Zero Bells for Bonchon


Craig La Ban lowers La Boom on Philadelphia’s first franchise of the Korean fried chicken chain, Bonchon. LaBan drops zero bells on the K-Pop blaring, No-Korean-in-the-kitchen Chinatown outpost.

Bonchon does serve many other Korean favorites beyond wings. But there isn’t a single Korean in the kitchen at this Bonchon, owned by Chinese Americans (“I have Korean friends,” Taing notes). And it shows with off-key renditions of bibimbap (with mushy rice), dully flavorless japchae noodles (despite a splash of sweet soy wing sauce), and a seafood-scallion pancake scorched black on the bottom.

Hyped Korean chicken chain arrives, disappoints [Philadelphia Inquirer]
Bonchon [Foobooz]

Gastronaut: Summer in the City

Illustration by Kagan McLeod

Illustration by Kagan McLeod

Philadelphia is a city of neighborhoods? Whatever. People have been spouting that trite crap since the notion of the neighborhood was invented, about any municipal area with a population larger than three. And while arguments can be made for the neighborhood-iness of Philly during the lethargic heat of the dog days (when no one wants to go farther than the corner bar for a cold beer and some company) or the depths of snow-day winters (when having a good restaurant within walking distance can make the difference between sane survival and going all Jack-Nicholson-at-the-Overlook), what Philly really is is a city of festivals. Read more »

Eli Kulp Remains Hospitalized, Grateful for Support

Eli Kulp with Ellen Yin and Mayor Michael Nutter celebrating Kulp being named Best New Chef by Food & Wine.

Eli Kulp with Ellen Yin and Mayor Michael Nutter celebrating Kulp being named Best New Chef by Food & Wine.

According to the Philadelphia Business Journal, chef Eli Kulp remains hospitalized due to injuries he suffered in Tuesday night’s Amtrak derailment. The award winning chef and partner in Fork, High Street on Market and underwent surgery upon arrival at Aria Health-Torresdale on Tuesday.

Today, he was transferred to an undisclosed hospital where he will continue to be cared for.

In a release received by PBJ, Kulp said, “I am grateful for the amount of concern and support from my family, friends, and colleagues. I will continue to lean on your support in the weeks and months ahead as I work through recuperating from this injury.”

The type and severity of his injuries were not disclosed.

UPDATE: Kulp tweets »

Reading Terminal Market Has a New GM

anuj-gupta-400The Reading Terminal Market has been looking for a new general manager since Paul Steinke stepped down in December, in order to run for City Council. Today, the Board of Directors of the Reading Terminal Market Corporation named Anuj Gupta as the new general manager. Gupta comes from Mt.Airy, USA where he served as Executive Director. Gupta has been instrumental in many improvements in Mt. Airy over the past five years including; the resurgence of some of the 6500-6700 blocks of Germantown Avenue; a second location for Wissahickon Charter School; and the birth of Street Fare – Mt. Airy’s successor to Night Market.

Read more »

Now Open: Farmer’s Keep

farmers-keep-940Farmer’s Keep, the fast-casual restaurant at 20th and Ludlow that avoids common allergens, is now open. The restaurant from Josh Bullock includes about 20 built salads or you can build your own off of eight bases and add your own proteins and sides. All the plates are sold by weight ($10 per pound).

Be Well Philly hit Farmer’s Keep for lunch today. Here’s their report.

Farmer’s Keep [Foobooz]

Retro Week: Your Favorite Throwback Dishes In Philly


It being Thursday and us being in a retro kind of mood this week here at Foobooz World HQ, we decided to do our own little game of Throwback Thursday. But rather than asking for ridiculous photos of you passed out drunk in someone’s basement rec room with your parachute pants and Flock Of Seagulls hair, we’re looking for something better. What we want you to reminisce about are your favorite throwback dishes being served in Philly–what you like and where you go to get it today.

What’s that? You want some examples? We’re here to help.

Read more »

Touring Cambodia in Philadelphia

Beef Ceviche at I ♥︎ Cambodia

Beef Ceviche at I ♥︎ Cambodia

Joy Manning writes about Philadelphia’s “Cambodia Town,” the area of South Philadelphia that’s home to Khmer Kitchen and many other authentic Cambodian flavors.

On sunny weekend afternoons, in the shadow of an ornate, golden Buddhist temple, Mifflin Square in South Philadelphia is dotted with charcoal grills, chile-lacquered chicken wings, and thin-sliced fatty beef heavily seasoned with lemongrass sputtering over the coals. Women pound chilies, garlic, and dried shrimp to a paste to season the snappy unripe papaya for the lime-drenched salads they sell to passersby.

Read Manning’s entire piece and then start planning your Cambodian adventure, right here in Philadelphia.

Carving an official Cambodia Town out of South Philadelphia [Philadelphia Inquirer]

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