Thursday, June 30, 2011

Shuckin’ & Grillin’ at Village Belle

Between all the oyster shucking and burger grilling, the staff at Village Belle has a busy weekend ahead of them. It all begins tonight, Thursday June 30, when the second installment of “Behind Belle’s Bar” kicks off at 6pm.

Guest expert Lisa Tiscavitch of Samuels & Sons Seafood, will be shucking oysters and teaching all about the different varieties. On the menu will be Cape May Salts, Blue Points and Beau Soleil from the East Coast and Kumamoto, Effingham, and Drunken Kiss oysters from the West coast.

On Friday & Saturday, July 1 & 2, Village Belle’s Chef’s Joey and Lou Campanaro will be grilling up what has been called The World’s Best Burger, on the lawn outside of the restaurant. Burgers are $8 each, but the view of the fireworks over Penn’s Landing on Saturday is free.

Banana Bombs: Fireworks in a Glass

The latest “Bomb” to join the family has a little sparkle to go with making it the perfect shot for Fourth of July weekend.

Banana Bread Beer
Shot Glass of Chocolate Liquor, Banana Liquor, Irish Cream and 151.
Light it on fire sprinkle cinnamon on the shot, extinguish, drop and enjoy!

The Banana Bomb is available at Jons Bar & Grille. Pretty much because they’re the only ones carrying Banana Bread Beer. So if you find yourself on 3rd & South this holiday weekend, give it a go. $9 each.

Check the video for a full tutorial.

Cuba Libre’s 31 (Daiquiri) Flavors

July is National Daiquiri Month and in honor of this summertime favorite, Old City’s Cuba Libre will be offering a different $10 Daiquiri every day during the month of July. On Hemmingway’s birthday, July 21st, the special Papa Doble is going for just $5. Check the list below and find your favorite.

July 1: Classic Daiquiri
July 2: Coconut & Basil
July 3: Mango
July 4: Havana's Foster
July 5: Pineapple
July 6: Orange
July 7: Watermelon
July 8: Grape
July 9: Guava
July 10: Elderflower
July 11: Kiwi
July 12: Black Cranberry
July 13: Pomegranate
July 14: Guarana
July 15: Raspberry
July 16: Apricot
July 17: Pear
July 18: Strawberry
July 19: National Daiquiri Day, Captain’s Daiquiri (with Falernum and bitters)
July 20: Blueberry
July 21: Hemingway’s 112th Birthday, Papa Doble
July 22: Melon
July 23: Black Cherry
July 24: Lemongrass
July 25: Cucumber
July 26: Vanilla Tea
July 27: Rhubarb
July 28: Lychee
July 29: Grilled Pineapple
July 30: Energy (with a splash of Acai puree)
July 31: Passion Fruit

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Blind Dragons Get Their Eyes

Tonight in Manayunk, the Manayunk Brewery will play host to a Dragon Boat Eye-Dotting Ceremony. At 5pm, guests will hand paint the eyes onto the heads of four, currently blind, new dragon boats.

The Manayunk Dragon Boat Racing Team and the Team USA Dragon Boat Team will be launching four new 10 man boats after the ceremony. These boats will replace those lost in the September 2010 Schuylkill River flash flood.

Tonight’s Farmers Market & Co-Op Happenings

Passyunk Avenue is the place to be for tonight. The Wednesday night Farmer’s Market at the Singing Fountain will be set up at 3pm today, Wednesday June 29. From 3pm – 7pm, at Passyunk and Taster shop for locally grown fruits, vegetables, honey, cut flowers and baked goods.

At 7pm tonight, Wednesday, June 29, The South Philly Food Co-Op will hold its first General Membership meeting to elect its Inaugural Board of Directors at 1729 S. 11th St, in the Passyunk Crossing Civic Association. The South Philly Food Coop will be signing up members during the meeting and all are welcome to attend.

The Food Trust’s Wednesday Night Farmer’s Markets:

Broad & South Farmer’s Market will be open from 2pm – 7pm. Vendors include Hilltop Produce with fruits and veggies, Slow Rise Bakery with organic whole grain breads and gluten-free breads and sweets from Amaranth Gluten-Free Bakery.

Schuylkill River Park Farmer’s Market will be open from 3pm – 7pm at 25th and Spruce. Highland Orchards will be there with fruits and vegetables.

The Village of Arts & Humanities Farmer’s Market will open tonight for the first time at 10th Street at Germantown Avenue from 2pm – 6pm.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Moveable Feast: the Newest Idea in Philly Dining

When it comes to special dinners, there are so many trends in the Philly food scene. Pop-up dinners, wine dinners, beer dinners, farm to table dinners…one might think we have seen them all. But on July 20, Davio’s and the Wine School of Philadelphia are teaming up to bring the Philly foodie something new.

A Moveable Feast; two events, two locations, one ticket price.

The evening will begin at 6pm with a Northern Italian wine tasting at The Wine School of Philadelphia led by Founder Keith Wallace. After that, the event will move on to Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse for a dinner prepared by Chef David Boyle including Braised Beef Shortribs, Sweet Corn Polenta and Heirloom Tomato Salad. The full menu is below.

Tickets to the event are $65.99 per person. A wine flight pairing will be available with dinner for an additional $25.00. Reservations are highly recommended (215-563-4810).

First Course
Hawaiian Tuna Tartar, Avocado, Grapefruit, Baby Greens

Second Course
Heirloom Tomato Salad, Garlic Croutons, Aged Balsamic

Third Course
Braised Beef Short Ribs, Sweet Corn Polenta, Spinach, Thyme Jus

Fourth Course
Key Lime Pie

Catch Waterfront Wednesday’s Last Show of the Season

This Wednesday, June 29, is the final Waterfront Wednesday concert event of the season at Penn Treaty Park. The music has been chosen and the line-up is set. This week, enjoy the sounds of North Lawrence Midnight Singers, Birdie Busch and The Spinning Leaves at Penn Treaty Park at 6:30pm.

The series will be on hold throughout the month of July, but organizers from the non-profit Friends of Penn Treaty Park are planning to pick back up again in August.

Rum Dinner at Cuba Libre

To celebrate its 10th Anniversary, Cuba Libre Philadelphia has partnered up with Bacardi Rum to offer guests a different Daiquiri for all 31 days during the month of July. To kick off the festivities, the Old City location will be hosting a Rum Dinner, this Wednesday, June 29 at 7pm.

Chef Guillermo Pernot will be preparing a four course rum dinner, showcasing a few of the daiquiris and seafood specials that will be featured during the coming month. Tickets are $85 per person and include dinner, drink pairings and a cocktail reception.

If you’re wondering, why seafood and daiquiris, there’s a perfectly simple explanation. It’s in honor of Earnest Hemmingway. The Nobel Prize winning author’s birthday falls during the month. He was one of Cuba’s most notable American inhabitants and his love of deep sea fishing and daiquiris was well known.

It’s also National Daiquiri Month so there’s more reasons than not to celebrate.

This Wednesday’s menu will include

Ceviche de Ostras, oyster ceviche with roasted banana-tamarindo sauce and Tooloom balls; Atún Señor Lopez, Coco Lopez-BACARDÍ Solera rum-glazed blue fin tuna anticuchos with cucumbers, smoked, dried shrimp and roasted peanut salsa; Matambre de Cordero, lamb flank steak roulade stuffed with spinach and carrots served with a warm, Boletus mushroom salad; Serrucho al Escabeche, grilled swordfish fillet, red snapper and black olives escabeche with crispy tomatoes and cilantro-caper aioli; and Piña Asada, vanilla-cardamom-clove-glazed, slow-roasted pineapple served with mango ice cream.

Cuba Libre 10 South 2nd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106 215-627-0666

Monday, June 27, 2011

BYOD Featured in The Bark

When guests stay in Philadelphia’s Kimpton property, the Hotel Palomar, their pets are treated as one of the family. But it’s Square 1682, the hotel’s restaurant, that has taken the furry family experience to a new level—offering Bring Your Own Dog brunches at its outdoor café.

Beginning on June 26, and continuing each Saturday throughout the season, guests, tourists and locals will be able to reserve a table for themselves and their best friends.

Click Here to Read the Whole Story on The Bark!!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Philly Kick's Off 11 Days of Events at Penn's Landing

Catch a ceremonious balloon cutting at the newly expanded gates of festival pier before The Taste of Philadelphia at Penn’s Landing, beginning tonight, Friday, June 24 at 5pm.

There will be music, food trucks and tables with tastes from some of the city’s best chefs. Entertainment and admission are free, but the food does cost.

Check out the waterfront and enjoy a free jazz concert with a performance by contemporary bassist, Gerald Veasley.

PSA: Front & Chestnut streets will be closed until 9am tomorrow morning, Saturday, June 25.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Singing Fountain Re-Dedication & Block Party

The fountain at Passyunk and Tasker has been home to farmers markets, outdoor seating and an iron fence, there to obstruct direct contact or possible vandalism / bathing bums. But over the past few months, the fountain has been revitalized with the removal of the fence and the installation of benches chess tables.

Tonight, Thursday, June 23, the Passyunk Avenue Revitalization Corporation is throwing a rededication / block party to celebrate the grand unveiling. A ceremony will begin at 7pm, followed by a block party from about 8pm – 10pm. And according to, there will be food and drinks compliments of Izumi and Paradiso. Btw, no one calls it that.

Farmers Market & B-Town BBQ at The Marathon Farm

When Marathon Farm officially opened on that rainy cool morning a few months back, its influence in Brewerytown was undeniable. Local politicians, students, and community leaders joined press, investors and the farmers themselves to welcome Marathon Farm to Brewerytown.
Now, just a few months later, Marathon Farm at 27th & Master is growing, not just its produce, but its activities as well.

According to Brewerytown Living, this Saturday, June 25, from 3 – 7pm, Marathon Farm is hosting the first of three neighborhood barbeques with food, shopping and activities for the whole family. Plus, their poster promises an open mic…

The event will take place right after the weekly farmers market that runs from 10am – 2pm and it seems that those looking to sell their handmade goods are welcome to come and set up shop alongside the produce.

Night Market Heads to Mt. Airy

That's right - the increasingly popular Night Market has set its latest destination. Mt Airy!
THe folks from the Food Trust, the non-profit organization who coordinate the Night Market have just released the next locale for their outdoor food fair.

On Thursday, August 4, from 6pm - 10pm, Night Market will roll into Mt. Airy and set up shop on Germantown Avenue from Sedgwick to Mt. Airy Avenue.

This Weekend: WaWa Welcome America, Taste of Philadelphia & Fireworks at Penn's Landing

Ok Philly - prepare for the tourist onslaught. Believe it or not, July 4th celebrations begin tomorrow here in the city. On Friday, June 24, the WaWa Welcome America Festival will kick off 11 days of events and activities.

There will be street closures, lines for cheesesteaks and of course, walking through Center City / Old City will become abominable.

On the bright side, for those of us who live here and simply pass by all the historical sights on our ways to and fro, it may be just the reason we need to slow down and appreciate our fair city.

Start with the three-day long Taste of Philadelphia at Penn’s Landing this Friday, June 24 from 5pm – 9pm, Saturday, June 25 from 11am – 10pm, and Sunday, June 26 from 11am – 7pm. The event has grown so large that it’s now spilling out of the event area and down the Chestnut Street ramp to Front Street.

There will be music, food trucks and tables with tastes from some of the city’s best chefs. Entertainment and admission are free, but the food does cost.

Saturday will also bring the first of three fireworks displays, this one at Penn’s Landing around 9:30pm.

Friday is Take Your Dog to Work Day

Friday, June 24, 2011 is Take Your Dog to Work Day. Since 1999 dog lovers and their accepting employers have been participating in TYDTWD in an effort to celebrate the great companions dogs make and to encourage adoption. Pet Sitters International, an educational association for pet sitters, sponsors the effort.

Locally, PAWS, the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society will be set up with adoptable pets at Hyperion Bank at 2nd & Girard from 11am – 2pm this Friday, June 24. On Saturday, catch them at Rittenhouse Square and on Main Street in Manayunk during the Arts Festival.

With BYOD Brunches launching this Saturday at Square 1682, at The Hotel Palomar, and Operation Ava bringing adoptable pups there, it could be a big weekend for dogs in need all around the area.

But it you already have a dog, and you're planning to bring your dog to work, take a picture and post it to my facebook page – Knowitall Philly.

Why? Because I like dogs. And because I want to see if anyone will actually do it. I’d really like to know how many of you will be participating.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Manayunk Arts Fest: 2 Days & Over 200 Vendors

This weekend, Main Street Manayunk will surrender itself to crafters and artists alike. Over 200 different vendors from 22 different states will be onsite at the 22nd Annual Manayuk Arts Festival, selling their wares to locals, tourists and craft lovers.

On Saturday, June 25 from 11am – 7pm and Sunday June 26 from 11am – 6pm, wander the tents that will be lining Main from Green to Shurs Lane. You won’t have to worry about the the craftsmanship at this arts fest. This is no local yokel gig. The artists were actually screened by “ five notable jurors” to ensure the quality of the arts being offered?...

Parking will probably be horrendous, so skip it if possible and take the R3 Manayunk / Norristown line. Otherwise, there will be shuttles running from 11am – 8pm, and for $3, hot a round trip ride to one of the remote parking locations.

Dollar Tuesday Continues at Yakitori Boy

Of all the nights to sing karaoke, Tuesdays are the best. Why? Its not because drunken mobs of exhibitionists sound better on Tuesdays. It’s that Tuesday nights are $1 Yakitori nights at Yakitori Boy.

Every Tuesday, Yakitori Boy offers $1 Yakitori and $3 Sapporo and if its been a while since you were there, all of the private rooms have been upgraded with touch screen systems. Plus, rooms can be booked without a rental fee from 5pm – 11pm Sunday – Thursday. Call ahead for reservations.

Yakitori Boy–Japas 211 N. 11th St. Philadelphia, PA 19107 215-923-8088

Your Choice: Dollar Dogs or The Grand Salami

Even though the Phills are in St. Louis taking on the Cardinals, dollar dogs are not out of the question. South Philly Bar & Grill has something going on almost every night of the week and tonight, Tuesday, June 21, is no exception.

Every Tuesday SPB&G is offering $1 grilled hotdogs (all-beef) and $1 Yuengling Lager and Lager Light drafts (10oz).

And if the dogs don’t fill you up, take on the South Philly Bar& Grill Grand Salami Food Challenge. Anyone who can take on the 6 pound sandwich made up of steak, salami, mushrooms, peppers, onions & three cheeses on a loaf of Italian bread in under 20 minutes will become part of local lore…and the sandwich will be free.

South Philly Bar & Grill 1235 E. Passyunk Ave. Philadelphia, PA 19147

Tonight’s Outdoor Music Event: A Free Jazz Concert

What better way to spend a beautiful June evening, than sitting outside listening to a free concert. Tonight, Brewerytown is hosting a free jazz concert tonight, Tuesday, June 21, at the newly restored Veterans Memorial Park at 31st & Girard at 7pm.

Tonight’s performer will be Philadelphian and tenor sax player Daniel Loeb and his trio.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Summer School is in Session

This summer, Franklin Mortgage & Investment will be teaching its patrons all about the classics...cocktails that is; every Monday - Friday, from 5 - 8pm, beginning tonight, June 20, and continuing through August.

Tackle Bullying with Todd Herremans

Even though the school year is over, the problem of bullying persists around the city. On Thursday, June 23, Philadelphia Eagles Offensive Lineman Todd Herremans will be hosting a “Don’t Mess With Todd” Anti-Bullying Fundraiser at Sugar House Casino from 7 – 10pm. Tickets are $30 each and include complimentary hors d’oeuvres and select complimentary cocktails.

The event will benefit No Place for Hate, a program developed by the Anti-Defamation League to provide a model for challenging bullying and bigotry in communities, schools and college campuses.

Restaurant Line-up for Tonight's Taste of the Nation

Every year, the city’s restaurant industry comes together for one cause or another, helping charitable organizations through donations of time, effort and of course food. One of the most notable events of the season is just a week away when Philly’s top restaurants will participate in Taste of the Nation tonight, Monday, June 20, at the Loews Hotel.

This year, the line up of popular Philadelphia restaurants will be complimented by a new mixology program developed by Phoebe Emson. Here's the full list of partricipating restaurants, each bringing a taste of what it does best.

10 Arts Bistro & Lounge by Eric Ripert, A Cupcake Wonderland, ABCD - The Espresso Authority, Bar Ferdinand, Blackfish, Capogiro, City Tavern, Cochon, Davio's Northern Italian Steakhouse, DiBruno Brothers, Fish, Fond, Funky Lil Kitchen, Han Dynasty, Khyber Pass Pub, Lacroix at the Rittenhouse, LoveBar Chocolate, Mad Batter Bakery, Marigold Kitchen, Max Brenner, McCrossen's Tavern, Meme, Modo Mio, Mugshots, Oyster House, Ristorante Panorama, River & Glen, Sole Food Restaurant, South Philadelphia Tap Room, Square 1682, Tashan, The Capital Grille, The Penn Jersey Metro Chefs Association Chapter of the American Culinary Federation, Trio Restaurant, V's Cupcakery, Valanni, Verdad Restaurant & Tequila Bar.

During the spring and summer months, Taste of the Nation will hold over 40 events in the United States and Canada, raising awareness and funds to end childhood hunger through a national initiative to end childhood hunger entirely by 2015.

Tickets to Taste of the Nation are still available for advance purchase.

General Admission: 6:30 – 9:30pm $85 in advance / $95 at the door.
VIP Admission: 5:30 – 9:30pm $135 in advance / $145 at the door.

100% of the ticket sales will go to benefit organizations working towards the cause, locally including Philabundance, The Food Trust, The Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger and The Pennsylvania Hunger Action Center.

For more information, visit the Taste of the Nation website.

Alfredo Brings Authentic Italian Fare to Berwyn on

Growing up as a first generation Italian American in Philadelphia has given me a certain entitlement when it comes to Italian food. And believe me, we Italian girls love our food – it’s not just a stereotype. It's one of those things you never turn down and learn to push on others the way our grandmothers so lovingly do. But being an Italian American is a double-edged sword. Sure you love pasta, but not everyone’s; and when others know about your heritage, they try to impress / comfort you with the flavors of your culture…or so they think.

Be it at a friend’s house or a local restaurant, the thought of eating someone else’s pasta topped with a jar of Prego makes me want to run, hide or even worse; not eat at all.

That being said, my standards are high. And so, I visit Alfredo.

The unclothed dark wood table was set simply with two inviting wine glasses, a white linen napkin and silverware. A young lady arrived to pour our waters followed by our server, Steven. He greeted us, opened our wine and left us to decide on our orders.

Within a moment, the young lady was back with a wooden bowl filled with slices of bread and a plate with a uniquely seasoned oil. Not only was there the standard olive oil and salt, but a hefty amount of a thick salt, crushed red pepper and balsamic all amix. My friend left the bread all to me, so I felt obligated to let none go to waste and got started immediately.

My friend and I began with the Caprese Salad; fresh mozzarella, tomato and basil for $9, and two house specialty appetizers**, the Calamari ai Ferri; charred calamari and cannellini beans for $10 and the Salsiccia & Broccoli Rabe; a home made sausage and rapini dish for $9.50.

She chose the cioppino for her entrée, a seafood stew if you will, comprised of clams, mussels, shrimp, calamari and fish in a light tomato broth for $19.50.

I debated between the Vitello Riviera, a veal medallion with shrimp and crab meat in a white wine sauce. But I ultimately opted for the Paccheri alla Napoletana, a wide rigatoni with a braised short rib ragu for $16.

We sipped our wine and chatted about life. Our first course arrived just in time for me to go through another piece of bread with that delicious oil.

I immediately dug into the nearest dish, the caprese salad. Sitting there in all of its glory the firm red tomatoes, milky white mozzarella and fresh green basil did its native Italy’s colors proud. The balsamic was sparse, squirted atop the salad and perfectly proportioned.

Next, I made my way cautiously to the calamari. When it’s not battered and deep fried, decent calamari is usually hard to come by. I took my first bite tentatively, only to realize the tubes were nearly perfect – tender, yet firm but not rubbery and coated in what felt like a thick olive oil. The accompanying cannellini bean salad was cold, a very well played contrast I felt, but my dining companion was a bit perturbed by the contrast. The beans were perfectly cooked, mixed with tomato, red onion and parsley. It was the perfect complement to the flavor and texture of the calamari and overall a great seasonal dish.

My only complaint was the leaf of lettuce used to house the beans. The level of food that I was enjoying deserved a better vessel than a sad little piece of lettuce. This may be one of the best calamari dished I’ve ever enjoyed and a little work on the plating would give the flavors their due justice.

The next of the house specialties was the Salsicca & Broccoli rabe; well plated and aesthetically beautiful. The homemade sausage was split and perfectly cooked, the texture of the meat was clean, no gristle or chunks of seasoning that needed to be better mixed. Very well done. The broccoli rabe, while looking fabulous, and apparently seasoned with roasted garlic, was not bitter at all, but not especially flavorful. Regardless, we cleaned our plates and were very happy with our appetizers.

Our plates were cleared and our entrees arrived. Set down in front of me was a beautifully plated dish of rigatoni topped with meaty short rib. The gravy looked like it in fact was acceptable, to the naked eye. It was finished with parsley and topped tableside with grated cheese. It begged for me to dig in and I did so, happily.

My friend’s Cioppino, arrived – an overflowing menagerie of seafood. Other than needing its rim wiped, the plate looked delicious. She also had it topped with grated cheese, but when it came to the pepper request, we were presented with the black pepper grinder. I opted out, expecting the crushed red that was customarily given with Italian fare.

As we dug in, my friend realized she was in fact in need of the elusive red pepper. We flagged down our friendly server who immediately brought the flakes that we were looking for to the table.

A taste or two of my friends Cioppino made me wish I hadn’t polished off that bread so hastily. But after the four or so slices I had eaten, I really didn’t need any more. Our server then appeared, offering us more bread. We opted out.

My focus switched back to my rigatoni, which was cooling in front of me. A couple of steamy, saucy bites will slow any girl down pretty quickly. The pasta was perfectly cooked and the gravy itself was very nicely done. A good meat gravy should have an oil factor that would ruin a nice shirt. Not grease, but oil – something that comes out of the meat. It lets you know that it’s been well cooked and not just opened and heated up. The resulting product has a lower acidity level and a rich, layered flavor. This dish met all the criteria.

I wrapped what I couldn’t finish and tried to quickly ask for the check, but my breadl-ess dining partner got the question out too quickly.

“What do you have for dessert,” she asked.

The options sounded great, but the first of the list, the Tiramisu, caught my ear entirely too quickly to turn down. Plus, all of the desserts at Alfredo are house made. My dining partner, a self proclaimed tiramisu aficionado, was equally excited. I skipped the coffee. She had a decaf, to which I laughed. Barely 30 and already drinking decaf…what is this world coming to?

Our picture perfect dessert arrived in a little glass jar with a half-chocolate coated ladyfinger plated next to it and beautifully done.

There could have been more coffee flavor or another layer of ladyfingers. And it was a bit custardy. But ultimately, it was creamy and delicious. As for the plated ladyfinger, it was more of a garnish than anything. Possibly with a cup of coffee, it would have been good to dip, but having a bite of the crispy cookie dipped in semisweet chocolate made me regret that I had. Luckily I had the rest of my tiramisu custard to polish off, leaving me on a happy note.

The entire article was written for & can be read on

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Philly Soul’s Got Tickets by the Carload

According to an article in the Philly Business Journal, The Philadelphia Soul, Philly's arena football league, will be offering a special “charge by the carload” night.

This Friday, June 17, when the Philadelphia Soul hosts the Tulsa Talons, fans will be able to enter for $50 a carload. Anywhere from 4 – 15 peole will be accepted in the carload lanes.

Tomorrow morning, look for Chickie and Pete’s Taxi Crab all around the city. Everyone who packs in will receive a free ticket to the game. Look for the Taxi Crab at Rittenhosue Square at 8am, Love Park at 8:45am, Independence Mall at 9:30am and the Art Museum at 10:15am.

The Institute is Turning 3!

In honor of its loyal customers that have made the past three years possible, The Institute is throwing itself a birthday bash this Saturday from 10am – 9pm. Grill and chill while The Institute dishes out burgers and dogs, on them.

Plus, they’ll be rolling out an outdoor sprinkler room, just for the occasion. That’s right. Like any 3 year olds birthday party worth a salt, there will be a sprinkler to run through.

Bring Your Own Towel.

By the way, The Institute is also looking for local artists, crafters and vendors for its Sunday Brunch Flea Market. No charge to participate.

The Institute Bar 549 N. 12th St. (12th & Green) Philadelphia, PA 19123 267-318-7772

Rum Bar's Gone Berry

Celebrate the beginning of summer, the latest full moon and the strawberry harvest at Rum Bar when they host Strawberry Nights, this Saturday, June 18, at 9pm.

Owner Adam Kanter has been hard at work picking berries in the fields for this event…no not really.

But Rum Bar is ready to party with strawberry infused spirits, from cocktails to beer including Strawberry Mojitos ($7), Strawberry Daiquiris ($6), Strawberry & Cream Shots ($5), Strawberry Infused Rum Shots ($4) and Strawberry Blonde Beers ($3).

Rum Bar 20th & Walnut Philadelphia, PA

Finding Flea Markets: Society Hill

This Saturday, the brigade of vendors moves its wares to Society Hill for this week’s flea market. The Antique & Vintage Flea Market will take over 3rd and Pine from 9am – 5pm, as always, early birds are welcome.

There will be over 75 different vendors with antiques, collectables, vintage furniture, jewelry, pottery, home furnishings and I’m sure some junk and treasures mixed in as well.

Plus, they are offering free parking in a lot at 3rd & Lombard.

Flea markets in Philly always bring the crowds and with the constant detours that come along with any event here in the city, its probably best to park far away and hoof it a few blocks!
For the full schedule visit the of Phila Flea Markets website.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wednesday = Center City District Sips

It’s Wednesday, and that means cheap drinks at some of the city’s most pricy establishments. Center City District Sips, the weekly Wednesday night Happy Hour Series continues tonight with $4 cocktails, $3 wines, $2 beers and half price apps from 5pm – 7pm.

And don’t forget about the CCD Sips app that’s available to download. Some say it makes it harder to choose. My opinion? Download it and decide for yourself. It’s always good to know your options. Sometimes you’ll forget about a place that was on your mind and the app might just jog your memory. It’s available here for iPhone and Android.

If you find a great place that has awesome drinks or really good specials, feel free to comment below and share the wealth!

Click here for a full list of participating bars. For more information visit

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Opa Welcomes El Malito for This Week’s Party

Opa’s weekly party series continues this Thursday, June 16, at 10pm with the second installment of Glendi, when Midtown Village’s modern Greek go-to, Opa welcomes DJ Rashaan and El Malito.

Each Thursday throughout the summer, Opa will host different parties featuring fashion, art, music and photography exhibitions. This week’s party isn’t going to block off the street, but it will give you a second chance to check out El Malito’s newest release Platypus, "a genre-busting, bi-lingual, global hodgepodge of deliciousness that is only the beginning."

El Malito will also be playing at Penn Treaty Park the night before for Waterfront Wednesday.

The party goes from 10pm – 2am and after last week’s turnout, I’m sure there’s a bunch of people craving cucumber vodka drinks…so get to Glendi and get your fill for this Thursday night’s party.

Opa 1311 Sansom Street Philadelphia, PA
Past Coverage on GLENDI.

Will Philly’s Shake Shack Have a VIP Grill?

With the newly confirmed information that NYC’s Shake Shack will be opening up here in Philadelphia, the city’s foodies and bloggers are all a-buzz. Some seem to be over the burger binge. Others seem to be more excited.

I am included in the latter. During an overnight to New York in May, I got the chance to try out a little Shake Shack myself. I am sold. The burgers are totally delicious and I can’t wait for the Philly location to open at 20th and Sansom next year.

But there’s more to the story than whether or not a foie covered burger tops whatever the secret sauce is on the Shack’s. There are doggie treats on the menu named the Puchini; a total win. And even more impressive / amusing, the alleged VIP grill saved just for New York’s most elite customers.

As New Yorkers go, and pretty much anywhere else, getting a VIP in is a must. And at the newly opened Shake Shack at 1 WTC, mediaistro's fishbowlny blog reported that there’s a special grill set aside for the Goldman Sachs employees, so that the long lines and waits may be avoided.

If in fact this is true, which it seems to be, my question is:

Will Philly get a VIP Grill?

It’ll be better than pre-ordering 5 Guys and beating the line for pickup! I can’t wait to find out who makes the VIP cut.

U-City Launches Sustainability Saturdays

Locavores unite this Saturday, June 18, in West Philadelphia for the first in a series of four U- City Sustainability Saturday events. Every third Saturday, from now until September, Sustainability Saturdays will offer tours, urban farming activities, how-to workshops, beer and food events, and more. Most events are free, but a few are ticketed, so be sure to double check.

This Saturday will kick off the series with an entire day of “Grow it Yourself” activities. With the Clark Park Farmers Market, a self guided West Philly garden tour, a foraging for edible plants tour, an irrigating with storm water lesson, a farm to table trolley tour featuring Mid Atlantic Restaurant, an ice cream tour and tasting at Bartram Garden, a sustainable landscaping lesson, and a workshop on creating an urban homestead.

During the series, there will also be events like a West Philadelphia home brewing competition and workshop, a bee keeping and honey tasting, make your own worm composting bin workshop, Stoudts Brewery sustainable pig roast at City Taphouse, and a mead and soda fermentation workshop.

For complete details and the full summer lineup, visit University City’s website.

Summer Solstice Sunday at the Kimmel Center

Welcome the excitement of summer during the Kimmel Center’s Summer Solstice Celebration this Sunday June 19. Ancient civilizations worshiped the sun and appreciated its spiritual importance. Those traditions continue, thriving on beaches across the country. In modern-day Philadelphia that history will be remembered during a 15-hour family friendly mega-event celebrating music, art and life during the longest day of the year.

The Summer Solstice Celebration begins at 11am with a drum circle (don’t forget to bring your own drum). The all-ages entertainment includes face painting, live animals, music and dancing. There will be vendors selling food, drinks and wares throughout the event. When the sun sets for the day, the night is just heating up with a Bob & Barbara Drag Show, First Person Arts Story Slam, a fashion show by Sa Va boutique, tarot readings and a dance party until 2am under the lights of PIFA’s Eiffel Tower that will remain on display until the end of the year. Tickets are available for $10, for adults, $5, children under 5.

For more information, visit the Kimmel Center website.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Mixers for Sale at Midtown Village's Grocery

Chef Marcy Turney and Valarie Safran are now offering Mixers, sold in the freezer section of their prepared foods shop Grocery. Having started in the BYO business with Lolita and Bindi, the ladies would provide tasty mixers for those who wanted to bring their own and have a little something special to pair with the flavors of the food.

Made of fresh fruit juices and sold by the quart (5 servings) for $12, the Mixers can be blended with any liquor, but probably work best with vodka, rum or tequila. Right now, they are available in Traditional Lemon-Lime, Black Cherry, Mango Cardamom, Blood Orange and Pomegranite-Ginger.

As the season progresses and other fruits are available new varieties, like Watermelon, will be added. Directions are included with each bottle and if there’s anyway that the blood orange mix can help me to replicate the Sanguinello (pictured) from Barbuzzo, than I’m sold!

Grocery 101 S. 13th St. Philadelphia, PA 19107

Philly Nerd Nite is Looking for a New Home

The recent closure of Mar Bar in University City has left its monthly Nerd Nite gathering scouting for a new home. While Nerd Nite takes its hiatus over the summer, it will be spending its time finding the perfect new location for the fall.

For those not familiar with Nerd Nite, it's a monthly lecture and entertainment series covering topics as unusual as they are interesting. Nerd Nite began holding its monthly events at Field House, but the battle between sports downstairs and interesting convo upstairs became too much to bear. Its second, more fitting home, Mar Bar is now shuttered, leaving the nerds homeless.

Now that they have some time to search, Nerd Nite organizers have a few specifications they would like to have met, in their new fall home.

1. A space for a group of 100 or so.
2. Alcoholic beverages for sale.
3. Proximity to public transportation.
4. A/V equipment (projector and microphones).

If you know of / own / run the perfect new space, send suggestions to

Nerd Nite Philly is also looking for a new co-boss. For more info on that, or to suggest speakers or presenters check out the Nerd Nite Philly website.

Waterfront Wednesdays at Penn Treaty Park

Though its first event was rained out, the Waterfront Wednesday Series at Penn Treaty Park continued on last week with its first event of the season. This Wednesday, June 15, the concert series continues with a Philebrity Ho Down at 6:30pm.

The concert is free and according to philebrity’s website, they’re “pretty stoked” about the acts including Blayer Pointdujour & Rockers Galore, who have a “dub/punk/live-band-mashup thing happening” and El Malito “the world’s only Puerto Rican grime rapper.”

Not too sure what’s so ho-downy about it, but hey – it sounds interesting.

Tickets Available for Next Monday's Taste of the Nation

Every year, the city’s restaurant industry comes together for one cause or another, helping charitable organizations through donations of time, effort and of course food. One of the most notable events of the season is just a week away when Philly’s top restaurants will participate in Taste of the Nation on Monday, June 20, at the Loews Hotel.

This year, the line up of popular Philadelphia restaurants will be complimented by a new mixology program developed by Phoebe Emson. A full list of participating restaurants is below.

During the spring and summer months, Taste of the Nation will hold over 40 events in the United States and Canada, raising awareness and funds to end childhood hunger through a national initiative to end childhood hunger entirely by 2015.

Tickets to Taste of the Nation are still available for advance purchase.

General Admission: 6:30 – 9:30pm $85 in advance / $95 at the door.
VIP Admission: 5:30 – 9:30pm $135 in advance / $145 at the door.

100% of the ticket sales will go to benefit organizations working towards the cause, locally including Philabundance, The Food Trust, The Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger and The Pennsylvania Hunger Action Center.

For more information, visit the Taste of the Nation website.

Participating Restaurants: 10 Arts Bistro & Lounge by Eric Ripert, A Cupcake Wonderland, ABCD - The Espresso Authority, Bar Ferdinand, Blackfish, Capogiro, City Tavern, Cochon, Davio's Northern Italian Steakhouse, DiBruno Brothers, Fish, Fond, Funky Lil Kitchen, Han Dynasty, Khyber Pass Pub, Lacroix at the Rittenhouse, LoveBar Chocolate, Mad Batter Bakery, Marigold Kitchen, Max Brenner, McCrossen's Tavern, Meme, Modo Mio, Mugshots, Oyster House, Ristorante Panorama, River & Glen, Sole Food Restaurant, South Philadelphia Tap Room, Square 1682, Tashan, The Capital Grille, The Penn Jersey Metro Chefs Association Chapter of the American Culinary Federation, Trio Restaurant, V's Cupcakery, Valanni, Verdad Restaurant & Tequila Bar.

Friday, June 10, 2011

2nd Saturday on the Avenue & Beer Week Throwdown

Each month East Passyunk Avenue celebrates Second Saturday with specials, deals, discounts, and music. This Saturday, June 11, stroll the avenue and check out the art, restaurants and shops that keep the neighborhood alive.

On the Beer Week scene, the ladies of The Bottle Show (1837 EPA) have an East Coast vs. West Coast throw-down planned with two separate sessions. $5 for one (1:30-4pm) or $8 for both (6:30 – 9pm). In the first round, Fegley’s BrewWorks and Magic Hat will go up against Breckenridge and Oskar Blues. And for the main event, Allagash and Pretty Things will battle it out with 21st Amendment and Elysian.

Check out a few more of the participating businesses below.

Green Aisle Grocery (1618 EPA) - Cold brew by start up ReAnimator, a small batch, local coffee roaster. "Like" our Fan page and be entered to win a $20 GC to the store! Drawing is June 13.

Sweet Jane Vintage (1820 EPA) - Opening reception for 'Olvidado |Uitat', a photography exhibit. Refreshments will be served. For previews of the work please visit: and

Mockingbird Salong (1822 S. 13th Street) - Framed water color painting and prints by Leah Sabatelli on display and for sale.

Fuel (1917 EPA) - $2 Cappuccinos and Lattes All Day. Free Coffee with brunch from 11-4, 3 Courses for $10 from 6-10pm (Soup, Salad, Panini).

Fringe Salon (1728 EPA) - Recent paintings by Robert Bender, Beach themed jewelry design by: Typhaney Shanker (, Gretchen Diehl: Bird Queen Designs (, Music: DJ Jesse Buehler with a secret live performance, wine and snacks.

With Love Finale: Yards & Stoudts Bring “Brotherly Suds 2”

Tonight, Friday, June 10, is the final installation of the With Love Beer Garden and tonight’s breweries are bringing a special collabo brew just for the occasion. From 4pm – 8pm, head to the With Love Beer Garden on the patio at The Four Seasons Hotel at 18th & the Parkway for a night with Yards Brewing Company’s Tom Kehoe and Stoudts Brewing Company’s Carol Stoudt.

This local double dose is packing the good stuff and bringing along its “Brotherly Suds 2” the second annual local Philly Beer Week collaborative brew. This year, the local brew masters cooked up their creativity at Stoudts brewing, using German specialty malts, German and domestic hops and Shmidt’s yeast strain for fermentation.

Guests who check in on facebook or foursquare get a commemorative “With Love” beer cozy. .

uwishunu About Philly's Original Settlers

You can find out all about the Sewdes and their B-eautiful Princess's help on the gallery opening here and on

The American Swedish Historical Museum’s New Gallery Is Now Open, Devoted To The History Of Philadelphia’s Earliest Settlers

With the help of Sweden’s Princess Madeleine, The American Swedish Historical Museum recently debuted a new gallery exhibit dedicated to the New Sweden Colony and its earliest European inhabitants.

Before William Penn made his mark on Philadelphia, Swedish settlers put down the city’s original roots in a colony known then as New Sweden. The Sven Gunnarsson and Jonas Nilsson New Sweden Gallery, the latest permanent addition to the museum, explores Sweden’s initial interactions with Lenape and Susquehannock Indians, the colony’s 1655 fall to the Dutch, the impact of William Penn and the Quakers on Swedish and Native American land and the role of New Sweden colonists in the future of Philadelphia.

The new gallery features several interactive components, including an animated, computer-based map detailing the location of New Sweden that visitors can use in the gallery, and “New Sweden in Profile”, a hands-on activity offering a look into the lives of individual settlers.

The 80-year-old museum’s 12 galleries, situated in a 17th-century Swedish manor, showcase more than 400 years of Swedish–American contributions to history, art, architecture, music, science, technology and Philadelphia tradition.


Thursday, June 9, 2011

Finding Flea Markets: 10th & South

During the spring months here in Philadelphia, you don’t have to look too far or too hard to find a flea market. This Saturday is no exception with an antiques and vintage flea market at 10th & South Streets from 9am – 5pm (early birds welcome).

There will be more than 75 vendors selling antiques, collectibles, vintage furniture, jewelry, pottery, glassware, home furnishings and much more. The rain date is set for Sunday, June 12 and my trusty Weather Channel App says 50% chance of rain...both days...and you know how it's 100% reliable 50% of the time!

Saturday’s Spring Beer Extravaganza = Deal of the Day!

Also on the PhillyBars215 Newsletter...the Spring Beer Extravaganza.

Where can $10 score you 14 drinks? At NoChe’s Spring Beer Extravaganza, this Saturday, June 11, from 8pm – 10pm.

NoChe is getting into the Beer Week spirit with kegs from around the country and the area. Saturday’s event will feature brews like Stone, Bell’s, Lagunitas, Yards, Sly Fox and Flying Fish.
The $10 admission fee gains guests tastes of 14 different brews…probably the best deal of the day.
NoChe 18th & Chestnut Sts. Philadelphia, PA

Tonight in Old City: Mob Movie Quizzo at Drinkers Tavern

Drinker’s Cult Quizzo series continues – but this time, its happening in Old City! Tonight, Thursday, June 9 at 8pm, head down to Drinkers Tavern between Front & 2nd on Market, at 8pm for Mob Movie Quizzo.

As usual, there will be drink specials and the infamous Taco of The Month.

Check out June's entire Quizzo Lineup below.