Serrano in Old City may have served its last meal on June 28th, but starting tonight there will still be dishes coming out of the kitchen. Chef Meghan Carnevale will be running the show (and her first kitchen) this summer as Ranch Road Taco Shop, Carnevale’s beloved taco truck, hosts a midsummer pop up at the now-closed-for-renovations Serrano.
Adam Erace notes that you can’t have a vibrant neighborhood in 2014 without a good Mexican spot. And with the addition of Cafe Ynez at 2025 Washington Avenue on the Graduate Hospital/Point Breeze border, both neighborhoods can boast they have their Mexican restaurant.
Erace’s only complaint, he wants more. “More food, more hours. Fortunately, both are in the works later this summer.”
A new Mexican place comes to GradHo and Point Breeze [Foobooz]
Cafe Ynez [Foobooz]
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.
Italian Market [Philadelphia Magazine]
Chef Jose Garces is a busy man with two new restaurant openings.
Tomorrow, Tuesday, July 8, the newest iteration of his Distrito brand opens at the Moorestown Mall. Chef Garces brings the flavor of Mexico City to New Jersey with a full bar of 100+ tequilas and shareable plates, good for families and large parties. And drunks. Lots and lots of drunks. You’re welcome, New Jersey.
It would be worth visiting Joe Gunn, Casey Parker and Adan Trinidad’s sequel to Jose Pistola’s purely to read the beer menu. The Pabst Blue Ribbon is described as “Frank Booth’s favorite. F’ Heineken.” The Allagash White is a “way worse dancer than Allagash Black.” It’s a fun list to read, and indicative of the time you can have at Sancho Pistola’s even if you skip the beer list entirely and settle in with a margarita or smoked piña colada. But Sancho’s isn’t just a place to drink; Trinidad is putting out serious food. The tacos that make up half the menu are a good place to start; they’re broken up by land and sea. On land, the spicy pork tacos are on point; on the sea side, you can’t go wrong with tuna — or, expand your taco horizons with the scallop version. Trinidad is at his best with sea creatures, and nowhere more so than the whole fish. Wash it down with a Berber stout, which, according to the beer menu, is a “dark gift from Mexico, like Adan.”
Sancho Pistola’s [Foobooz]
Café Ynez is bringing the heat this summer with a few flavorful and authentic Mexico City additions to the menu. One of which includes a tostada with your choice of chicken, pork or steak on a fried corn tortilla finished off with refried beans, grilled onions, lettuce, pico de gallo, sour cream and queso fresco ($5).
Be sure to keep an eye out for the daily specials, like the vegetarian based tomato gazpacho topped with lump crabmeat or a quesadilla. And for the vegetarians? Cafe Ynez now offers a vegetarian enchilada with a fried egg, guacamole, queso fresco, red onion, sour cream and a red guajillo sauce in a corn tortilla.
Whether you’re chomping down on a tostada, slurping up gazpacho, or getting your veggies, just don’t forget to BYO. As long as you provide the tequila or wine, Café Ynez will do the rest with their rotating selection of margaritas or sangrias in a carafe ($8.50). With flavors ranging from Bloody Mary to Watermelon Mint, your hardest decision of the day may be which one (or how many) to get.
Café Ynez [Foobooz]
“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.
Jamie at Midtown Lunch tips us off to a Tuesday deal being offered by Du Jour Market at 20th and Market Streets. The tacos are normally $11 but on Tuesdays they drop to $6.99. Chicken, beef and tilapia are all offered for the special price. Jamie preferred the fish and the shady outdoor seating.
Sancho Pistola’s Taco Exchange brings visiting chefs to the Fishtown bar for some very interesting collaborations. Tomorrow, Wednesday, May 21st, two of Morimoto’s chefs are coming to Fishtown to make hamachi tacos.
Morimoto chef de cuisine Benjamin Dayag and sous chef William Lindsay will be teaming up with Sancho Pistola’s Adan Trinidad to offer a chilled taco dish they created especially for the evening.
Hamachi, Akamiso-Konbu Vinaigrette, Pickled Tomatillo, Wasabi Crème Fraiche and Puffed Rice on a Daikon Taco
The tacos will be sold by the pair for $13. The tacos will be available after 9 p.m.
Sancho Pistola’s [Foobooz]
This Wednesday, May 14th, La Calaca Feliz in Fairmount will be hosting its next whole animal barbecue. It will be a whole lamb being cooked in the back courtyard in La Calaca’ Caja China.
The barbecue is $29 per person and includes Lima beans, esquites (Mexican street corn) salsa verde and corn tortillas.