Sneak Preview: COOK’s May Schedule

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It’s that time again, folks. COOK is putting tickets for its May classes up for sale, and you’re getting a special, early look. So whether you’re looking to learn about bread with Jonnathan Yacashin of Noord, drink some local beer, have a Mother’s Day Pie Party, or dig into the differences between Old and New World wines from the experts, this is your chance.

You can check out the full May schedule after the jump. Tickets go on sale tomorrow, April 6, at 6pm.

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We All Want To Eat Chocolate For Dinner

You know you’ve done it. Made a dinner out of things that your mom would never let you consider a meal. Like that time you ate ten slices of individually-wrapped cheese and two slices of bread and called it “grilled cheese”? Or that lunch you made out of an entire bag of Skittles because Skittles are made with some infinitesimal amount of actual fruit juice, so if you eat enough of them its like eating actual fruit because math?

But now, on Monday, April 24, you can go and have an entire dinner based solely around the growing stages of the cacao plant because the crew from Fork in Old City are getting together with chocolatier Chris Curtain of Eclat to offer a 7-course chocolate dinner.

Take that, mom.

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Today Is Free Water Ice Day At Rita’s

Rita’s mascot

Photo: Dan McQuade

The best water ice flavor available to the Rita’s connoisseur is Swedish Fish.

No, I don’t care what you say. You’re wrong. We’ve already tested them all, subjected them to taste tests, polled respondents and did everything else that amateur scientists must do when coming up with a ranked list of every kind of anything. And when it came time to choose the best flavor, I threw all that data away and chose Swedish Fish because I like it best. Because I am basically a sticky-faced 11-year-old boy stuck inside the body of a grown-ass man and I ain’t changing.

Anyway, we’ve got a ranked list of Rita’s Water Ice flavors, and since today is Free Water Ice Day at Rita’s (it being the first day of spring and all), we figured today would be a good day to trot it out. You should read it. Like right now. Because science. And because the free water ice promotion ends at 9pm tonight.

Ranked: Rita’s Water Ice Flavors [f8b8z]

Educational Programming and Vegan Food at South Philly Barbacoa

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South Philly Barbacoa has always been about more than just tacos. One of the most openly political restaurants in the city, owners Ben Miller and Christina Martinez have always used their food as a way to engage with the community and their community to try to affect change in the wider world.

So it’s really no surprise that they’ve begun using Monday nights as “teach-ins” at South Philly Barbacoa–bringing in a series of speakers for a program they’re calling “Justice and Agua Fresca”.

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Dizengoff Rolls Out a Weekly Family-Style Israeli Dinner Series

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Update: Tickets are now for sale through the Dizengoff online store.

Back in September, Dizengoff‘s NYC location started doing a weekly dinner series, which was great for the people of New York but NOT so great for us here in Philly–Dizengoff’s home base.

But that’s cool because guess what? The dinners were such a success in New York that Michael Solomonov and his crew have decided to bring the idea back home to Philly. And so, starting in April, Saturday nights at Diz will mean a three-course, seasonal, family-style dinner of Israeli-inspired dishes for $60 a head–including tax, but NOT including beverages (which will include beer, wines and special paired cocktails fore those who are interested.

But wait, there’s a catch…

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Russian Soup Dumplings and Matzo Scrapple At Bing Bing’s Neshaminy Creek Beer Dinner

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Ben Puchowitz and his crew from Bing Bing Dim Sum are not exactly shy when it comes to fusion. They’re not what you would call “traditionalists” when it comes to designing their menus full of roast pork bao with long hots or turnip cakes with matzo.

But on March 14, they’re stretching even more than usual, putting together a pairing menu “highlighting the similarities & harmony between Eastern European and Cantonese Cuisine,” according to partner Shawn Daragh, all for a beer dinner featuring Neshaminy Creek Brewing.

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Sneak Preview: April At COOK

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April classes at COOK are going on sale this weekend. And like we do, we’re giving you a sneak preview of what’s coming up so that you can get a jump on all those non-Foobooz-reading people out there and snatch up all the best classes for yourselves.

So if you’re interested in learning about pastries from Pat O’Malley of Hungry Pigeon or talking cocktails with the crew from Olde Bar or just hanging out with Res Ipsa’s Michael Vincent Ferreri for a night of Sicilian food, you’re in the right place. The full list of classes is after the jump and tickets are going on sale this Saturday, March 4, at 2pm. So like the Boy Scouts say, be prepared.

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Saying Goodbye With Sushi

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For certain people out there, that photo above is a kitchen dream team — four sushi chefs, all long-time friends and compatriots, who have worked for years to bring serious sushi and Asian fusion to the Philly suburbs.

In order, from left to right, it’s Toyoji Yamada, Koichi Aoyama, Akihiko Takeshima and Toshio Hosaka, and they all work now at restaurants in the Win Signature Restaurants group–namely Teikoku in Newtown Square, Azie in Media and Azie on Main (Villanova). But back in the day? They did their time at Morimoto, Pod and the now almost legendary Genji sushi bar on Sansom Street where they all met.

These guys are, essentially, part of the living institutional memory of sushi and Japanese cuisine in Philadelphia. And on Sunday, March 26, they’re all getting together for one dinner to say goodbye to one of their own.

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Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner At Aldine?

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In terms of chef-y collaboration dinners, George Sabatino has put together some of the more interesting ones lately at his Center City restaurant Aldine. I mean, there are the now-annual Christmas Eve pie dinners with Stargazy’s Sam Jacobson. There are the whole-animal dinners and the team-ups with local brewers and distillers.

But how about getting one of the best chefs in Philly AND one of the best chefs in Pittsburgh together for a one-night-only six-course collaboration dinner with Sabatino and Aldine’s crew? That would be pretty awesome, right?

And how about if we told you it would only run you $100 to get a seat at the table?

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There’s A Big Garces Foundation Food Event Happening On March 24

Jose Garces prepping for class at Volver's Summer School

I know it’s still February, but it already feels like spring outside. And spring is when all the big food festivals start popping back up on the calendar. So it just seems like a good time to remind everyone that on March 24, at the Loews Philadelphia on Market Street, Jose Garces and a whole bunch of chefs are going to be getting together for a big party and event to benefit the Garces Foundation (organized in 2012 to help Philly’s immigrant community–particularly those who work in the food service industry).

So it’s a big party. All the best people are going to be there. And the price of your ticket is going to help immigrant restaurant crews and their families. How could it get better?

How about if you were able to save a few bucks on your ticket if you bought it before the end of the month?

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