If you haven't had dinner at High Street on Market (308 Market St.) yet (seriously, what are you waiting for?), tomorrow night is the night to do it.
Owner Ellen Yin and chef Eli Kulp are launching a series of Tuesday night friends and family dinners perfect for exploring Fork's thrilling next door neighbor. Beginning at 9 p.m. Eli and company are rolling out a $25 dollar menu that includes three shared plates to start, an entree and a dessert from pastry chef Sam Kincaid. Paul Rodriguez is custom concocting cocktails and choosing wine to pair with the tasting. No word yet on the debut menu but Yin is promising that details for this and future Tuesday night dinners will be revealed via Twitter the day of at noon.
If you've ventured outside of your front door today, well, you are probably in dire need of some cheering up. Gray and slushy, this is the kind of day that is best spent indoors. Here at Meal Ticket we highly suggest making your way over to a.bar (135 S. 18th St.) where they are hosting a day of events celebrating the glorious fortified Spanish wine known as Sherry.
There's a tasting seminar happening right now for industry insiders but the Sherry fun for the public kicks off at 3 p.m with a happy hour featuring $1.50 oysters paired with a wide ranging and not often seen around these parts assortment of Sherries poured by local wine reps for $5 to $10 a glass. So if you're looking to tighten your Olorosso-Amontillado-PX intel, we'd advise you to get there early.
Although a Christmas for Ben might sound like a benefit for an underprivileged child, American Sardine Bar (1800 Federal St.) chef Scott Schroeder is telling us that the dinner is in fact a gift to his buddy, Cheu Noodle Bar's Ben Puchowitz. Growing up Jewish, Puchowitz has never experienced the joy that is Christmas so Schroeder decided to put together a very special pop up dinner in his honor.
The two are going to be cooking together for a limited number (20 to 30) lucky folks upstairs are ASB on December 18th. No word yet on the menu, but Schroeder is promising a very creative, stoner food, family-style menu. Extra special seasonal touches include a toy drive - no, they're not for Ben - all donations go to a South Philadelphia children'e charity and get donors a free beer.
Well, we always love a good BuzzFeed list and this round up of 21 Things You're Only Afraid of if you Live in Philly is pretty spot on (plenty of It's Always Sunny GIFs, too). As you might imagine the list includes plenty of only in Philly edible anomalies like the free hot dogs at Voyeur, a certain incident involving rodents at a certain brunch spot and the never not frustrating state of your liquor laws.
Monday, December 2
Iconic Old City bar Sugar's has shut its doors.
Tuesday, December 3
Malaysian fare comes to 15th Street via Aqua Asian Bistro.
Tickets on sale to the midnight premier of Anchorman 2 complete with beers from The Industry and The P.O.P.E.
Wednesday, December 4
Construction is well underway at former Top Chef-testant Spike Mendelsohn's Good Stuff Eatery in Rittenhouse.
Kevin Sbraga's Southern spot, The Fat Ham, is officially open in University City tonight.
The multiple-course ancient Abruzzese feast known as La Panarda is returning to Le Virtu (1927 East Passyunk Ave.) this Sunday. Chef/madman Joe Cicala is planning on a 10-plus hour tasting complete with wine pairings and "digestion breaks" for a select group of insane intrepid diners. There must be a minimum of 20 courses for a feast to be considered a Panarda but Cicala has doubled the number with his menu clocking in at 40 plates.
Maccheroni with lamb ragu, chestnut gnocchi and braised mutton stew are just a handful of the plates that are going to be served at this day-long affair, certainly not for the faint-of-dining-heart is going to be. The Le Virtu crew will be lighting fire pits in their patio area so that guests can get a bit of fresh air in-between courses.
Think you have what it takes to tackle La Panarda? (Might want to give GQ's recap a read before committing to the meal.) Tickets are going for $250, kind of crazy cheap considering the massive amounts of food and wine that are going to be on the menu. Give 'em a call at 215-271-5626 to reserve your spot at the table.
While we certainly have a special place in our hearts for Federal Donuts, they aren't the only boutique fried chicken option in town anymore. We headed west to Wishbone (4034 Walnut St.) to sample their craft fried chicken menu.
The University City space, a former Lee's Hoagies has been transformed into a really lovely space with exposed brick, rustic exposed beams and some very classy Christmas decor. The menu is brief, a choice of pretzel-crusted white meat tenders and dark thighs and drumsticks or wings paired with a selection of schmancy dipping sauces like chipotle lime mayo and Pommery honey mustard. To round out the meal there are petite seasonal handpies (think pecan, pumpkin and apple) plus a New Hope fountain featuring health(ish) soda options like watermelon cream, Italian lemon and skinny cane cola.
The verdict? The pretzel-crusted tenders were damned good, sort of like a gown up take on chicken fingers and even better with a side of green goddess. We could do without the cloying Thai red curry dipping sauce. And we've got to say we're suckers for the fountain Pennsylvania birch beer.
Yesterday we swung by the newly opened Rittenhouse outpost of Plenty (1602 Spruce St.) and we've got to say that owners Anthony and Damon Mascieri have done wonders with the former jewelry store space. The bi-level space has been outfitted with repurposed warm wood walls, pressed tin ceiling and cozy cafe seating. On the menu are internationally-inspired sandwiches the the Seoul with bulgogi-marinated short rib and pickled daikon and the Oslo with smoked salmon and horseradish-caper-dill cream.
There are also a handful of breakfast sandwiches (think pancetta hash and fried eggs and brisket), pastries, granola and steel cut oatmeal to pair with pour-over coffees from a roaster of local roasters.
December is the most wonderful time of the year for a whole bunch of reasons - holiday parties, twinkling lights, Christmas sweaters and of course, seasonal edibles. After all, it's the only time of year when it's entirely appropriate to indulge in things like eggnog lattes and candy cane everything.
This year Federal Donuts had jumped on the seasonal foodstuffs bandwagon with a threesome of festive new fancies. First up is the Crumberry, a cranberry glazed donut topped with with dried cranberries and a buttery pie shell crumble. Then there's a gingerbread fancy spiked with coffee, cloves, molasses and cinnamon topped off with a cream cheese drizzle. And finally a pumpkin spice latte donut with pumpkin glaze and coffee streusel.