The Best Things to Do, Places to Eat and Adventures to Have This Summer in Philly

Outdoor dining at Morgan's Pier on the Delaware Riverfront | Photo courtesy courtesy Morgan's Pier

Outdoor dining at Morgan’s Pier on the Delaware Riverfront | Photo courtesy courtesy Morgan’s Pier

Does anyone else feel like this year is flying by insanely fast? We’re currently staring down Memorial Day weekend, friends, marking the unofficial start of summer, if you can believe it. As all the rain these past few months has left us feeling ever so robbed of a postcard-perfect spring, we’re pinning all our hopes on what summer has in store for us here in Philly. Read more »

What Lies Beneath: Double Knot Reviewed

In the basement of Double Knot | Photo via Double Knot

In the basement of Double Knot | Photo via Double Knot

Breakfast, 9:30 a.m. // Like Garfield and 10,000 novelty t-shirts, I don’t do mornings. Particularly not ones that haven’t snuck up on me accidentally—the sun rising while I’m still out doing whatever it is that insomniac food editors do—and caught me still in last night’s clothes.

One of the reasons I became a writer was so I’d never have to get up before noon. Sadly, somewhere in my youth I missed an important distinction. Some writers get to sleep the mornings away, sure. They’re generally the ones who own more than zero berets and have strong opinions about pencils. And then there are the ones who actually have to make a living.

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Rosa Blanca Cafe Being Replaced at Dilworth Park

dilworth park view from cafe 940On Wednesday, June 1st, Dilworth Park will have a new cafe. Brûlée Catering is taking over the cafe which has been run by Garces Events as Rosa Blanca Cafe. On Thursday, May 26th, the cafe will close for renovations. Brûlée will provide a concession in front of the building to accommodate park visitors through the changeover.

The new cafe will offer a menu of American cuisine, sandwiches, salads and healthy snacks. The cafe will also offer coffee, craft beer, wine and cocktails.

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Who Uses GrubHub to Order Food from Downey’s?

Downey's - Front and South streets

Downey’s at Front and South streets in Center City Philadelphia. (Photo: Dan McQuade)

It’s been a rough decade for Downey’s.

The bar filed for bankruptcy in September 2010. The next year, inspectors found rat carcasses at the restaurant — two days before St. Patrick’s Day and just before the bar went on Jon Taffer’s Bar Rescue.

Founded by Jack Downey in 1976, the bar was long a hangout for Irish Philadelphians. Downey sold it to his chef, Domenico Centofanti, in 2003. By the time it was on Bar Rescue, the bar was struggling. Centofanti said the closure of Front Street cut his business in half.

“This was absolutely the worst and dirtiest restaurant I’ve ever set foot in,” Brian Duffy, a former chef who helped try to return the bar to its past glory on Bar Rescue, said at the time. “There was trash in the hallways. Dead lobsters everywhere. The walk-in fridge was more like an air conditioner. The products in there were rancid. It was 52 degrees and it’s supposed to be under 40. It’s like throwing a festival for bacteria.”

Downey’s had been named the Worst Irish Bar in America. Read more »

Neshaminy Creek Brewing Opening a Taproom in Fishtown

Neshaminy Creek's new tap room at 957 Frankford Avenue

Neshaminy Creek’s new tap room at 957 Frankford Avenue

Neshaminy Creek Brewing, which has been thriving at their Bucks County home, has announced it is expanding to Philadelphia with a taproom. The brewery has signed a lease for 957 Frankford Avenue, across from the Fillmore.

The brewery is taking advantage of a newly created advantage for Pennsylvania brewers. The change in the PLCB code allows breweries to open two satellite locations without the expense and time of adding another license.

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Tonight: A Seed Dinner, Center City Sips Preview and Strong Beers

seed dinner 940Tonight, Buckminster’s chef Rob Marzinsky is joining up with Brick and Mortar’s Brian Ricci for a five-course dinner at Brick and Mortar to benefit the Roughwood Seed Collection. The dinner uses products from Roughwood and includes a complimentary cocktail from bartender Christina Rando. Roughwood is dedicated to preserving rare seeds and continuing their use in the world. The five-course dinner is $55 per person and there will also be seeds for sale at the restaurant.

Dinner is $55 per person and is offered between 6:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. The menu is available here.

More events tonight »

Ambler Yards Beer Garden Up and Running

ambler yards guacamole 940

Philadelphia isn’t the only place to have pop-up beer gardens. Ambler is now home to the Ambler Yards Beer Garden. The pop-up beer garden opened on May 19th and will run through the end of June. It is open Thursdays 4:30 to 9:30 p.m. and Saturdays from 2:00 to 7:00 p.m.

On Thursday, May 26th, the Ambler Yards Beer Garden is having event with free admission, where two craft beers, wine and Mexican fare from Cantina Feliz will be available for purchase.

The garden is in an open-air meadow at the Ambler Yards campus (300 Brookside Ave) and features yard games like Kan Jam for guests to enjoy.  This year’s menu includes the likes of Cantina Feliz’s guacamole and tacos to pair with drinks like Tecate and Lagunitas IPA.

Kids are welcome and the music is always live. Sounds like the perfect way to start off the summer. To gain admission RSVP to the event online at their EventBrite page.

Ambler Yards Beer Garden [Facebook]

SpOt Burger Rolls Out New Menu with Hot Dogs and Sweets

Spot Burger at 2821 West Girard Avenue | Photo by Arthur Etchells

Spot Burger at 2821 West Girard Avenue | Photo by Arthur Etchells

SpOt Burger which opened its brick-and-mortar storefront in Brewerytown back in January has rolled out the first major revision to its menu. The Best of Philly winning cheesesteak is there as well as the impressive Jawn and Sloppy Joe, as are the burgers that range from the SpOt burger with bacon, cheddar, pickles, coleslaw and SpOt sauce to the over-the-top Umami burger made with mushrooms, grilled onions, lettuce, ssamjang, pickled daikon, cucumber and teriyaki. New however is the of option mini beef or chicken burgers served with cheese,pickles and onions.

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Cook and Solo Open Dizengoff in New York

cook solo dizengoff nyc 940

Michael Solomonov and Steve Cook celebrate Dizengoff’s arrival in New York.

This Wednesday, Michael Solomonov and Steve Cook will open their first restaurant outside of Philadelphia. The dynamic duo are opening a branch of Dizengoff in Chelsea Market. The official opening is set for Wednesday, May 25th but Eater NY reports the hummusiya opened softly yesterday.

Dizengoff NYC has been named one of the 26 most exciting openings of spring, 2016 by Bloomberg Business and like its Philadelphia counterpart, it will be all about the hummus. The New York location will also offer Israeli wines and shakshouka all day everyday. The opening moves Dizengoff up a spot on our Fast Casual Tracker. An announcement of a third location might keep them climbing.

Watch Cook and Solo bring hummus to NYC »

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