Where To Eat This Weekend: Kicking Off the Season at Morgan’s Pier

Morgan's Pier is open for the season

Morgan’s Pier is open for the season

Okay, so there is a lot to do this weekend. With spring here, the sun coming out and people finally shaking off the last of their winter blues, it seems like everybody has some sort of event, collaboration or special menu just waiting for you — everything from oysters, beer and pies to curry rice and a total tiki takeover.

So let’s just get right to it, shall we?

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About Last Night: The Oyster And The Taco

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We have done a LOT of Open Stove nights at COOK. The official count is 46, but that number seems low to me. But even if we accept that figure, that means four years of Open Stove. 184 cooks in our Thunderdome. 92 winners and 92 losers and 368 courses and countless numbers of shots.

In all that time, we have had some great dishes. We have had some terrible dishes, too, but most of them have been better than they had any right to be, considering we were making the chefs work with Swedish Fish, Fruity Pebbles, with their hands tied behind their backs, or blindfolded. We have screwed with our contestants mercilessly because I firmly believe that chefs possess some of the greatest, most creative minds on earth, but that their unique version of greatness and creativity is only brought out under stress. The greater the stress, the greater the genius. And these past four years of Open Stove have been like our own private laboratory in which we prove that every month.

Last night’s contest? In a way, it was no different than 45 that have come before. Four rounds, multiple courses, tricks, booze, shenanigans–it had all the requisite pieces. In one way, it was very different: We had bartenders competing instead of chefs. And in one way, it was the most surprising ever because last night’s Open Stove came about as close as I think we’re ever going to get to the perfect contest.

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Five Family-Style Meals to Try in Philly Restaurants Now

Photograph by Jillian Guyette

The Trough at Butcher Bar | Photograph by Jillian Guyette

The way we eat today — mixing and matching and plate-sharing — can make ordering when you’re out with a large group a challenge. Which is why restaurants are now creating over-the-top family-style meals where the only thing you have to say is, “We’ll take that.”  Read more »

Double Lobsters And Crab Picking: Oyster House is Here For Your Summer Seafood Needs

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What’s better than one lobster? Two lobsters, especially when, together, they’ll run you less than $30.

Oyster House has brought back their Twin Lobster Dinners for the fifth year in a row. Every Wednesday night until August 31st, you can get two whole one-pound Maine lobsters with drawn butter and corn on the side, for just $28.

But wait, there’s more…

Dinners for You and All Your Friends: Feasts Worth Planning Ahead For

The Dump Dinner at Oyster House

The Dump Dinner at Oyster House

Sure it’s fun to order just what you want off of a restaurant’s menu but sometimes the camaraderie of a shared feast is what you’re really hungering for. That’s when a large format meal at one of Philadelphia’s best restaurants is what you have in mind. So gather up some friends and make reservations for these family-style dinners.

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Shuck Fest 2016 Is Coming

2016 shuck fest 400What was once a simple shucking contest and excuse to suck down a couple dozen oysters on a spring afternoon has, this year, become a full-bore indoor oyster carnival with this year’s Shuck Fest at Oyster House.

Scheduled for this Sunday, from noon to 4pm, Oyster House will host everything from the traditional shucking competition to oyster tutorials, oyster tastings with local growers, wine and beer pairings, shell crafts and games for the kids, photo booths and more.

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New Spring Cocktails at Oyster House

Photo by Jason Varney

Photo by Jason Varney

On a recent unseasonably warm March afternoon, I stopped in to Sansom Street’s Oyster House to try out several of the restaurant’s new cocktails. Head bartender/bar manager Lindsey Krueger, a Franklin Mortgage and Village Whiskey vet has been at Oyster House for four years and has built up quite the selection of gins behind the bar, a collection that is put to good use in the latest Oyster House cocktail list.

Bartender Colin O’Neill, himself a Franklin Mortgage alum mixed up the cocktails as I sampled the day’s oysters, house-cured gravalax and decided to wear the delicious barbecue oysters.

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Final Days for Snockey’s Oyster and Crab House

snockey's
It is the last weekend for Snockey’s Oyster and Crab House. The Philadelphia institution is closing after 103 years. Located at 1020 South 2nd Street for the past 40 years, the restaurant’s closing further shuts the door on the tradition of the Philadelphia oyster house.

Third generation owners, Ken and Skip Snock are both in their 60s and looking to step away from the business. The property has been for sale since late 2014.

In the 1870s, Philadelphians consumed 12 oysters a week and some 2,419 Philadelphia hotels, oyster houses, restaurants and saloons served oysters. And that’s not counting the roving peddlers and curbside stands. By the late 1950s, 95% of the Delaware Bay’s oysters had been wiped out by disease. With the dropoff in local oysters, oyster houses also faced extinction.

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Clambakes, Crab Boils and More

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Varga Bar is hosting a three-day crab boil.

If you’re a fan of clambakes, crab boils and bargain oysters, now through Labor Day is your time to strike.

Tonight is Oyster House’s last Twin Lobster Dinner of the summer. That’s two one-pound Maine lobsters, corn and drawn butter for just $28.

On Thursday, August 27th, Brick and Mortar is hosting a family style lobster and clam bake. The feast is $55 per person in advance, $65 in person. There are two seatings (6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.) and beer from Nantucket’s Cisco Brewery will be included.

But there’s more »

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