Archive for 'West Philly'

Chili Szechuan, Szechuan West of the River

While I tend to do most of my Chinese eating east of Broad, Chili Szechuan has earned a reputation for legit Chinese food in West Philly. With jellyfish, kidney, and duck lips on the menu,  Chili Szechuan is not catering to basics. I ordered take out from the 42nd and Chestnut Street location.

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Lady Macbeth Hands from U-Town’s Spicy Noodles

Pardon my smudged makeup, I have shed many tears this week caused by walking in the piercingly cold windy weather we’ve been having.  Besides going easy on the eyeliner and wrapping a scarf around my face, the other necessity right now is spicy, hot soup, preferable of the Asian variety. While at a meeting in University City, U-Town seemed like it would hook me up with this last need. U-Town’s sign says it serves Korean and Japanese cuisine, but its really a Korean spot. Similar to Koreana, the menu is more of a quick hot soup, stew, grilled meats place. You aren’t going to have an epic table-side Korean BBQ meal here. The menu hovers in the $10 range; my noodle soup ended up being $10.99.

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Top Lunches of 2014

A pre New Year round up of my favorites bites is a fun excuse to look back on each year of dining. It is also incentive to get down and hold the plank position until the ball drops.  Here are my 2014 eating highlights:

During my first overseas trip of the  year, I ate my way through Beijing, Xi’an, and Shanghai!

Soon after, I started giving Chinatown Food Tours! (if you still owe someone a belated Holiday gift, its not a bad idea!)

I wrote a few fun articles for Zagat, including one on shopping at “ethnic” markets.

On an outing to Graffiti Pier in Port Richmond, I put together a Polish picnic that you can replicate.

For my birthday, we celebrated with beer and a Puerto Rican Pork feast.

I coordinated a food truck festival for 15,000 people in Mt. Airy.

On a solo vacation in Mexico City, I ate a ton of street meat.

I was really proud of my Federal Donuts costume this Halloween.

Way more, after the jump…

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Spicy Lassis and Fruity Chaat from Mood Cafe

As the #2 most popular restaurant in the city of Philadelphia, Mood Cafe has a perfect score. What could possibly have an entire city so enthralled-crunchy bits, covered in a mix of colorful sauces, with vegetarian and meat options.  Mood Cafe serves chaat and lassis to the lucky people of West Philly and visitors. I didn’t realize until after I was finished eating here that the same intense guy also owns Desi Chaat House, which I enjoyed a few years ago. Both are located along Baltimore Avenue (in the 40′s) along with Desi Village that I have yet to visit, which makes me jealous that my neighborhood doesn’t have even ONE quick chaat take out shop for me.

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Improve Your Mann Center Visit with Jamaican Chicken Platters

I have been picnicking pretty hard this summer; casually eating outside is one of life’s simple pleasures. Making my way over to a Mann Center performance, I wanted to pick something up nearby to make a little picnic to go along with the classical music and BYO summer friendly white wine we brought. The area by the Mann Center is rich with tiny, Caribbean and Jamaican spots.  I picked two of them, right across the street from each other, just north of the 52nd Street subway stop.  Both had similar set ups, a counter to order large platters from and a few tables to sit at.

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Pick Up the Chicken Wings, Mac & Cheese, and Chocolate Handpies at West Philly’s Wishbone

I enjoy chicken, but I really love fried chicken.  When the quick stop fried chicken spot opened last fall in University City, I had every intention of scooting over there. I took me a little while, but I finally got there. Fried chicken, served as boneless white or dark meat or as wings is ready under a heat lamp for $8.95 a pound. Chicken sandwiches, sides, desserts, and  funky sodas make up the rest of the menu.

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West African Feast Platters at African Small Pot

Bored of food from the European and American continents? Travel west on Woodland Ave, really really west. It doesn’t take as long as you think. When you get to the 60s you will start to see a few African restaurants. You can do as we did, picking African Small Pot, a small restaurant specializing in West African food.

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