are a common ingredient in Serbian food and drinks so you'll see a lot of the fruit here.
The space used to house the vegan V Street and Wiz Kid restaurants
But when Aleksandar's father-in-law bought the property, he approached him about becoming his own boss.
Aleksandar grew up in Germany, the child of Serbian parents, and his wife has a Polish background.
So when it came to picking s head chef, they needed someone who could pass the pierogi test.
Executive Chef Montana Houston had never actually made pierogis but the family gave his dumplings a 10 out of 10.
And when Montana needed to hire a sous chef, he turned to Ja'mir Wimberly-Cole.
The two have been working together in the kitchen for several years and Montana says they have a similar approach to cooking.
Turns out, it's in their DNA. The two discovered, after starting at Restaurant Aleksander, that they are actually first cousins.
The opening is part of a restaurant renaissance that suggests a COVID comeback in Center City
Michelle Shannon, Center City District's Vice President of Marketing & Communications, says there are 54 restaurants that have opened recently or are coming soon to Center City.
126 S 19th St, Philadelphia, PA 19103