Philly Roundup

I’ve been terrible about blogging lately, but a recent email I drafted to a friend with some recommendations about Japan reminded me that I have so many more things to share from that trip. Which reminded me of some great places we ate in Philly last summer/fall. Which reminded me I haven’t posted any of the amazing pictures from two excellent Asian fusion type meals we also had last summer! So getting back in the saddle!

During a couple recent trips to Philly we had some excellent Italian meals. The beautifully fresh antipasti, deliciously earthy wild mushroom pizza, and the crazy decadent (but still you won’t want to share) salted caramel budino at Barbuzzo are not to be missed.




At the more checkered table cloth style Little Nonna’s opt for classics like garlic bread, a Cesar salad (albeit made with fancy and excellent little gem lettuces and hot polenta crutons), and spaghetti with meatballs.




And for something entirely different Serpico is an excellent and adventurous option. Peter Serpico (formerly of Momofuku Ko, which is still the best birthday dinner I’ve ever had) ( turns out some deliciously creative dishes (and keeps things like excellent mushrooms simple when they need to be). Not to be missed are: some beautiful raw scallops in a buttermilk, chive, and yuzu preperation; deep fried maitaki mushrooms; and a corn ravioli with chorizo, lime, crema, and queso fresco to cut its sweetness. I only regret that we didn’t have room for some of the delicious looking spicy soup that came by and that we didn’t order the tasting menu. Next time …





Postcard from Philly

A couple of weekends ago the Bob and self found ourselves on an ill-fated puppy procuring trip that took us to Philly.  We didn’t get a dog but we got a great deal at the Ritz and had a nice time wandering the city and soaking in the sights and sounds.  I’m looking forward to going back when it’s not so cold!

The really important thing about Philly (aside from our Nation’s history and all that) was the fried chicken at Federal Donuts. The best I’ve had since Ad Hoc I think.  Crunchy skin, tender flavorful meat and a couple neat twists if you’re not a purist (yes, that means they will dust your fried chicken in za’attar if you like). There isn’t much room to sit and not much else on the menu (save some delicious donuts, but only if you get them hot) but trust me after you try this chicken you won’t really want anything else.  Especially not tacos from Loco Pez.  The internet raves about this place. Zagat gives them a 29. I see the words L.A. style tacos when I Google it. One of the owners has family in San Diego. It looks like it’s going to be awesome. The nachos were good.  The refried beans were not. But the real problem was the supposedly great tacos. Over-battered fish isn’t really a good sign.  But the taco full of braised meat claiming to be carne asada? BRAISED.  Not grilled. Yeah screw you. Don’t get my hopes up and then do that to me. So the search for tacos continues …