The forces of Rittenhouse Row, Kevin Sbraga, and Danielle DelRe, of Starr Restaurants, have come together to create an event that will be one to remember. From August 4th to the 7th, the restaurants of Rittenhouse Row will prepare meals unlike the ones on the traditional menus and give you a dining experience that is one of a kind. As of right now, 18 members will participate in the Rittenhouse Row Culinary Collective, but the list is growing.
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This Sunday marks the premiere of Mad Men’s final season and a couple of Philadelphia restaurants are getting into the spirit with special viewing parties.
At Pennsylvania 6, the fun kicks off at 9 p.m. with the Midtown Village turning itself into Mad Six, a night of revelry complete with 1960s-themed food, Mad Men-inspired cocktails and a screening of the show. Admission is free but reservations are strongly encouraged.
Guests are encouraged to dress as Mad Men characters or at least in their period-best. During the show, lights inside will be dimmed and the volume turned up. During commercials, a retro DJ will play.
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If you’re still thinking of sherry and vermouth as drinks for your grandmother or Niles and Frasier Crane, get your head out of your bubblegum vodka. Fortified wine cocktails are fully en vogue, with some bars hosting special events around the ingredient or devoting a page or more to them on their beverage lists.
Square 1682 has led the trend in Philly, slotting these cocktails into their seasonal rotation. Head bartender Chauncey Scates says fortified wines – defined as those with (usually grape-based) distillate added to boost the alcohol content and shelf life – are gaining in popularity in part because they pair so well with food.
“It’s like pairing with wine but with all of those additional ingredients in the cocktail,” she says. “And our chef does a lot of lighter fare like fish and veggies, so I wanted to bring in fortified wines as a big part of our program because they’re not as heavy as some other spirits.”
And yes, we have recipes…