July 1, 2010
Here is an excerpt from the online chat of Inquirer restaurant critic Craig LaBan: Reader: I'm a St. Joseph's student. Quick question - City Avenue seems to be an upcoming area. What places could you suggest to eat other than the KFC's, Wendys, 7-11's, and McDonalds that surround the campus? Craig LaBan: Either this is wishful thinking on your end, or I've missed something new and exciting, but City Avenue isn't ringing many bells on my dining radar lately. Of all the places, I would be very curious to pay a visit to the new Franco's Osteria, which moved from East Falls into the Presidential City building.
August 26, 2010
Reader: Who in Philly comes to mind when looking for someone "pushing the envelope" in terms of molecular gastronomy? C.L.: Matt Levin, the former Lacroix chef who recently opened Adsum, would be one of my first stops. Lacroix at the Rittenhouse is another spot that still loves playing around with liquid nitro and various futuristic powders. The Garces restaurants have been dabbling with high-tech ingredients and techniques. Probably, the one place in town though that still seems extremely devoted to pushing this envelope is Marigold Kitchen in W. Philly, where current owner Robert Halpern is exploring that world with ambition, creativity and good ingredients.
June 3, 2002 |
OK, so the name Lincoln Financial Field may sound nice to Jon A. Boscia, the CEO of Lincoln Financial Group. It probably even sounds nice to the Eagles - $139.6 million nice. And maybe today's formal announcement of the name of the Eagles' new stadium will draw raves from the corporate world. But how many football fans will tell their friends and coworkers Monday morning that they spent the previous afternoon watching their Iggles at Lincoln Financial Field? As one Inquirer reader put it, it all sounds so "adult.
January 10, 2013
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat of Tuesday, Jan. 8: Craig LaBan: It's been a few weeks since we last spoke and I hope you all had great family celebrations and wonderful meals. I'd love to hear some of your highlight experiences. One of mine was a visit to the Italian Market, where I feasted on fresh tortillas from the Tortilleria San Roman (my vote for best addition to the Market), and also learned of a potential end of a sausage era, as Sonny D'Angelo announced that his family was considering selling the century-old butcher shop.
June 27, 2013
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat of June 25, 2013: Craig LaBan: Good afternoon! I've been down the Shore the last two weeks checking out what's new (not as much as usual this year) and circling back to old favorites to see what's left post-Sandy (more than expected). I'll have plenty to tell you on that subject the next two weekends, beginning Sunday. One tasty tidbit from my Shore visit: these vivid purple macarons filled with creamy chocolate ganache from the Painted Pie in Stone Harbor . . . the perfect midday sweet.
April 18, 2013
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat of April 16, 2013: Craig LaBan: Saturday night I was drafted by my daughter to be pizza chef for her birthday sleepover party. So, a field trip to South Philly (Faragalli's for dough, Claudio's and Di Bruno's for cheese, pesto, and meats) then I FIRED UP THE BIG GREEN EGG! Yeah, I'm a little enthusiastic. Here's my fave, an admittedly free-form round topped with prosciutto, mozz, and some organic tomato puree that went from tart and bright (when raw)
March 11, 2010
Here's an excerpt from Craig LaBan's weekly online chat: Reader: I visited Noble Friday night. The food was very good: the gnocchi appetizer and the free range chicken (honestly the best chicken I ever had.) But I was a little taken aback by the sparsity of the menu - only seven entrees. When is limiting the menu choices to focus on quality taken a bit too far? Craig LaBan: I'm glad to hear a good word on Noble, which changed chefs (with a veteran from Supper) just after the new year.
July 14, 2011
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat: C.L.: Anyone visit the Vendy awards in the Piazza Sunday? We've got video of the event, shot by one of our intrepid interns, Greg Thomas (Philly.com/vendys). I was tickled to see that one of our veteran food trucks, Gigi's, was the Vendy Cup winner, not one of the nouveau fusion additions. It would have been so easy for Guapos Tacos to take that prize, but ... I just had a FAN-TASTIC Caribbean lunch from Gigi's.
February 14, 2013 |
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat: Craig LaBan: Happy Mardi Gras!! I always get that gumbo feeling this time of year. Where do you plan to get into your Mardi Gras mood? Reader: I vote Khyber Pass all the way! Reader: I was at Khyber last week and they had a Walker's style cochon de lait po' boy on special. It was like being in NOLA from the first bite. Reader: What do YOU recommend? C.L.: Well, I like some of the other contenders pretty much - Rex was a nice surprise for South Street, and Cajun Kate's is such a fun hidden gem to come across in the Booth's Corner Farmer's Market . . . but no one in town right now is nailing the true NOLA flavors quite like Khyber Pass.
February 11, 2010
Reader: We have had a lot of mediocre BBQ from some of the new restaurants lately. Bebe's is a little spicy for my crew. Do you or your chatters have any favorite BBQ place? Craig LaBan: If you think Bebe's (and some of the other new places, like Percy St.) are mediocre, then you didn't have to eat barbecue in Philly before. We are definitely taking a step forward this year in our roster of go-to barbecue pits. Of course, this is one of the most personal and varied cuisines out there - Bebe's signature is its rub, so maybe that one isn't for you. But mediocre?