Best Cheesesteak: Philly’s Finest Sambonis | Photo by Courtney Apple / Styling by Lisa Russell
The Washington Post acknowledged it yesterday and we’ve known it practically from the crib. Philadelphians know good sandwiches. And here are the Best of Philly winning sandwiches for 2015, including the best cheesesteak, hoagie and roast pork sandwich.
Best Sandwiches in Philly [Best of Philly]
One of the coolest things about the Philly Gayborhood is the fact that it is infused with so many other “straight” businesses, so to speak. Sure, we have a ton of gay bars, but there are also great eateries that cater to anyone who wants a fantastic cocktail and a delicious bite to eat. We rounded up our picks of five great places in the Gayborhood to grab happy hour that aren’t gay bars, but given their proximity in the ‘hood, you’ll be joined by plenty of great company as you wash down some tasty nibbles with a cocktail or two.
The bartenders at Garces Trading Company know what they are doing, and their happy hour is a perfect time to test out the wide variety of drinks the restaurant offers, plus sample their amazing wine selection. The newly-expanded bar means that there's room for everyone, plus the awesome food deals will satisfy any appetite: I love the $5 Margherita flatbread and the house-made mozzarella. Happy hour Monday-Friday 3 to 7pm, 1111 Locust Street
One taste of the $4 edamame dumplings and you'll be hooked. The Asian-inspired eats at Sampan's 7-day-a-week happy hour are enough for you to fight for a bar seat, but the drinks are also amazing: There's a rotating cocktail on special every night, plus a ton of other wines and beers to wash down the ridiculously cheap (but amazing) food selections. The tofu lettuce wraps are my favorite, and who can pass up the little, bitty soft serve ice cream cones at the end of your meal? Happy hour 7 days a week 4 to 7pm, 124 South 13th Street
Let's get this out of the way: You do not have to be vegan to fall in love with Vedge, and if you're in the mood for a well-crafted cocktail, this is the place to be. They do rotate their happy hour drink selections frequently, but the gin buck is pretty awesome. Also, you must get the Korean seitan taco (trust me on this one), and I'll bet you'll be ordering more than one after you taste it. Happy hour Monday-Friday 5 to 7 pm, 1221 Locust Street
You honestly won't mind squeezing into the tiny, quaint bar at Zavino during their happy hour: The best pizza in the hood is only $8 and is made fresh before your eyes in a brick oven. There are also a ton of wine and beer specials to wash down those carbs, and the friendly, warm, and cozy environment is a great place to take a date. Happy hour Monday-Friday 4:30-6:30 pm, 112 South 13th Street
Sure, Valanni isn't "gay" so to speak, but it seems to attract just about everyone in the hood for their happy hour specials: half-off speciality drinks and wines by the glass, $5 you call it, and $3 Yuenglings, plus an assortment of tasty tapas. The cucumber martini is my go-to weapon of choice, plus the people watching and awesome dance beats make this the early evening spot to be seen. Happy hour Monday-Friday 4:30-7 pm, Saturday 12 to 3 pm, 1229 Spruce Street
ActionAIDS Dining Out for Life ambassadors open up about how HIV/AIDS has affected their lives, and why you should dine out for life on April 24th. Today: Alayna Sands.
My name is … Alayna Sands
What’s your Philly connection?
I grew up in Tucson, Ariz.; however both my parents are from Philadelphia. I moved to Philly about seven years ago, after attending school in Pittsburgh, and it has been home ever since.
What do you do for work?
I work in Human Resources.
The biggest thing I have learned from my experience with HIV/AIDS is …
It has motivated me to be compassionate. You may have HIV/AIDS and consequently endure some additional struggles. Yet you can still choose to live your life with dignity — and there are supportive communities out there who will help you.
Any Dining Out for Life restaurant recommendations?
The Gold Standard. They have good food and a great staff that will take care of you. There’s also Garces Trading Company. I love everything about that place.
In three words, describe the perfect dining out experience …
Family, friends, food!
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The Toast at Ten will be at Garces Trading Co. tonight.
Here’s our picks for what to do today and this evening for Philly Wine Week.
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We’re half-way through Philly Wine Week, are your teeth stained yet? Here’s what’s going on for Wednesday, March 26th.
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Jose Garces’ Garces Trading Company is rolling out a new brunch menu this weekend. Among the options is Brunch Steak Frites for the table. For $29 per person, guests can get grilled flat iron steak, sunny side up eggs, potato rösti, truffled sauce Béarnaise. A $22 prix-fixe option gives diners two courses, GTC coffee or tea and a basket of house-made pastries.
In addition to the prix-fixe options the menu is available a la carte. New options include French Toast with spiced brioche and served with confiture du lait and blood orange and Poached Scrambled Eggs with kale pesto, pecorino, and toasted sourdough.
Garces Trading Co.’s deep dish pizza will also be available along with a selection of sides like Maple Mascarpone Polenta.
It ain’t brunch if you ain’t drinkin’ »
$5 menu at Garces Trading Co. | Photo by Emily Teel
It’s the last week of October and that means a couple of good deals are coming to their end. Route 6 has been hosting Lobster Month with half-off several lobster-centric dishes on their menu. And the poorly named Garces-tober at Garces Trading Company will be bowing out after October 31st. The deal is as good as the name is bad though with a $5 bar menu being offered from 3 to 7 p.m.
“This is basically Garces Trading Company 3.0” says General Manager Seth Lieberman. The Trading Company has recently reopened following the transformation of the retail cheese and charcuterie areas into an 18-seat zinc bar. Garces Restaurant Group has slowly transitioned The Trading Company (originally conceived as a marketplace where shoppers could pick-up imported cheeses, charcuterie, olive oil, and the like), away from the retail model towards one for dining. The effect of the renovation is seamless. Besides the olive-oil tasting area that divides the dining room from the bar, I doubt that the first-time diner would know that the restaurant was ever anything but a neighborhood bistro.
Despite the changes, Lieberman’s goal is that the restaurant remain casual and approachable–a neighborhood place, but one where each menu item is influenced by the ingredients that would have appeared in the refrigerated cases in those early days.
The new bar itself is pleasant, boasting a menu of classic cocktails (including a beautifully balanced Aviation), imported beers, and approachable wines, alongside adorned mozzarellas and small dishes of meatballs. What’s more, for the month of October the Trading Company is celebrating Garce-Tober, a promotion that, despite having a terrible name, is rock-solid. The entire bar menu of stretched-to-order mozzarellas (regularly $6), and meatballs (regularly $7) is available for $5 each between the hours of 3:00 and 7:00 pm. Even better, beers, their five specialty cocktails, and wines by the glass are also only $5 each.
Check out some snaps from inside the newly-redesigned Garces Trading Company after the jump.
Food and bar porn, right this way
It’s not just the extra “o” that separates the two desserts. Macarons and macaroons are both sweet desserts that use egg whites and sugar as a meringue base and get their names from the Italian word for “meringue”—but it’s pretty much apples and oranges from there.
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Calling all meat lovers: Garces Trading Company has answered your prayers by dishing out Endless Steak Frites for only $25.
After recently visiting southern France, Chef Jose Garces was inspired by the classic dish and decided to add it to his menu at Garces Trading Co. Endless Steak Frites is offered during lunch and dinner and are served with a green salad starter.
The meal includes Endless Grilled Hanger Steak and House Duck Fat French Fries.
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