Author: tkurek

Amis (The Feast of the Seven Fishes)

The feast of the seven fishes is an Catholic Italian-American tradition that goes back generations. Although as a Catholic Italian-American growing up my family never partook  in this tradition, but I knew of many families that did. This may have been because growing up we spent Christmas Eve on my Dad’s side of the family and celebrated Wigilia (I will have to do a Wigilia post in the future), which let me tell you fitting 60 polish people in a row house in Chester is a hell of loud and crazy time and Christmas Day with my Mom’s side, the Italian side. For a deep dive into the seven fishes celebration in Philly you will find a great piece by Danya Henninger of Billy Penn here. This year I decided to check out the feast of seven fishes for the first time, I could only go on the 23rd though since I had family parties on Christmas Eve, so I headed down to my favorite Roman style restaurant Amis.  I ended up getting a seat …

La Panarda Feast at Le Virtu

I have never ran a marathon and I never plan on running a marathon, I just don’t get how running is fun. To tell you the truth I look at people that run marathons the same way they look at me, crazy. But after La Panarda, I do understand the strategy that has to be used to finish a marathon. 40 courses, almost half served family style and 9 variety of wines that conservatively I will say I had about 2 glasses of each. This marathon is unlike any other though, if you can imagine with me for a second running 16 miles on a flat surface and then the rest of the way dealing with an uphill climb to finish, that is how the pasta and meat courses at the end of this awesome extravaganza feel. So I don’t bore you I will describe only the dishes that were can’t miss in my opinion and that is still too many and the others were right behind. It was a beautiful fall day for a …

Scratch Biscuits

Scratch Biscuits is not the place you go to impress a date about the great brunch options in Philadelphia. I am not writing this to diminish the restaurant because the food is really good, I just want to inform you that the service and interior is basically like a Chipolte, so if you are looking for a quick bite to eat on a weekday or even a weekend looking to get over a hangover and complete the schedule you have planned for the rest of the day this is a good place to go. I ordered a large coffee, which they get from Rival Brothers and I got the build your own biscuit option which I built with eggs, homemade scrapple, garlicky kale and pimento cheese. I also wanted to get the decimated yam fries that are smothered in pimento cheese, crispy bacon and chow chow but unfortunately their fryer was down. The coffee was good but limited in choices and you have to serve it yourself.  The biscuit was delicious, flaky and buttery tasting, …

Whetstone Tavern

It was opening night for Whetstone and I had excited myself into a frenzy about going to try  the new spot opened by Jermy Nolen, the chef of Brauhaus Schmit. So  I justified to myself not cooking the chicken breast in my fridge and instead ventured down to 5th and Bainbridge. The interior design of the building is very classy, it reminded me of a Tavern where you would have seen Nucky Thompson indulging. I sat at the bar and ordered up a Radeberger Pilsner which is a refreshing beer for a hot summer day,  it has an ice cold water taste at first with a slight bitter aftertaste. These are the type of beers you can drink all day.    After a few Radebergers, I decided to ask the bartender for a half-dozen oysters, the  Cape May Salts were the Oyster for the night.  These plump salty oysters tasted so fresh that I might have well just been eating them out of the Delaware Bay. But then again I am a little biased because …

Kraftworks and Stella

It was a beautiful Saturday afternoon and I decided I had to get out of the house so I called up an uberx and ventured down into Fishtown. I decided to go to Kraftwork for brunch. I am a big fan of the inside layout at Kraftworks, brick walls, exposed metal work, it all brings me back to a better time, a less hectic era, one I wish the world would go back to sometimes. To start the day off I got a Vietnamese Iced coffee with Vodka and I tried out the local brew R5 Lager from Doylestown Brewing Company, both of these hit the spot. The R5 is an easy lager, even if you usually are not a lager fan you will most likely like this because it tastes a little lighter.       For brunch I ordered the breakfast cubano which consisted of ham, Gruyere, pork belly, pickles and spicy mustard topped with a sunny side up egg. The cubano was an open face sandwich on top of wheat toast. The salty …

Jamonera

It was Thursday and my friend and I were supposed to play racquetball and then head to our cigar bar, Cappelli Bros Cigar Company. Of course, plans are made to be broken though and since the gym was painting the racquetball courts we decided to head to dinner instead. We chose Jamonera, I love tapas and I love red wine so places like Jamonera are always held to a higher standard for me. As soon as we got there I ordered the Syrah-Garnatxa and stayed with that for the night, as I am a big fan of wine with spicy notes, especially for salty food.    To start we ordered a small plate and an option from the cured meats and cheeses. The  Fava Croquetas that were topped with lump crabmeat, whipped goat cheese and Meyer lemon was our small plates choice. The Fava Croquetas have a very similar taste to a falafel, while the addition of the other elements to the dish led to a creamy, lemony crab taste that made me think this …

American Sardine Bar

Wow, that is the best description I can give about American Sardine Bar. My friends and I decided to go here on a Saturday night and it is a great place to go with a large group of friends. The draft list is top notch and the food is a fusion of all types of ingredients that would cause the biggest stoner you know to be amazed by the creativity that concots these decadent dishes, the menu changes constantly so you almost always have something new to try out if you are an adventurous eater. Hanging out at the Sardine bar, reminds me of hanging out at a small town corner bar, the laid back casual atmosphere encourages you to stay the entire night while drinking, eating and having a good time with friends.    I started with Kenzinger and ordered a bunch of food for everybody to try out (must admit I ended up eating a lot of it myself though.) First up was the beer mussels, these mussels were some of the largest …