Salt-baked squid, Lee How Fook
$10.95. 219 N. 11th St.
Smoked coconut club, Memphis Taproom
$8. 2331 E. Cumberland St.
Grilled lemon-garlic tofu and smoked coconut sandwich.
Whiskey doughnuts, Johnny Brenda’s
$2. 1201 N. Frankford Ave.
House-made brunch special.
The Gustaio, Paesano’s
$9. 152 W. Girard Ave.
The Gustaio is a perfect and unexpected match of lamb sausage with dried cherry mustarda, gorgonzola spread, roasted fennel and arugula, I can’t explain it; it’s so good it makes me confused. -Daniel McLaughlin, thethirteenthdiet.com
Godzilla roll, Umai Umai
$16. 533 N. 22nd St.
“The Godzilla roll is crab tempura wrapped in sticky rice and topped with sliced strawberries, avocado, macadamia nuts, and honey drizzle. This monstrous roll is distinguished by visual stimulation—It’s pretty sexy, but also the textural contrasts at play. Umai is a cozy BYO—so bring a bottle of champers or a spritzy white ale like Hitachino to pair. -Suzanne Woods, beerlass.com
Tea leaf salad, Rangoon
$8.50. 112 N. Ninth St.
“This is the only spot I know of to get traditional Burmese green tea leaf salad in Philly. When done right, the bitter, uber-funky tea leaves plus the nuttiness and crunch of the peanuts and the freshness of the cilantro and lime creates an intense contrast of flavor and texture that is like nothing else in the world." -Jamie, midtownlunch.com/philadelphia
Flounder Hoagie, 16th Street Seafood
$5. 1542 Tasker St.
Pierogies, Czerw’s Kielbasy (Polish)
$7 per dozen. 3370 Tilton St.
“As your prototypical Philadelphia lapsed-Catholic mutt, I can lay claim to three distinct ethnic foodways: Italian, Irish and Polish. Since tubular meats are not really my thing, pierogies became my fallback favorite for Eastern European eating. A package of the stuffed dumplings from Czerw’s is my yardstick for pierogie perfection. Pan-fried in plenty of butter with onions, the farmers cheese-and-potato combination is the most authentic Polish bite in town. The cheesesteak or buffalo chicken versions are less timeless but just as tasty.” -Felicia D’Ambrosio, Philly community manager for Yelp.com
Phnom Penh noodles, New Phnom Penh (Cambodian)
$5.75. 2301 S. Seventh St.
Beef randang, Hardena (Indonesian)
$7-$9. 1754 S. Hicks St.
Kebabs, Divan’s Turkish Kitchen
$10-$12. 918 S. 22nd St.
“My experiences at Divan’s have always been consistently fresh and delicious on account of their authenticity delivered through simplicity. Ilker, the owner, explained once that he was motivated to open a restaurant after discovering Philly’s deficiency in authentic Turkish cuisine. I’m always pleased with all the grilled meat there for that simplicity.” -Mike Geno, foodie-group.blogspot.com
Jja jang myun, Tae Hwa Kwan (Korean)
$5. 5201 N. Fifth St.
Tomato pie, Tacconelli’s Pizzeria (Philadelphian)
$15-$30. 2604 E. Somerset St.
Canelés, Market Day Canelé (French)
$1. various locations.
America's demands for "bigger, faster, cheaper" usually negate authenticity, requiring cut corners that fit factory-sized orders. Market Day's caneles follow the rules of original recipes from Bordeaux. They are small, laborious and expensive to bake, making it worth the splurge to leave them in the hands of an expert. -Tara Desmond, crumbsonmykeyboard.com
Dan dan noodles, Han Dynasty (Szechuan)
$7.95. 108 Chestnut St.
Seitan Cheesesteak, Blackbird Pizzeria
$8. 507 S. Sixth St.
“What makes this faux version of Philly’s precious sandwich the best? The peppers, onions and mushrooms coated in Daiya vegan cheese help, but it’s the thinly sliced seitan that nails it—seitan became popular when local producer Ray’s introduced it to the East Coast.” -Kelly Phillips, livingonthevedge.net
Stuffed cabbage, Jovan’s Place (Yugoslavian/Serbian)
$7. 2327 E. York St.
Marinated cabbage, hand-rolled and stuffed with deliciousness.
Fried oysters with chicken salad, Oyster House (Philadelphian)
$13. 1516 Sansom St.
“Philadelphia’s gastronomical odd couple of chicken salad and fried oysters, according to Craig LaBan, dates back to a time when chicken was expensive and the Delaware River overflowed with oysters. Some thrifty restaurateur added fried oysters to the plate so he didn’t have to use as much chicken salad. A bit more history—it was a Philadelphia chef, L. F. Mazzetti, who perfected oyster frying.” -Holly Moore, HollyEats.com
Garces Trading Company's wine boutique is the first and only one of its kind in the state established by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, and a concept that’s stirred up a ton of resentment among Philadelphia restaurateurs this year.
Even more people are interested in old-school butchers, not just for their exotic specialty meats, but for the local and organic. Many of D’Angelo’s customers are younger people, entranced by shows on the Food Network, who want to explore gourmet cooking.
“We debated if we could financially maintain an all-vegan place or if we should compromise our beliefs and go into work everyday to look at fucking milk in the fridge."
Daniel McLaughlin wants you to diet. But first, he wants to change your understanding of “diet” from something Cathy shrieks about in the funny pages to something easy—from temporary OCD agony to a natural way of life. But which way?
Bittman doesn’t suggest eliminating meat, or white flour, or sugar, or any of the so-called “bad” foods from your diet, just eating much less of them. He calls his diet a “Two out of Three Plan” or “Part-Time Vegan” or “Vegan Before Six”; i.e. consuming mostly vegan fare during the day, and then for dinner essentially eating anything you want.
There are several bars in Philly that take classic cocktails very seriously, so we went to chat with a few experts for some tips on making an old-school Old Fashioned (and other classics)—and how not to screw it up.
A 12-ounce can of Pabst Blue Ribbon and a jigger of Jim Beam is known at Bob & Barbara's simply as “the special.” It’ll cost you $3. But where did it come from?
PW's Music Issue 2014