Philly.com article by Michael Klein, Staff Writer
Mistral, the buzzy, upmarket Princeton bistro, breaks into the Philadelphia market on Wednesday, March 1 with its opening in a prime spot at King of Prussia Mall, at street level beneath Grand Lux Cafe and between Lord & Taylor and Neiman Marcus.
Mistral KOP (160 N. Gulph Rd, King of Prussia, 610-768-1630) is a bold experiment, both for Simon Malls and for Mistral’s partners, Stephen Distler and chef Scott Anderson, who also own the posh Elements in Princeton.
Mistral is a rare independent, chef-driven restaurant, as opposed to the dozens of syndicates that have poured into the King of Prussia scene in the last two years.
Mistral’s cool, open floor plan is built around a square, 18-seat bar, with a small lounge tucked against a window. No tablecloths. Plenty of festive chatter, as observed at a friends-and-family meal earlier in the week. The open kitchen at one end of the dining room is a hive of activity. Outdoor seating will debut in the spring.
The menu, on both for lunch and dinner daily, is a collection of snacks ($6 to $10), small bites ($10 to $15), and entree-size salads and sandwiches ($10 to $16). Five “large bites” serve as entrees (priced at $26 for olive-oil-poached organic salmon to $35 for lamb belly over chickpea panisse). It’s easy to order a few small plates to make a meal.
Anderson, a James Beard Award finalist, hired a former associate, Craig Polignano, as chef de cuisine. Polignano is former executive chef at the Ryland Inn.