DIY Down the Shore: Eating Lolita With Marcie Turney’s Mexican-Style Street Corn

Courtesy of Barbuzzo
To help your summer along, Foobooz plans to give you some recipes by notable chefs and bartenders in Philadelphia. We’re calling it the DIY Down the Shore series, and we’ll be posting them all week. We’re bringing Philly’s dining scene into your summer homes.

During the warmer months, Jersey isn’t good for just its beaches, but its sweet corn, too. Marcie Turney, executive chef and owner of basically every restaurant on 13th street in Midtown Village, knows this to be true. Turney’s summer recipe, Mexican Style Street Corn, is just about the most delicious way you can serve up one of Jersey’s best ingredients. The dish can also be found on the menu at her Mexican restaurant Lolita, but we couldn’t be happier to have this recipe in our hands. Go ahead, take it down the shore with you and see how good the summer can taste.

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Frozen Budino Pops Are Back!

Barbuzzo- Budino Pops - HighRes - Credit Jason Varney

Yes, they’re back. Frozen Budino Pops have returned to Midtown Village. Beginning Friday, July 11th summer on 13th street can officially begin.

All hail the return of chef Marcie Turney and Valerie Safran’s ever so decadent, totally scrumptious, melt-in-your mouth dessert. If you’ve never tasted the perfection that is the frozen budino pop, its the grown-up version of your favorite summer popsicle.

Chef Turney wraps a core of magic salted caramel and dark chocolate cookie crumbs with frozen caramel pudding, then hand-dips it in happiness dark chocolate and sprinkles Maldon sea salt on top. The pops are a seasonal play on the best-selling Budino dessert offered at the restaurant duo’s acclaimed Barbuzzo.

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DIY Taco Night at Lolita

Prepare to get your hands a little messy.

But you can lick them clean afterwards, because Lolita is holding a DIY Taco Night this Sunday, July 6th and Monday, July 7th.

Each person of your party will choose a primary taco filler, served family style, from a list which includes korean style flank steak w/ jicama kimchi and cornflake crusted mahi w/ chipotle mayonesa, just to name a couple. You can dress up your taco with mexican street corn a bit of queso de oaxaca or some avocado-tomatillo salsa if you prefer. Remember to leave room to finish your hands on dining experience with some Mexican spiced chocolate pot de crème. See the flyer below for more details.

The price of the event is $35 per person.

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The Revisit: Lolita

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“You can drink as many of these as you want,” our server said brightly. “They’re good for you!”

The concoction in question, a Green Garden Margarita, featured what Lolita’s new menu called “green stuff” and our waitress had likened to a “juice cleanse, only with tequila in it.”

So there you have it, ladies and gentlemen! The reason Marcie Turney and Valerie Safran, after ten years running Lolita–every Center City twenty-something’s favorite modern Mexican BYOB–went out and got a liquor license: to dole out Mason jars of juiced spinach, kale, celery, basil, cucumber, ginger and Cozadores Reposado.

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Lolita Is All Set to Reopen Tonight

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Marcie Turney and Valerie Safran’s first restaurant is all grown up. Lolita, which opened as a BYOB ten years ago comes back tonight with a liquor license and a new look, the result of a months long renovation. Among the changes, a sixteen seat bar and chef’s counter that looks into the open kitchen.

Also revamped is the menu. Inspired by Turney’s recent trips to Mexico City, the food is inspired by Mexican street food and includes tacos, ceviches and other traditional plates. Rest assured carne asada loyalist, that signature Lolita dish remains. Freshly made tortillas, formed from a hand-cranked press in the open kitchen will form the base for eight taco dishes that populate the menu. A rotating spit, or trompo, will slow cook layers of thinly cut meats.

Drinks and the full menu » 

About Last Night: Lolita, Reborn

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Valerie Safran and Marcie Turney are still a couple of weeks away from opening the re-vamp of their first restaurant, modern Mexican Lolita, but the place already has polish to spare and we were lucky to get an early glimpse.

Safran and Turney have transformed Lolita–once a narrow, rectangular, rosy-hued room with an open kitchen smushed in to the middle of the space–to a layout that feels much more open. While it is, of course, still narrow, the kitchen and bar now run along one side of the room, creating ample bar seating that affords a primo view of cocktails being shaken, tortillas being rolled (on a Mexican machine complete with menacing safety illustrations), and meat sizzling shawarma-style on a vertical roaster.

The food, the drinks and lots of photos, right this way

Turney and Safran to be Honored This Evening

Photo by Jason Varney

Photo by Jason Varney

Tonight is Women Against Abuse’s Dish It Up 2014 event. The night features food, fashion and fun as it features food from premier female restaurateurs and chefs in the city.

Dish It Up 2014 will also feature the brand new Woman of the Year Award to honor women leaders who have shown “extraordinary support of the movement to end domestic violence in Philadelphia.” The first honorees are chef Marcie Turney and Valerie Safran – whose seven restaurants and boutiques on 13th Street in Philadelphia have helped transform the Midtown Village neighborhood into what it is today. 

Tickets for the event are now sold out but join us in congratulating Turney and Safran.

Lolita Re-Opening Soon in the Gayborhood

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Well there’s finally word on what’s going on with Marcie Turney and Valerie Safran’s Lolita in the Gayborhood. The 10-year-old Mexican restaurant closed for renovations last August, and is expected to re-open this spring “with a fresh look, a new Mexican street food-inspired menu and a full liquor license.” Here’s more on the food, drinks and the new look from a press release:

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2014 James Beard Semifinalists Announced

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The 2014 James Beard Foundation Semifinalists have been announced. Local chefs and restaurateurs and restaurants made it to the semifinals in ten categories including Outstanding Restaurant, Fork, and three nominees for Rising Star Chef of the Year, Chris Kearse, Will, Ben Puchowitz, Cheu Noodle Bar and Ben Nerenhausen, Mistral (Princeton, NJ).

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Little Nonna’s Takes Comfort Food To the Next Level

Spaghetti and meatballs at Little Nonna's | Photo by Jason Varney

Spaghetti and meatballs at Little Nonna’s | Photo by Jason Varney

Trey Popp finds that Marcie Turney has breathed new life into red-gravy Italian at Little Nonna’s.

Just to be safe, though, order the polenta and meatballs to share; Turney packs her cornmeal with enough cream, taleggio, fontina and parmesan to put the most shameless cheese grits to shame. And you’ll want to have room at dinner’s far end for pastry chef Sara May’s spumoni, which ditches the usual neon palette in favor of a moody sundae richly muddled with roasted cherries, chocolate pizzelles and pistachio-olive oil.

Three Stars – Excellent

Restaurant Review: Next-Level Comfort Food at Little Nonna’s [Philadelphia Magazine]
Little Nonna’s [Foobooz]

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