Photos by Kate Devlin
We’ve been racking our brains to remember whether or not we’ve ever covered a Philadelphia home with a similar quirk, but have come up with zilch. It might be safe to say, then, that this is a first on Property: this trinity home on a sliver of Darien Street has a bathroom balcony.
Though maybe not a balcony balcony as much as it’s one of those tiny French balconies with little to no room for sitting and lounging. Still, it is a fairly unique trinity, one that’s been fully renovated and expanded. The private passageway leading to its entrance is newly designed, and the home itself was rebuilt by carpenters. Plus, in addition to having three floors of living space, the lower-level has been finished and has an access window/door and full bathroom–potential third bedroom? Office maybe?
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Photo credit: Jeff Fusco
In an effort to raise more money for the Philadelphia Housing Trust Fund and combat land speculation, Pennsylvania Coalition for Affordable Communities (PCAC) presented an interesting idea that could have widespread implications on the real estate and housing market.
According to PlanPhilly, the group is calling for an increase of the Realty Transfer Tax from 4% by an additional 1.5% for any property selling more than once within 24 months– a ‘flip tax’. PCAC calculated that the bump would have raised and extra $12 million for the Housing Trust Fund in 2013, thus, doubling their budget for programs that help low income home owners repair their homes, support affordable housing development, and prevent homelessness.
While ending widespread speculation and creating economically diverse neighborhoods are good things, it’s possible that tax hike such as this could stunt smaller scale real estate investment, hinder first time homebuyers or even sellers who aren’t speculators who are essentially penalized by the tax. Do you think a ‘flip tax’ is the way to go or should Philadelphia look towards more creative ways to combat speculation?
Pac-Man on the Streets of Philly!
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Put down that Dutch Cookery book, Joncarl!
I had dinner at Noord last night on East Passyunk Avenue, but before I left I made sure to bend Chef / owner Joncarl Lachman’s ear about what he has planned for his new location in the Italian Market.
First things first: They’re deciding between two names: Bistro Neuf or Restaurant Neuf. The name Neuf, because “neuf” means 9 in French and the restaurant is on 9th Street—in the former location of Argentinian steakhouse 943.
The menu will be North African with French influences. I’m told to expect hearty Moroccan tajines (yes, some with pigeon), braised meats and even bouillabaisse.
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Long before Throwback Thursdays were a thing on Facebook and Twitter, we used to occasionally run a feature called Retro-raunts. But since Throwback Thursdays are the flavor of the day and PhillyHistory.org is still one of my favorite web sites, we were inspired to bring back the feature. Check out the above photo of the original Di Bruno Bros. from 1954. Look closely and you can make out the Di Bruno Bros. sign.
Throwback to 1954 [Di Bruno Bros. Twitter]
Photo by Jeff Fusco
Last month, Ginger Snap Grocery became the Italian Market’s first organic stand when it opened in front of 907 9th Street (between Christian and Montrose). Ginger Snap was also the first stand to open since city code was changed to give the South 9th Street Business Association more flexibility in shaping the mix of vendors on the block.
And now the Passyunk Post is reporting on two more stalls are coming, a roasted nut stand and taco stand are on their way to 9th Street.
Two more Italian Market stands on the way as new manager fixes 1907 rules [Passyunk Post]
Italian Market [Philadelphia Magazine]
Some of the goods at Ginger Snap’s Grocery // Photo via Facebook
Add this to the very long list of wonderful stuff you can shop for at the Italian market: Along with fresh pasta, fresh mozzarella and the best pesto of your life, you can now grab your organic fruits and veggies at one of the 9th street market’s stalls, too. According to the Passyunk Post, the Italian Market’s very first organic stall, Ginger Snap’s Grocery, has opened up shop and is selling fresh organic produce along with other drool-worthy items to throw in your shopping cart like honey, pickles and chocolate sauce. Mmmmm.
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Yesterday, I got home from working late and stumbled upon something really interesting. I was hungry, it was 1:30 in the morning, and I was scrolling through GrubHub’s suspect list of restaurants open for delivery late at night.
Nina’s Trattoria, yes the little BYOB in the Italian Market, was hidden amongst all the chinese takeouts and gross pizza parlors. I called to make sure they were open, and to my surprise, somebody answered. I ordered my food, it came within the hour, and the bliss I felt chowing down on their penne bolognese with a side of meatballs at 2:30 a.m. is a feeling you can only experience for yourself.
David Neukirch, one of the two brothers that own Nina’s explained, “working in the industry, you get out late at night, and you end up eating junk. So we’re giving people some good food to eat late at night.” He mentioned that they’ll soon be adding to the late night menu as well—pizza to be specific.
They’re open late for delivery Tuesday-Sunday until 2 a.m. on weekdays, and 3 a.m. on weekends (Nina’s encourages placing your order before 1:45 a.m. on weekdays, and 2:45 a.m. on weekends, and a call ahead won’t hurt either).
Sometimes, good news just falls in your lap.
Nina’s Trattoria [Official]
We roundup 11 of the weekend’s must-do events in Philly — including annual favorites the Kensington Kinetic Sculpture Derby and the Italian Market Festival.
All the monthly bouts of secret-sharing and storytelling culminate this Friday, as First Person Arts crowns Philadelphia's Best Storyteller. Winners from the monthly storytelling gatherings compete tonight for the grand prize, the title of "The Best Storyteller in Philadelphia" — high praise, indeed. Speakers tell stories under the theme "Out There," so expect performances that are just that. The event will be hosted by Corey Cohen and feature Steve Clark, Kat Duggan, and Dave Hillis. Friday, May 16th, $20, Underground Arts, 1200 Callowhill Street.
Some of Philly's most exciting street artists are showing work in James Oliver Gallery's newest exhibition, "I Am Here." On display will be work by graffiti artist Cornbread, world-famous glass muralist Isaiah Zagar, and Streets Dept. photographer Conrad Benner — all folks Content Specialist & Educator of “I Am Here" Ginger Rudolph calls true artistic trailblazers. "They bond our communities with shared visceral moments — constantly shaping a culture that defies the trappings of being boxed into idioms that try to define creativity in terms of subversive elements of expression. These artists follow a history of groundbreakers whose actions resulted from a need to be heard." Opening reception, Friday, May 16th, 6:30-10 p.m., free, showing through August 2nd, James Oliver Gallery, 723 Chestnut Street.
The rain is supposed to dissipate just in time for this weekend's annual 9th Street Italian Market Festival. Join the crowds packed into the nation's oldest outdoor market to enjoy live entertainment, tons of grub, crafting hubs, and South Philly people-watching out the wazoo. Saturday and Sunday, May 17th and 18th, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Italian Market, 919 South 9th Street.
Leave it to Kensington to come up with the whackiest, most interesting and downright weird iteration of a parade even among Philly's plethora of unique day fests. The Kensington Sculpture Derby returns this Saturday, with human-powered floats — all works of art on their own — turning the neighborhood into a true spectacle. It's an honest testament to human ingenuity, and all the things a soldering iron and a little gumption can achieve. Saturday, May 17th, noon-5 p.m., Trenton and Norris streets.
If you're in 'festival withdrawal' after last week's shindigs, look no further than Clark Park's Party in the Park. Eat well, with onsite food trucks aplenty. Check out the beer garden, listen to some great live music, and enter raffles with $1000 prizes. It's a perfect opportunity to unwind with a beer and some outdoor games, or just take in the forecasted beautiful West Philly weekend. Saturday, May 17th, 4-8 p.m., Clark Park.
From Foobooz: The DO|AC Fire on the Water Festival is a free two day festival (May 17th-May 18th at 800 New Hampshire Ave.) that will be host to theWorld Famous Firefighter Combat Challenge Tour in Atlantic City and the 7th annual "Guns vs. Hoses" Battle at the Basin, which looks to be a cops vs. firefighters boxing match. What does this have to do with Foobooz? Well, there's going to be a beer garden, with food vendors, music, and according to their facebook, Seinfeld's Soup Nazi. More info here.
From Be Well Philly: This Sunday, the Philly Yoga Factory is partnering with Lululemon Walnut Street to host a free Synergy Partner Yoga class—a therapeutic yoga that incorporates elements of Thai massage, yoga and Capoeira, all done with a partner. Sounds like a nice way to start your Sunday off, huh? The free class will be from 10 to 11 a.m. at Bikram Yoga of Philadelphia (where all Philly Yoga Factory classes are held) on Sansom Street. More info here.
Score free entrance to plenty of Philly museums in honor of International Museum Day and Art Museum Day this Sunday. That means a trip to the Philadelphia Museum of Art ( 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway) costs nothing. Admission to Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (118 North Broad Street)? Zip. The historic Penn Museum (3260 South Street) opens its collections for the appealing price of nada. Or check out some modern masterpieces at the Institute of Contemporary Art (118 South 36th Street) without spending a penny. No reservations are necessary. Just show up Sunday to take advantage of the town's culture on the cheap. Sunday, May 18th.
From Be Well Philly: Come ready to work out at Eakins Oval this Sunday, May 18th, for the first-ever Day in the Park event. Hosted by Naked Juice and Philly’s Core Fitness, this event is packed with fitness and fun. There will free fitness activities, like a Core Fitness boot camp class (2 to 3 p.m.) and a massive tug of war competition, plus prizes and giveaways, free juice and live music from 95.7 Ben-FM. More here.
Get your fill of absurdism Friday night with IRC Theater Co.'s slick lineup of exciting new short plays. Featuring works from Tony-winner Christopher Durang (helmer of Philadelphia Theatre Company's recent Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike), there will be tons to see and experience in this rare performance of his shorter works. proceeds will create IRC's spring production of Rhinocerous, and a preview of the upcoming show will debut during the event. Sunday, May 18th, 6 p.m. & 8 p.m., $20, L'Etage Cabaret, 624 South 6th Street.
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The search for Super Bowl frijoles led Craig LaBan to Mole Poblano in the Italian Market and his latest review for the Inquirer.
The weekend specials, though, distinguish this tidy tiled storefront from the many others. Chief among them is the barbacoa, made here with traditional goat (instead of the more common lamb) braised for hours with avocado leaves in a garlicky guajillo chile marinade resonant with oregano and ginger. Served with a chickpea-studded consommé made from the braising juices, the platter was especially soul-satisfying when I shredded the tender meat back into the broth with rice for a hearty soup.
Two Bells – Very Good
Mole Poblano: True Mexican flavors, and some of the city’s best tamales [Philadelphia Inquirer]
Mole Poblano [Foobooz]
Chickie’s Italian Deli
Photo via Chickie’s Facebook page.
— self-proclaimed originator of the veggie hoagie — has been in business at 10th and Federal since 1993, and received countless accolades, including more than one from Philadelphia Magazine. Now the business in toto is for sale — and we’re talking everything
Of course, the business includes all the large items, like the commercial gas stove, the built-in AC units, the refrigerators, the freezers, the counters, deep fryers, etc. But the inclusion of small items — like cash registers and a small microwave — reminds me of Georges Perrier’s poignant Craigslist-advertised estate sale). It just feels sad.
There’s also an “anti-pasta box” listed, which I’m embarrassed to say I had to read a couple of times before I understood that no one at Chickie’s has anything against pasta.
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