Archive: December, 2012
Buttercream Cupcake, the truck that started it all, is opening a cafe, according to their website. Owner/baker Kate Carrara has moved into the sun-washed space formerly occupied by the bellissima Venice Cafe (remember when we reviewed that) and BYOB Nicholas before it. The cupcake truck will run as usual, with additional baked goods offered in the sit-down shop Tuesday through Sunday. It's a couple weeks out.
On today's Afternoon Snacks, we've got sampling at the newest Foodery, New Year's taco deals, and one last call to action for some NYE parties.
Lucky Roxborough: you just got your own Foodery (6148 Ridge Pk.)! The new outpost just opened its doors today, and to kick things off, a rep from Flying Fish will be dropping by tonight from 5 to 7 p.m. passing around samples to sip as you check out the new space and crazy bottle selection.
Over at Fightland, Vice's MMA blog, Stefan Kamph is out in King of Prussia where chefs Marc Vetri, Brad Spence and Jeff Michaud are boning up on their Brazilian jiu-jitsu.
The trio started training a few years back as a team building exercise and it's become a bi-weekly affair with Vetri's two young sons getting in on the action.
When asked about the similarities between cooking and fighting, Michaud, who also boxes, has this to say:
“Learning how to do things, you need to know the basics,” he says. “You can’t just start putting arm bars and triangle chokes on people before you know how to move your hips, just like you can’t cook a duck-liver terrine before you know how to sauté an onion.”
Head on over to Flightland and check it out, it's a good read.
Well that was fast. Last we spoke to chef Marshall Green, he was closing bacon-and-egg xanadu Cafe Estelle and taking a long, well-deserved break from the industry. Over the holiday, Michael Klein reported Green is back in the kitchen, this time at the old Jerry's Bar, a shuttered shot-and-beer dive in the throes of a NoLibs-friendly rehab around the corner from Standard Tap. (Naked Philly has some pix) Someone close to Green floated the news past us recently, but we kept mum per Green's request. "IT IS GOING TO BE GREAT," was all the back-in-business chef would say. We're hearing dinner nightly, and naturally, brunch to come.
In this week's South Philly Review Phyllis Stein-Novack files a puzzling review of Rittenhouse stunner Vernick (2031 Walnut St.) The holiday season is a difficult time to score a prime reservation so PSN and husband Edward cozied up to Vernick's bar for their meal.
The evening began with martinis and small plates (a term that PSN is not a fan of): steak tartare, a dish that was perfectly seasoned but lacking wow factor. Smoky eggplant and chanterelles resulted in a delicious culinary marriage.
For mains a wood-fired seafood bake was ordered and thoroughly enjoyed. Vernick's take on the bake was the finest version of fish stew that she's had in recent memory although it was lacking slices of toasted bread for sopping.
Pecan pie with a scoop of coffee ice cream brought smiles as did the blueberry pie.
A stickler for proper lighting, PSN was pleased with the fact that she could read the menu and get a good look at the food on her plate. Service was as professional as it should be in a restaurant of this calibre.
Price points were brought up more than a few times in the review and her dinner for two came to $200. And while PSN awarded Vernick a very good three tips of the toque she walked away from her meal feeling that something was missing. Hmm...
With just a few days left before the end of the year Star Chefs sat down with a few local food and beverage folks to talk New Year's resolutions.
Al Sotack of Franklin Mortgage and Lemon Hill is resigning himself to upping his organizational skills through the thrilling world of Excel spreadsheets. He's hoping to have the geekiest cocktail/spirit guide by this time next year.
Tria wine director Michael McCaulley has plans to keep top notch service in 2013: "we are not cutting a damn penny from our training program. In fact, we're working to make it bigger, better, and more bad ass. Happy New Year!"
Kevin Sbraga's plans for the new year include growing his team. He wants all of his cooks to not only cook but think like chefs, lead a team, develop new menu items and keep the guests in mind.
For more resolutions from The Mildred, Russet and Matyson head on over to Star Chefs.
The good folks over at Grub Street have put together a downright hilarious list of made-up food words and we thought we'd share some favorites with you. Highlights of the list include bitterati, the mustachio-ed mixologist shaking up gin-spiked shrubs at your local cocktail den, faux-raging or those hand picked hen of the woods mushrooms from your local fancy food market are grow wild alright but we're not about to call them hand-foraged. And possibly our favorite new food term of 2012: "make it snow" or to shave copious quantities of white truffles over a dish. Head on over to Grub for the full rundown.
A big round of applause for George Sabatino and his crew at Stateside (1536 East Passyunk Ave.) They've just landed the number on spot on Philadelphia Magazine's 50 best restaurant list. Honestly, we're not too surprised with Stateside taking home the gold, it's been quite the year of accolades for the new East Passyunk spot with Sabatino winning the Hop Chef competition and earning the title of Best Chef in Philly. Looks like we might have to celebrate Stateside's victory with some smoked pork rillettes and a Sazerac.
Head on over to Foobooz for the full list of the city's top 50!
The tap lines at Alla Spina (1410 Mt. Vernon St.) are usually home to a worldly selection of brews but from today until New Year's Eve they're going local with a menu of 22 beers from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and New York. This selection of close to home pours includes some real gems like Dock Street's Nino's Prickly Pear, a Sicilian-inspired biere de garde, Dogfish Head Birra Etrusca, a wheat beer brewed with pomegranate and hazelnuts, and Stillwater Lower Dens, a collaboration between the Baltimore brewery and the Jana Hunter fronted dreamy psych outfit.
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