Word from our highly placed sources says to look for a Saturday grand opening on the 1000 block of Race Street, and that (sadly) the dim sum operation will be run off a menu, not with roaming carts full of dumplings and chicken feet.
Fall officially arrives this weekend and the season promises to be a busy one for Philadelphia’s restaurant scene. Here are some of the projects that we’re most looking forward to checking out.
It used to be that the first of the year was the death knell for restaurants. Establishments that couldn’t bare the expense of making it through the winter months often bowed out right after the busy holiday season. But this year we’re seeing shutterings and sales right after Labor Day.
As we mentioned yesterday, Sophia’s didn’t return from summer vacation but it is far from the only closure or sale we’ve seen over the last couple of days. Michael Klein reports on the seeming demise of Village Belle. And today he has news that City Garden has closed at 18th and JFK after 16-years. Maybe Neil Stein is finally ready to take it over?
Dim Sum Garden, the Chinatown dive where the food is always being praised, is moving into a much bigger (and nicer) location in Chinatown. The new spot will be opposite Hop Sing Laundromat on the 1000 block of Race Street.
The Race Street restaurant is still under construction but promises to be a soup dumpling destination away from diesel exhaust.
Photo by Lee
Living on the Vedge enthusiastically endorses Sweetgreen, claiming the University City salad shop puts the “sass back in salad.” [Living on the Vedge]
Drawing for Food wasn’t the biggest fan of Guapos Tacos but they found a taco truck they do like. La Marqueza Taco Truck weekends at 22nd and the Parkway and has been spotted on the 1400 block of Spring Garden on weekdays. [Drawing for Food]
Foodzings over orders at Dim Sum Garden but enjoys it all anyway. [Foodzings]
The Feast gets rather excited for the sandwiches coming out of Jay’s Deli at 13th and Spruce. [The Feast]
Many have exalted the soup dumplings at Dim Sum Garden but Brian Freedman finds that all the dough based menu items are worthy of praise.
The Garden does a bang-up job with their house-made scallion pancakes, too, nearly the texture of phyllo. And, yes, a recent Chinese-American special, fried cheese wontons, were an unexpected joy to eat. The cream-cheese filling was kissed with the sweet funk of onions, hearty seafood and assorted pureed vegetables, all of it lovingly encased in fried dough.
As with all dough-based dishes here, the hand-drawn noodles were a strand by springy strand tour de force of technique. They served as delicate, subtle second-tier players next to softly perfumed, sliced spiced beef, and as ballast for a tub of soup flared with spicy strands of cabbage, hyper-savory slices of pork, and peppery sprouts.
Dim Sum Garden of Good Eatin’ [Philadelphia Weekly]
It may not look like much but “the chances of death are slim and the food is great” at Dim Sum Garden. [Uncle Jimmy Eats]
Genuine Thai food from behind bullet-proof window at Circles in South Philadelphia. [Drawing for Food]
The food’s so good at Honey’s Sit-N-Eat you won’t even mind waiting. [An Empty Fridge]
Philly Phoodie finds the food at Desi Chaat House to be “bursting with fresh exotic flavors.” [Philly Phoodie]
Mac & Cheese bestows the title of best eggplant hoagie on the Â the Giardina at Paesano’s in the Italian Market. [Mac & Cheese]
Philly Phoodie sure gets around. When he’s not in West Philly enjoying Indian food he’s in Center City discovering Pastoral, which he calls the best Korean in Center City. [Philly Phoodie]
Fussing with Forks takes some great food photography. Check out this shot of the half chicken with sides at Percy Street Barbecue and the rest of the site. [Fussing with Forks]
Craig LaBan visits Dim Sum Garden in Chinatown in search of a worthy replacement to Lakeside Chinese Deli and finds perhaps the best scallion pancakes in city and more importantly to adventure seeking diners, “soup dumplings.”
Nip a hole and slurp the juice, for which our charming waitress finally confided the secret: pork “Jell-O” that becomes molten in the steam. Eyes snap open as the liquid rushes across our tongue, intensely savory, with a twinge of soy sweetness followed by the resonance of garlic. A dip in gingery black vinegar washes the tender meat stuffing and dumpling skin down with a bracingly tart smack. Want another? You bet!
Two Bells – Very Good
Dumpling heaven in Chinatown [Philadelphia Inquirer]