Archive for the ‘Food’ Category

Amy Sedaris Live!

Amy Sedaris will be appearing at Foster’s Homeware (399 Market St.) TODAY. She’ll be cooking with Michael O’Halloran, of Bistro 7, at 5pm. At 6pm, there’s a Q&A with Amy, and at 6:30, there’s a signing of her book, I Like You, newly available in paperback. If I could get in the door, I would. Tickets were sold out as of last week, but there is free limited standing room available. Get in line, now!

Goodbye, Wanamaker’s Cafe

Today  was the last day for the cafe.  The first restaurant inside a department store was in the original Wanamaker’s Grand Depot.

I bought out all their wonderful scones (to freeze) and had their carrot cake for lunch. Wednesday, I had my last tea there, complete with tea sandwiches.  I will miss the cafe…

wanamakers-cafe-bw.jpg

Sonic is Coming!

Sonic, that drive-in wonderland with slushy drinks, big burgers, toasted sandwiches and tater tots, has teased us long enough.

You see, their cheery commercials filled with things that made my tummy cry out in hunger have shown on local stations for so long, but after gloomily reading on their website that the closest location was near Ephrata (before the Morgantown location opened), I gave up. We all did. Should we really drive over 40 miles for a cherry limeade?

No, my friend. Food and Drinq has kindly informed us hungry Philadelphians that Sonic is coming closer to home.

True, there isn’t a proper Philadelphia location opening soon. The new location in Royersford opens today, and stores are set to open in Bensalem and Levittown. Definitely closer than 40 miles.

And more delicious.

Ice cream sodas

What better on a ridiculously hot weekend than ice cream sodas from the fantastic Franklin Fountain?  For those of you who haven’t been there yet (go!), the Fountain is a authentic Victorian-style ice cream parlour at 115 Market Street.

 ice cream sodas

Brunches galore

I am a brunchaholic. See, I used to have a job where I didn’t have off on weekends and holidays, so now I have a “regular” job where I do, and I love to savor every minute of my weekend. Who doesn’t love to sleep in and then get up and eat, basically, enough food to equal 2 meals at a time? For this is what most brunches offer – huge piles of food!

Everyone has their favorites. No doubt about it – Honey’s Sit ‘n Eat and Sabrina’s and Carman’s Country Kitchen are mine. But I’d like to keep trying new places. I love the food at National Mechanics and Johnny Brenda’s, and I hear JB’s has whiskey-soaked doughnuts. I’m positive I’d like their brunch. What’s good in the western/northern/southern part of the city? I’d love suggestions! Name your faves!

More farmer’s markets opening this week

Here’s a great list from yet another food/farm/produce/local food movement website: Farm To City. Not sure why the just re-opened Headhouse Market is not there, but that’s on Sundays from 10-2. If you’re lucky, the openings of these markets might feature cute boys in bands, like Headhouse did. Go outside!

If you know of other markets, please add in your comments!

Greenies

Some people say they’ve got the blues. I’ve got the greens. No only have I realized that I look good in bright green lately, but I’ve also noticed that Philadelphia and this country is finally realizing, hopefully not too late, that we need to go “green.” This is a bandwagon I am happy to jump on. There are so many ways you can reduce your negative environmental impact. As I’m watching “Today,” which is showing me numerous ways you can go green, I get a message from a friend about LocalHarvest, an organization who is educating the masses on how you can learn about and buy locally grown food products. (The Ethicurean is also good!) I started with a lightbulb change (incandescent to compace flourescent). Now I try as hard as possible not to use plastic bags. I’m currently using a tote bag, a granny cart (I’ll be pimping this soon), and reusing bags I already have.

Selling my car was a big decision, but how often did I really need it? If you live and work in the city, why not join Philly CarShare? This May, they’ll be sponsoring a challenge for you Philadelphia drivers to find alternative ways to get around. You can win a bike! (Please don’t ride it on the sidewalk)!

I was out of town after the Philly Spring Clean-up, but have found the results of the largest United States cleaning day in history. This Nutter’s on to something! All major goals were surpassed. Look out for future clean-ups. Here’s a beautifying event, sponsored by Greater Philadelphia Cares.

One final note: Keep your eyes peeled for GreenFest Philly, held on South Street. I haven’t been able to find the date of the event yet, but check back for updates! (September-ish)

Are you an EATER? April 30-May 7

Here’s 8 Days of Eats, which I’ve seen on flyers around South Street on my walk to and from work. Looks like South Street and Headhouse Square will be presenting some tasty deals on some affordable foods. $30 specials! More than 40 restaurants and eateries will be participating. I don’t know about you, but I love eating, and I’m not sure where to start. There’s XoChitl (you must have the margarita), Kildares, Django, Artful Dodger, Bistro Romano (ask for the wine cellar table, but wear a sweater – very romantic), Pad Thai…

There’s a kick-off party, as well, in Headhouse Square (2nd and Lombard): April 29, 7-9 p.m., including menu sampling and refreshments for $10 per person.

p.s. Wednesdays, parking is free! Chow down!

Stay Away Veg*ns: Diner on the Plaza

I spent last Saturday in South Philly, walking around IKEA with my mother while waiting for my car at Strauss. No problems there! Why don’t I treat everyone to dinner? My family suggested the Diner on the Plaza (formerly known as the Dynasty Inn) at Snyder Plaza, and as my father opened the door for us, my mother asked me if I’d be able to find something to eat. My brother and I snickered. It’s a diner, I said. Surely there’d be something for me to eat.

Famous last words.

I scoured the menu. Besides the house salad of iceberg lettuce with tomato, I thought I found the lone meatless entree: classic cheese ravioli in traditional tomato sauce. After asking the waitress what exactly the stuffed rigatoni was stuffed with, and not feeling satisfied by the answer, I settled on the ravioli.

I should have known it didn’t stand a chance. As I prepared to dig into my ravioli with a ferocious hunger, I noticed something as the fork neared my mouth. Ground meat in the sauce!

The menu said nothing, absolutely nothing, about meat in this entree. I called the waitress over and told her I didn’t know there would be meat in the sauce, that I was vegetarian and could I have another order without the sauce? She answered that I would then have to pay for both dinners, so instead of chucking it I asked her just to box it up and my brother would have it for lunch the next day.

Farewell to another Wawa

Center city Wawas seem to be a dying breed. The most recent of several locations to go is the all-important 20th and Locust Wawa. Not only is it essential for the locals, it’s an incredibly popular post-bar spot for snacks and re-hydration. Inebriated masses congregate, consume and leave sated after long nights of drinking. Where will they go now?

Another good question would be, why are all the Wawas closing? According to their PR Department: “The closing of this particular store is not unlike others we have made throughout our 5-state operating area from Chadds Ford, PA to College.” This doesn’t explain a whole lot, and I’m still curious as to why those locations were targeted. The 20th and Locust, in particular, must have brought in quite a bit of revenue.

One of the drawbacks to my current neighborhood is, indeed, the fact that the local Wawa closed last year. The next closest one is over a mile away. It looks like that is to be the case for much of center city as well.

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