Philly is no stranger to the square pie. I mean, we literally have an award-winning restaurant in Queen Village called Square Pie that specializes in four-cornered pan pizzas, not to mention a storied history with Sicilian pies and hybrid-types like La Rosa and, more recently, Pizza Gutt. But for a city so comfortable with straight-edges, Roman-style al taglio — the Italian king of rectangular pizza — stays put right under the radar. Few restaurants have tried it out in Philly, and even fewer were successful when they did.
But pizza al taglio is the hot, new thing in the States, what with Roman-style shops opening in big food cities like New York, Chicago, San Fransisco, and Portland. Philly is joining the movement with a new shop called Rione opening at 102 South 21st Street in just a few short months.
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Big changes are imminent on Washington Avenue, and husband and wife team Philip and Gina Narducci are joining in with a new gastropub and pizza shop called Chick’s.
The logo may have been inspired by the Narducci family dog, an Argentine mastiff they like to dress up as a biker for Halloween, but the name comes from Frank “Chickie” Narducci Sr., Philip’s father and a purported capo in the South Philly mafia who had his life cut short in a 1982 mob hit. Read more »
“This area is about to blow up. All of the chefs are going to be coming down here, just like on East Passyunk Avenue,” said Mariano Mattei, chef and owner of Point Breeze Avenue’s freshly-opened pizzeria Mattei Family Pizza.
But how does Mariano plan on coaxing Philly’s hungry diners across Broad Street? With pizza, of course. “Molise-style” pizza.
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Spicy Arrabbiata pizza at Pizzeria Beddia
Yesterday I checked out Harp & Crown for the first time. I thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful space. Drank what felt like an especially timely cocktail titled “Dying Declaration” – bourbon, cinnamon tincture, bitters and tried the Spicy Soppressata pizza. Chef Karen Nicholas is the latest to add a deliberately spicy pizza to her pizza list.
At Harp & Crown, the spicy soppressata pizza is made hotter with sliced shishito peppers. Balance is brought to the dish with a drizzle of honey. It got us thinking about some of our other favorite spicy pizzas in Philadelphia.
So we figured we’d rank our favorite spicy pizzas around town »
We’ve been waiting quite a while for Jose Garces and his team to open 24–the new “Wood Fired Fare” restaurant set beneath his new headquarters at 2401 Walnut Street. First rumored like a year ago, we’ve been walking by and peeking in the windows since February, theorizing about what his team would be doing with the dedicated R&D test kitchen attached to the space, and wondering how he would utilize those big ovens.
So now, finally, we know. Dinner service (and happy hour) starts on Tuesday, November 8th–the official opening. Breakfast, lunch and coffee service will roll out on Saturday, November 12. We’ve got copies of the lunch, dinner and cocktail menus for you to take a look at in the meantime.
Couple other cool things? They’re going to be running a happy hour called “Aperitivo Time” daily from 4:30-6:30. There’ll be drink specials, snacks and complimentary small plates. Dinner service runs until 11pm on the weekends. And there’s going to be a kid’s menu at dinner, too, which, for a certain segment of the audience, is very good news.
And as for that test kitchen? It has actually been up and running for months now, with Garces’s team using it to test out everything from pizza dough to pasta sauces. There was early talk of it being opened (at least occasionally) to the public as a kind of peek behind the curtain as new recipes and designs are tested for concepts throughout the Garces empire, and it looks like that plan might actually happen. According to the press release, Estudio (which is what they’re calling it) will be “introducing public tasting events, cooking classes and other events” to be held in the attached, 20-seat dining room. The space is also available for private events.
Okay, now show me the menus
Brussels Sprout Pizza: an exclusive for SliCE in Fishtown and free on Friday
SliCE Pizza which already has locations in South Philadelphia, Rittenhouse and Washington Township, New Jersey is opening a Fishtown shop on Friday, October 28th. And the shop is opening by giving out free pizza.
Marlo and Jason Dilks who own SliCE as well as East Passyunk’s P’unk Burger will have many of their longtime favorites on the menu but in a twist, the Fishtown location will be dedicated to serving organic, natural and hormone free ingredients. The pizzeria, which specializes in Trenton-style pizza will also offer an expanded selection of vegan and gluten-free options for its Fishtown guests. Look for the other SliCE locations to go organic by next year.
Now about those free slice »
We’ve been watching developments at Cinder for quite a while now. And while we always knew this was going to be Teddy Sourias‘s ode to the cider and sour beers that have been firing the craft brewing scene lately, we didn’t know a lot more than that.
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Brunch at Mulherin’s looks to be a feast
Fishtown’s hot and swanky Wm. Mulherin’s Sons has added weekend brunch. The restaurant with Chris Painter in the kitchen is rolling out several interesting dishes for its brunch including:
- Eggs on a Volcano (Mulherin’s take on the Shakshuka)
- Donut Sandwich -fried ham, fontina and egg
- Steak and Eggs For the Table – 24-ounce porterhouse with potatoes and choice of eggs
- Speck & Egg Pizza – caramelized onion, egg, speck, garlic cream
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Pizzeria Vetri‘s “Pizza Jawn” series is a quarterly event where the Vetri team buddies up with a chef outside the family to collaborate on a limited edition pizza. This time around, the chef they’re bringing in is Yehuda Sichel (from Abe Fisher and elsewhere) and from October 17th to the 23rd, Pizzeria Vetri will be offering his Pork Belly Reuben Pizza. The Pork Belly Reuben pie will be available at Pizzeria Vetri’s Chancellor Street and Callowhill Street locations.
Oh, and in other news? Today is the grand opening of Pizzeria Vetri at the KOP Mall. It’s their new Square Pie model (which we told you all about a couple days ago), so if you’re in the mood for something square tonight, you’re in luck.
Pizzeria Vetri [Official]
&pizza comes to Philadelphia
The popular and well liked (4.5 stars on Yelp) Washington D.C. pizza chain, &pizza lands in Philadelphia. The first area location and 17th for the chain is opening Thursday, October 13th at 1430 Walnut Street (on 15th Street under the Cheesecake Factory).
The quick-serve pizza spot (pronounced “and pizza”) will host a celebration in honor its first location outside of Washington D.C. with free pizza and tattoos.
That’s right– &pizza is offering tattoos of their logo, the ampersand, on their opening day. The first five guests to request this tattoo will receive it for free, along with free pizza for a full year. If you aren’t sure permanent ink for a year of free pizza is for you, you can still get a free pie if you are one of the first 215 guests to arrive–the number 215 being a nod to Philadelphia’s area code.
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