Marc Vetri starred in this weeks Chef’s Night Out series, over on Vice‘s Munchies channel. The 14-minute video begins with Vetri talking about his rise in the restaurant industry–which began with him working under Wolfgang Puck and finds him, now, owning six restaurants in Philadelphia.
This weekend’s frigid winter weather has us all longing to hibernate until warmer days. But don’t let the cold stop you from going out. Just use it as an excuse to indulge in some heartwarming comfort food that will bring feeling back into your fingertips.
Back in December, we did a round-up of the best soups in Center City and now we’re coming back with the best ramen in town–for those of you who want all the comforts of Japanese food thrown into one large, steaming bowl.
Remember that collaboration dinner we told you about a couple weeks ago? The two-night-only, side-by-side Vetri/Morimoto pairing event? Yeah, well it sold out fast and is happening tonight, but for all of you out there who aren’t one of the 32 people total who will get to actually eat this meal, here’s a quick look at how one of the plates turned out.
That is seriously one of the most lovely things I’ve seen in a long time. And while I’m not often envious of people tasting dinners (because god knows I’ve been to more than my share), I am more than a little jealous of the folks sitting down to this table.
Photo courtesy Cashman & Associates [Twitter]
Philadelphia is a town with a lot of collaboration dinners. A lot of event dinners and pairing dinners and tasting dinners and otherwise special nights populated by chefs moving outside their comfort zones to do things other than cooking the regular menu in their own restaurants.
This is, on balance, an excellent thing. The only real downside? The whole tap dance can sometimes seem played out. Like “Oh, another Korean taco night at that French restaurant with the award-winning New American chef? When is someone going to do something new.”
The answer is January 21st and 22nd. Because that’s the night Vetri and Morimoto are getting together for two Japanese-Italian collaboration dinners at their respective restaurants.
A battle between two masters of Japanese flavors, our 29th Open Stove was an epic that, despite physical challenges designed to irritate and confound the competitors, left spectators impressed. William Lindsay, sous chef at Morimoto (assisted by fellow sous Doug Allen), went head to head with Phila Lorn, sous chef at CoZara (assisted by Angelo LaBate, also of CoZara). Each team led off aggressively, plating heavy-duty amuses that left nobody wondering whether or not they were were playing to win…
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]
Masaharu Morimoto isn’t exactly a regular fixture behind the sushi bar at his namesake restaurant in Philly. But according to the OG Iron Chef’s Twitter, he will be in Philadelphia on Sunday, at Morimoto, breaking down a whole fish to make sushi.
So if you’ve always had an urge to watch the master in action (and seriously, that man knows what to do with a knife and a whole tuna), now you know where to be. There are no other details on the event just yet, but I’d suggest that making reservations might be a smart move.
UPDATE: Just got word from the folks at Morimoto and they let me know that the chef will be on hand “to demonstrate breaking down a Hiramsa (wild yellowtail) and a Hirame (Japanese Fluke) while offering guests dining at the sushi bar tastings of seasonal and signature sushi dishes.” Exec chef Benjamin Dayag will also be there, offering tastings of the new spring menu.
There will be two seatings at the sushi bar for the butchery demonstration and spring menu tastings, one at 5:30 and one at 7:30. Reservations can be made by calling the restaurant at 215-413-9070.
Last month we told you how Starr Restaurants was making it easy for diners to donate to support Philadelphia schools. Stephen Starr’s restaurants have also put together some interesting packages that you can bid on online. They include everything from omakase for four at Morimoto to a kids’ pizza party at Pizzeria Stella. There’s even an item that includes dinner for two at all 20 of Starr’s Philadelphia restaurants.
Philadelphia’s Children First Fund [Charitybuzz]
Look out Little Baby’s Ice Cream. Morimoto and his pastry chef Thomas McCarthy have developed a line of unconventional ice cream and sorbet flavors. And they’re going to be for sale at Morimoto in Philadelphia. Flavors will include such unusual flavors such as Popcorn, Miso Honey and Chicken ‘n Waffle.
The ice cream can be purchased to-go at Morimoto’s host stand as well as from servers at the end of a meal. The ice cream launch this Friday and will cost $10 per container.
Philadelphia’s Lone Paparazzo HughE Dillon has been busy tracking the cast of Paranoia as they film around Philadelphia. And Harrison Ford, Gary Oldman, Liam Hemsworth and fiance Miley Cyrus have been spotted eating all around town.
Among the spots: