Deep Fried and Overstuffed: Puyero Reviewed

When you’re staring down the barrel of a pabellón arepa stuffed full of braised beef, black beans, and plantains like caramel, nothing else matters. You’re zoned in like you’re defusing a bomb because, from the looks of it, it’s all about to burst—the seams of the cornmeal bun holding it together, yes, but barely. And that’s how it should be. That’s how arepas often come: comically overstuffed.

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The Best Cafes (and Restaurants) to Bring Your Laptop and Eat an Actual Meal

The Cusco Sandwich at Plenty Cafe

The Cusco Sandwich at Plenty Cafe

Maybe you’re a freelancer with a few hours between meetings downtown and you want to keep up the productivity. Or there’s construction in your office building and you can’t get anything done with power tools grinding away upstairs. Or you work from home but you’ve reached the point at which you’ll freak out if you don’t leave the house today.

You need a spot to get work done — school, freelance, creative, or just catching up on email. You also need to eat, and as tasty as the croissants and cookies at most coffee shops are, they’re not exactly brain food.

We’ve rounded up some of Philly’s favorite spots to camp out for a few hours (or more), eat a real breakfast or lunch, crush your task list. For our purposes, we’ve stuck with Center City and adjacent neighborhoods; we also made free wi-fi for customers and an actual food menu (however brief) a requirement.

And for when the workday spans meals, we’ve compiled a few of our favorite trendy spots where you might spend a working lunch (and maybe happy hour afterwards) while chowing down on a more substantial, chef-driven menu.

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Eat Korean Food at Serpico and Help a Philly Restaurant Worker Fight Cancer

Serpico_LoRes044.jpg Mike Persico

As tragic as it is to be diagnosed with cancer, it’s good to know you have an entire industry in your corner ready to support you in any way that it can. Philly’s Theresa Lazzari — a back-of-house pro most recently turning out pastas at Southwark and Ambra — recently had that happen to her.

And while she’s out there kicking cancer’s butt, some Queen Village restaurants are stepping up to help her out.

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Trinity Tuesday: Revised and Extended in Bella Vista for $385K

602 Coulter St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

602 Clymer St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach

C-SPAN fans — both of you — are familiar with the phrase “revise and extend my remarks,” which means that a U.S. Representative’s three-minute speech will run 100 pages in the Congressional Record.

This house on Bella Vista’s eastern edge isn’t that much more roomy than it was before it got a total renovation in 2011, but it is significantly revised. The makeover restored the original trinity steps between the first and second floors but otherwise turned this into a totally modern home.

The first floor features a tile-floored living room, an up-to-date eat-in kitchen, and a powder room. There’s a great wood-decked rear patio out back. Read more »

Trinity Tuesday: A Regal Retreat in Queen Village for $229.9K

228 Catharine St. #3, Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND images via Zillow

228 Catharine St. #3, Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND images via Zillow

This week’s featured trinity is one of those rarities: An affordable home in a gated community.

Now, don’t get ahead of yourself: your friends who come to visit you in this Queen Village charmer won’t be given the eagle eye and asked to present ID by a guy sitting in a guard house. But this home does sit on a private courtyard tucked behind two rowhomes on Catharine Street, sealed off by a gate from the outside world.

Which makes it a perfect choice for an individual or couple who want to have their urban vitality and eat their suburban tranquility too. Read more »

Eat This Now: Baked-to-Order Madeleines at Hungry Pigeon

Photo by Scott Charles Schroeder III

Photo by Scott Charles Schroeder III

Look for the nipple. That’s the secret to a great madeleine — the nipple, or téton as the French would say. It’s the bump on the backside of the shell-shaped dessert native to the town of Commercy in the Lorraine region; the bigger the nipple, the fluffier the cake.

Hungry Pigeon’s madeleines? Well, you’ll see.

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Eat This Now: Royal Sushi and Izakaya’s “Industry” Chirashi

industry_chirashi

You know what’s cool about Royal Sushi and Izakaya? Like we told you last week, pretty much everything, from the shumai to the sushi to the space robots. But when a restaurant like this surprise-opens on you (mind you, nearly six years after it was first announced), the smaller details reveal themselves over time, on the fly, something new for every visit.

Like, say, Royal chef Jesse Ito’s off-the-menu “industry” chirashi.

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Trinity Tuesday: A Gorgeous Mosaic in Queen Village for $275K

329 Kater St. Unit B, Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND images via RE/MAX Main Line

329 Kater St. Unit B, Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND images via RE/MAX Main Line

They say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. Yet, with one look upon this trinity’s gated entryway, adorned with beautiful mosaics designed by Isaiah Zagar in the 1960s, you will desire to know more about what’s inside.

“Small but mighty” feels like the only appropriate way to describe this tiny trinity located in Queen Village. At 769 square feet, it’s definitely not for everyone. However, if you are looking for the convenience of living in the heart of the city – and can handle doing so modestly – this home might be exactly what you’re looking for. Read more »

Dinner At The Fish Riot: Royal Sushi And Izakaya Reviewed

royal-izakaya-chirashizushi-940

There are restaurants you go to because you’re hungry, and restaurants you go to because they’re cool. There are restaurant you go to because they’re close—the old soldiers of your particular block, with rooms as comfortable as faded blue jeans and a bartender who knows your name. And then there are restaurants you go to because they make you feel better about your neighborhood, your city or yourself. That’s what Royal Sushi and Izakaya is for me.

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