July 29, 2011 |
IN the food deserts of Philadelphia's low-income minority neighborhoods, where supermarkets are few and far between, the typical corner store that residents rely on for groceries has been a fat fortress, a high-carb castle, a heart-unhealthy haven for high-fructose corn-syrup drinks masquerading as "10 percent real fruit juice. " But today, if you walk into any one of 580 Philadelphia corner groceries, the first thing that hits you is that this is not your mom and pop's mom-and-pop store.
June 9, 2011 |
BY NIGHT, he serves dinner for $135 per person. By day, he serves . . . chicken tenders? Philadelphia chef-restaurateur Marc Vetri is haute, yet dudelike: He's into fast bikes and light-as-air spinach gnocchi with brown butter. His business partners are guy-gourmets, too. Manager Jeff Benjamin likes country singer Kenny Chesney and fine Italian wine. Chef Jeff Michaud goes for boxing gyms and melt-in-your-mouth pasta. Still, no matter how rugged their pastimes, team Vetri has built a big-time business pleasing the hoity-toity set via superchic Italian grub.
June 3, 2011 |
One in an occasional series on the demand for locally grown food and its impact on our region. What started as an effort to bring a farmers market to Strawberry Mansion instead became a socially conscious food-distribution business bringing freshly picked, locally grown produce to schools, hospitals, and workplaces. And now Common Market, launched in 2008, has received the largest grant of its young life - $1.1 million from the Kellogg Foundation. The not-for-profit, which started with five customers, among them Cooper University Hospital, now has 60-plus customers and works with more than 100 farmers, earning a reputation for treating growers fairly and paying them promptly.
June 2, 2011
_ Say it fast three times: Center City Sips. Center City Sips. Center City Sips. Did you get it right? Reward yourself with a $4 cocktail, $2 beer or $3 glass of wine every Wednesday through Aug. 31 at participating bars and restaurants. Half-price appetizers, too, and some places offer a 15 percent dinner discount after 7 p.m. Find out more at www.centercityphila.org/life/Sips.phpa . Twitter follow @CCDSips. _ Speaking of drinks, how about the Raise a Drink for Tomorrow fundraiser from 5:30-8 p.m. Saturday at the Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center (640 Water Works Drive)
May 26, 2011 |
It seems counterintuitive, like bringing in a righthander to pitch to Ryan Howard in the bottom of the ninth with the bases loaded: Reflagging half a busy concession stand in the concourse at Citizens Bank Park to sell turkey burgers, salads, grilled chicken wraps, hummus and pita chips, carrots and celery, and sugar-free Tastykakes. But it's here, behind third base, beneath a new green sign heralding "Philly Fresh. " Hot dogs and other stadium staples are sold in the other half of the South Philadelphia Market stand - the side, it must be noted, with the longer lines.
December 30, 2010 |
Willing to put his mouth where the money is, singer-songwriter Tim Gleeson will perform selections from his solo CD, No Sad Songs , at your place. "They're called house concerts . . . there's lots of stuff about them on Google," Gleeson says in his Moorestown home studio, a pleasant, orderly space full of guitars and recording equipment. "I've done a couple so far. " Such is the low-fi yet high-tech life of a working American roots musician, even an established local performer whose work appears on other artists' recordings - including a disc recently nominated for a Grammy.
October 28, 2010
PHILADELPHIA NATIVE Ann Karlen, a ceramics artist and the visionary behind the cooperative art gallery Vox Populi, has always been a bit of an outlier. Her newest passion is all about the cultivation of locally farmed and sustainable food through the nonprofit Fair Food, of which she is the founding director. She said it all started with a very selfish desire. "I wanted healthy food for me," Karlen shared. "I started going to [local] organic shops . . . but I also noticed that all the farmers were from California.
October 12, 2010 |
The cheers started, then swelled, as Casey Caruso, wearing a broad-brim hat festooned with small, dangling fruit replicas, grabbed a mike in the cafeteria at Great Valley Middle School. "The veggie ladies are back," she told her lunchtime audience of 360 sixth graders. As Caruso and her partner, Trudy Skibbe, walked between tables, eager hands reached out to grab the treats they were serving: slices of butternut-squash pizza, cooked with onions, rosemary and olive oil, and topped with mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
February 19, 2010 |
The schoolyard at Fairhill Elementary School was abuzz. Today, a very important person with a fancy car, a lot of bodyguards, and the ear of the president will descend on the North Philadelphia school, and the students were ready. Angelica Negron, 10, was "happy and excited" about Michelle Obama's visit to talk about healthy food. Angelica said she hoped she'd be picked to meet with the first lady. "I think she's going to talk about vegetables, because a lot of kids, they eat a lot of junk food," Angelica, a fifth grader who wore a ball cap fashionably askew, said yesterday.
February 17, 2010
FIRST LADY Michelle Obama's visit to Philadelphia on Friday will focus on a critical component of her campaign against obesity - access to healthy food. And that has more to do with income than it should: millions of low-income and minority families live in what have been tagged "food deserts," areas that lack supermarkets or other places to buy fresh, healthy food. Which is why Mrs. Obama is headed our way. She will visit supermarkets here to highlight the success of the Pennsylvania Fresh Food Financing Initiative - which is the model for President Obama's plan to spend $400 million to leverage private money for grants to build or renovate supermarkets in underserved locations.