Fine Dining Enters Ville with Rudi’s on Park

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

Photo by Brendan Work

Rudi's on Park, Swarthmore's new fine dining restaurant, held its grand opening this past weekend. It is located at the far end of the Park Avenue business district, in what used to be a private residence. The conversion from residence to restaurant took 18 months of development.

Photo by Brendan Work

Rudi Doeller and his wife Nancy Doeller, who serves here as hostess and Director of Dining, most recently cooked for the Corinthian Yacht Club, in Essington, PA, and later had their own catering business in Prospect Park, PA. A few Swarthmore residents who were customers of theirs suggested they open a restaurant in Swarthmore, which had previously been lacking any similar sort of fine dining experience. They gathered a group of approximately 30 local investors, mostly in Swarthmore, who pooled their funds and resources to bring Rudi's into existence.

Photo by Brendan Work

The standard fare at Rudi's on Park, though not strictly adhering to any particular tradition, is decidedly European in influence; Chef Doeller is a native of Austria, and completed his formal culinary training there. Rudi's offers dinner from 5:30 to 9:30 PM on Tuesday through Saturday (with a $30 prix fixe menu available Tuesday through Thursday), as well as a Sunday brunch from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM. Reservations are strongly recommended, and Rudi's is a BYOB establishment.

Photo by Brendan Work

Rudi's on Park hopes to be a resource for Swarthmore College as well as local residents. Though likely not a daily dining option for most students, it can be a place to have a special occasion or romantic date when Sharples won't suffice, or a place for departments to take visiting lecturers that is closer than Springfield or Media. Rudi's is also employing several Swarthmore students as wait staff, and may hire more as the need arises.

For more menus and further information, check out their website.

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