Rather than going with a generic diner staple, he opted to highlight Trolley Car’s selection of less traditional fare. And instead of testing my culinary skills by having me prepare the dish step by step alongside him, Dwight decided to test my gastrointestinal fortitude by feeding me plate after plate of food.
I showed up dressed like an official member of the El Rey wait staff in jeans and a flannel shirt—then stepped inside their kitchen, smelled all the seasoned meats and spicy sauces around me, and watched my hopes of blending in fly right out the window.
Being the generous Italian that he is, Chef Kristian Leuzzi, owner of both Kris and Stogie Joe’s in South Philly, most certainly wasn’t going to let me leave my personalized cooking lesson, or his restaurant, without a solid lunch in my stomach: a braised veal short-rib sandwich with a side of gnocchi.
This past summer, my editor and I decided that it might be interesting to review my family’s Thanksgiving dinner. My mother took it to heart. And as the weeks leading up to the feast ticked by, she put the word out—to my father, to my wife, probably to my 2-year-old daughter—that she was killing herself, literally breaking her back (her words, verbatim) preparing for the big meal.
The classic English brown ale is stylistically unremarkable, so Rogue adds a healthy dose of hazelnut flavoring, giving the brew a rich nutty taste that feels unexpectedly natural.
Blackened snapper found its counterpoint in a creamy vin blanc sauce; perhaps a hair sweeter than I’d prefer, but the jalapeño corn spoon bread and jalapeño corn tartar sauce provided a moderately spicy juxtaposition.
The meatballs, ridiculously tender and oozing from their center with fontina cheese, may as well be religious idols, worthy of worship.
The name is dubious, but the food is mighty good.