“As noted earlier today, Cantina Feliz got its review from Craig LaBan over the weekend, scoring two bells and the minor complaint that partners Brian Sirhal (who runs the front of the house) and chef Tim Spinner haven’t yet stepped fully out of the shadow of their former employer, Jose Garces. Spinner did some serious Garces time, working under him at Stephen Starr’s El Vez, at Garces’s first solo venture, Amada, then as chef de cuisine at Distrito. Sirhal earned his stripes as beverage director at Distrito before he and high school buddy Spinner jumped out for Fort Washington and their own thing at Cantina Feliz.
Those kinds of influences can be tough to shake off–especially since Feliz is working in the same culinary tradition as Distrito. Might’ve been easier had Sirhal and Spinner opened a sushi bar or a falafel cart, but they didn’t. They chose fancy-pantsy Mexican. And while the Inquirer review was absolutely a big deal, they cooked for someone even more important than LaBan the week before it hit the stands.
Sunday the 17th: The day that Jose came for dinner.”
Cooking for critics is hard. Cooking for your former boss and mentor? That’s harder. Check out the details in “A Review, An Expansion, And the Blessing Of A Former Boss“
“We know many are counting down the days to Krispy Kreme’s Center City opening on May 4th but we’re even more excited for another countdown, this one for the Diving Horse in Avalon. The Pub & Kitchen crew returns to the shore on May 20th with some of the same favorites from last year but some new twists and bites to excite.”
Check out details on the new season for Diving Horse in “Prepare to Dive“