The Best Meal Marc Vetri Ever Had

Plus, the 46-year-old super chef dishes on his lackluster Drexel GPA, a serious Celebrity Apprentice addiction, and why he can’t stand garlic.

Illustration of Chef Marc Vetri of Philadelphia by artist Andy Friedman.

My name is … Marc Vetri. Make sure you put it with a “c.”

I am a … chef and a father. Wait. Put “father” first, so my wife doesn’t get mad at me.




The most famous person I’ve cooked for … is hard to say. When I worked in Malibu in the early ’90s, everyone from Neil Young to Jack Nicholson. But at Vetri, Robert De Niro.

To stay in shape … I do a ton of yoga, I practice Brazilian jujitsu, and I ride my bike.

My secret talent … is playing the guitar.

I will shave my beard … when it’s 98 degrees with 98 percent humidity. It may be off before this article comes out.

One song I always turn up … is Led Zeppelin’s “The Lemon Song.”

Philadelphia really needs … more innovators, more forward-thinking people, and more young people not only going to college here but actually staying, because it’s such an awesome place to live.

My most prized material possession … would have to be one of my guitars. I have about 15. The highlight, though, is my Martin pre-war 1932 double-O 21. It’s awesome.

I met my wife … in yoga class in the summer of 2004. We practiced next to one another for more than a year without saying one word to each other, and then one day, we just started talking. And that was it.

If I’m going to have one drink … it will be an espresso.

I am allergic to … negativity.

People will be surprised to know … I can’t stand garlic. I’ve just always hated it, and then when I went to Italy, they didn’t even use it a lot. I always thought that Italian food was all about the garlic. My mom used to eat raw cloves, and it smelled so bad, I think that stuck in my head.

At Drexel, my GPA … was 2.7, and I’m being generous.

If you really want to piss me off … lie to me. I hate liars.

One TV show I cannot miss is … Celebrity Apprentice. It’s a fucking train wreck, dude. I love it.

My kids think that I … am the coolest thing since sliced bread. They’re six, four and three. They just don’t know any better yet.

The most memorable meal I ever ate … was at Alain Ducasse’s Louis XV in Monte Carlo. A friend made a reservation for me. The only table they had was in the kitchen. I ate there alone, and after the meal, they told me, “Your meal is compliments of Mr. Ducasse.” Which was weird, since I’ve never even met him.

The first car I owned … was a hand-me-down tan Toyota station wagon that was nicknamed the Wonder Wagon.

I lost my virginity … very late.

I learned to cook … from my grandparents. Well, I learned to love cooking from them, but I really learned to cook in Italy, when I was 25.

My wife is always telling me … how lucky I am.

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  • Andy

    Field position almost killed the Birds on Sunday night.

  • Andy

    Field position almost killed the Birds on Sunday night.

  • MrSmith

    Fletch is 6’5″.
    With the Afro, 6’9″.

    • gt22777

      Don’t tell me my business boy…It’s all ball bearings nowadays…..Classic!! love that movie…

  • MrSmith

    Fletch is 6’5″.
    With the Afro, 6’9″.

    • gt22777

      Don’t tell me my business boy…It’s all ball bearings nowadays…..Classic!! love that movie…

  • whiskeybill

    I Howie is making Rolle the scapegoat for the disappointing special teams play when the bigger problem is Bobby April. I remember when the Eagles brought April in the fans were excited because we were supposed to be getting one of if not the best special teams coach in the game but we have not gotten anything from him yet. At first we blamed it on April not having “his guys” on the team and now its all on Rolle. Sure, we are missing Colt Anderson who was rock solid for us in the past but Special Teams has been a weakness of this team for years and cutting Rolle does nothing to fix that.

    • http://twitter.com/EaglesScout73 Brush

      Him missing key tackles, several times on special teams probably ended it for him here

      • whiskeybill

        I’m not saying that Rolle was a good special teamer I’m making the case that there is an institutional problem here bigger than any one player.

        • ICDogg

          I think it’s related to the fact that the best special teamers have been sidelined: Jordan, Colt, Riley Cooper. Special teams is less about precision and repetition than it is about an attitude, a willingness to play with abandon and sacrifice the body if need be to make plays.

          • whiskeybill

            For Kickoff returns the Eagles average 19.1 yards in 2012 (31st in the NFL) and 20.9 yards in 2011 (31st in the NFL). At the same time we allowed opponents an average of 30.5 yards in 2012 (29th in the NFL) and 23.1 yards in 2011 (14th in the NFL). Are we missing Jordan, Anderson, and Cooper? Sure, but the Special teams have been average to bad since we hired April who was hyped up as one of the best in the League.

    • xlGmanlx

      Based on Rolle’s comments, it didn’t seem like he bought into helping the team on ST. His comments almost made it seem like he was doing the igg’s a favor by being on special teams. The NFL doesn’t lie or care, if you have talent, you will play. He couldn’t win a spot on the starting D and couldn’t be a player in ST, has to go.

      • ICDogg

        That’s the same impression I have. It’s a shame, but he’s not the same guy he was last year, and he needed to be better, not worse.

  • whiskeybill

    I Howie is making Rolle the scapegoat for the disappointing special teams play when the bigger problem is Bobby April. I remember when the Eagles brought April in the fans were excited because we were supposed to be getting one of if not the best special teams coach in the game but we have not gotten anything from him yet. At first we blamed it on April not having “his guys” on the team and now its all on Rolle. Sure, we are missing Colt Anderson who was rock solid for us in the past but Special Teams has been a weakness of this team for years and cutting Rolle does nothing to fix that.

    • http://twitter.com/EaglesScout73 Brush

      Him missing key tackles, several times on special teams probably ended it for him here

      • whiskeybill

        I’m not saying that Rolle was a good special teamer I’m making the case that there is an institutional problem here bigger than any one player.

        • ICDogg

          I think it’s related to the fact that the best special teamers have been sidelined: Jordan, Colt, Riley Cooper. Special teams is less about precision and repetition than it is about an attitude, a willingness to play with abandon and sacrifice the body if need be to make plays.

          • whiskeybill

            For Kickoff returns the Eagles average 19.1 yards in 2012 (31st in the NFL) and 20.9 yards in 2011 (31st in the NFL). At the same time we allowed opponents an average of 30.5 yards in 2012 (29th in the NFL) and 23.1 yards in 2011 (14th in the NFL). Are we missing Jordan, Anderson, and Cooper? Sure, but the Special teams have been average to bad since we hired April who was hyped up as one of the best in the League.

    • xlGmanlx

      Based on Rolle’s comments, it didn’t seem like he bought into helping the team on ST. His comments almost made it seem like he was doing the igg’s a favor by being on special teams. The NFL doesn’t lie or care, if you have talent, you will play. He couldn’t win a spot on the starting D and couldn’t be a player in ST, has to go.

      • ICDogg

        That’s the same impression I have. It’s a shame, but he’s not the same guy he was last year, and he needed to be better, not worse.

  • Docboy

    Yeah… I didn’t see any competitive fire amongs any ST players…it was almost like a ” chore ” they didn’t want to do… That’s on April….

  • Docboy

    Yeah… I didn’t see any competitive fire amongs any ST players…it was almost like a ” chore ” they didn’t want to do… That’s on April….