La Calaca Feliz | Brian Sirhal and Tim Spinner, the Garces Group alums who opened Cantina Feliz in Fort Washington last year, have joined the city's Mexi ranks with La Calaca Feliz (The Happy Skeleton), which debuted in the former Illuminare yesterday. The entire space has been brightened; beautiful mural work by artist Alison Dilworth lends Spanish-speaking character to the 10-stool front bar (50-plus tequilas), open kitchen and back dining room. Chef Lucio Palazzo, late of Xochitl, is doing dishes like nachos, rellenos and tlayudas, or masa-flour Mexican pizzas, in a wood-burning oven; other highlights include vegetarian pozole, Veracruz-style swordfish skewers and chicken enchiladas in mole poblano. They open for dinner daily at 4 p.m. More photos and full menu on Meal Ticket. 2321 Fairmount Ave., 215-787-9930, lacalacafeliz.com.
Grill Fish Café | West Philly's Vietnam location (816 S. 47th St.) now has a fishy little brother — Benny Lai opened this seafood-centric café, actually connected to its larger companion restaurant (they share a liquor license), over the weekend. The menu features straightforward preparations of mussels, shrimp, octopus and squid, plus entrées of salmon, fluke and a regularly rotating whole fish. Dinner's served Tuesday to Sunday from 5 to 10. Photos and full menu on Meal Ticket. 814 S. 47th St., 215-729-7011, grillfishcafe.com.
Sammy Chon's K-Town BBQ | For Sammy Chon, expanding his Korean brand from South Jersey into Chinatown has been a long time coming. Open for lunch and dinner daily, the wide-open operation (79-seat dining room, 20-seat side room) will do the late-night thing to 3 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, with a large but accessible menu of standards (dolsot, noodles, stews) mixed with Chon's playful American diversions (the "Koagie," or bulgogi hoagie). More photos and full menu on Meal Ticket. 911 Race St., 215-574-1778, ktownbbq.com.
Pumpkin (1713 South St.) has completely renovated. Check it out Tuesday to Thursday, when you can take advantage of chef Christopher Kearse's six-course, $65 tasting menu. More photos on Meal Ticket.
Bridgid's (726 N. 24th St.), which has also been renovated, has a new chef: David Clarke, formerly of Osteria and Morimoto. Photos and menu on Meal Ticket.
East Falls' In Riva (4116 Ridge Ave.) has introduced brunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Full menu on Meal Ticket.