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Three types of empanada are now on the menu at Restaurant M. CE Phood picks its favorite. [CE Phood]

Philly Phoodie likes everything at West Philadelphia’s Vietnam Cafe, from the Flaming Volcano cocktail to the Dyson hand dryer. [Philly Phoodie]

Frugal Foodist spots an everyday deal at S&H Kebab House. Dinner for $17 per person. [Frugal Foodist]

Bridges, burgers & beer hits up Distrito for brunch and has all the photographic evidence to prove you made a mistake not heading to Jose Garces’ Univeristy City Mexican restaurant this past weekend. [bridges, burgers & beer]

Philly Phoodie eats 30 dumplings during Kong’s Dumpling Thursday where each dumpling is only 50¢. [Philly Phoodie]

Table Matters goes upscale for vegan at Horizons. [Table Matters]

Don’t Read This Hungry

Felicia D’Ambrosio urges everyone to eat Pub & Kitchen’s spicy pulled pork. [Meal Ticket]

It’s a video lunch at Irie Caribbean Grill, on the OTHER side of Passyunk. [Salt Pepper Ketchup]

Amada’s Catalan Express lunch fits the bill, whatever the weather. [BROG]

Adding bbq spice to a biscuit? Bebe’s Barbecue does it and it works! Oh and of course Mac & Cheese has some mac-and-cheese.  [Mac & Cheese]

S& H Kebab House has outdoor seating and a lunch that satisfies for under $10. [CE Phood]

Doner Party

S&H Kebab House

13 years in the making, S&H Kebab House is finally a reality and according to Adam Erace, the restaurant is pushing out some of the best kebabs around.

[T]he kebabs, made with chicken or leg of lamb ground in-house, skewered on metal spits and cooked over open charcoals that imbue each stick with a smoky, almost sensual undertone. Turkish pepper paste reminiscent of Tunisian harissa stoked a fire in the long, sausage-shaped Adana kebabs, while the classic, familiar shish kebabs bring cubed lamb and chicken that had been marinating for days in yogurt, onion juice and tomato paste.

For both the shish and the doner kebabs, Yuksel starts with whole legs of lamb butchered, trimmed and trussed in the S&H kitchen, and you can taste the time and effort in each tender, succulent bite.

Serendipity Brings Kebabs to South Philly [Philadelphia Weekly]
S&H Kebab House [Official Site]

S&H For Kebab Lunch

Craig LaBan is all about the iskender kebab special at S&H Kebab House, just off of South Street.

This Turkish grill from owners Sal Kucuk (he’s the “S”) and chef Hussein Yuksel (he’s the “H”) is all about spot-on, homemade Ottoman classics, and this iskender kebab is one of my favorites. Made from well-onioned ground lamb and roasted on a gyro spit layered with veal, the meat comes sliced over a platter of butter-crisped pita chips beneath lively tomato sauce and a rich dollop of strained homemade yogurt. It’s a true taste of Istanbul street food and is a particularly hearty deal at lunch for $7.95 with a side of Turkish red lentil soup.

Good Taste [Philadelphia Inquirer]

S&H Kebabs

s_and_h_kebab_house

David Snyder checks out S&H Kebab House on Passyunk Avenue of off South Street and leaves smiling.

 

In my first visit, I had doubts as to whether the food could live up to Kucuk’s showmanship. Baba ghanoush had an unpleasant gelatinous texture; a soupy yogurt sauce drowned manti (Turkish dumplings).

But the generous kebab sampler I had on my second trip — it fed four of us for just $21.95 — made up for it. Lamb and chicken adana (minced meat molded onto skewers) delivered respectable heat. Gyro-like döner, lamb layered with veal, was tasty; both lamb cubes and meatballs were moist and flavorful. Other dishes satisfied, too — I enjoyed the light, dill-spiked Turkish feta wrapped inside fried yufka (Turkish phyllo dough). Although I wished it had more ground lamb, it’s hard to go wrong when the eggplant-based moussaka’s topped with a thick, bubbling layer of kasar (Turkish mozzarella).

On the House [City Paper]
S&H Kebab House [Official Site]

Quick Bites

S & H Kebab House will open with complimentary dinner for everyone on Tuesday, February 10th. [Meal Ticket]

Mantra is dropping the pan-Asian pub theme and is being reborn as Bar Amalfi, an Italian take. [The Insider]

Wit or Witout, witout question a great name for a steak shop. It’s open at Frankford and Cottman for all you steak, cheesesteak, cheesesteak hoagie, pizza steak needs. [Feeding Frenzy, City Paper]

Strongbox is aiming to replace Monkey Bar in late February. Brett Perloff’s spot has a Facebook page already and we’re all very excited to hear about the first injury caused by the ladder only accesible DJ booth. [Meal Ticket]

The attractive Cresheim Cottage Cafe in Mt. Airy has closed. Germantown Ave construction and the economy are to blame. [Table Talk, Philadelphia Inquirer]

Quick Bites

Marc Vetri has a deal on the table for a new trattoria that would go in the Kimpton Hotel coming to 17th and Arch but “talks have been dragging.” [Inqlings, Philadelphia Inquirer]

R. Evan Turney will be rolling out the beginning of VargaBar’s menu at Azul Cantina for Restaurant Week. All the main courses offered that week will be Turney’s creations. [The Insider]

The Headhouse Square Kildare’s wasn’t the only property recently shed by Dave Magrogan. The former Grady David’s in Honey Brook is now Bistro on 10. The business was purchased by Lewis Frame Jr. who owns the Waynesbrook Inn where Grady David’s was located. [Pottstown Mercury]

Kite & Key gets a chef with Georges Perrier experience. Justin Hoke comes after time at Table 31 and Le Bec-Fin. He’ll keep the menu “simple and fun.” [The Insider]

Weird synergies between Ridge and Passyunk Avenues. First there was the Adobe Cafe and in February S & H Kebab House will take over the former Overtures. The S in S & H is Sal Kucuk who owns the Borough’s New Ridge Diner. [Meal Ticket]

The Rouge burger is no stranger to fame or fortune, on February 19th the burger will among the contenders at the Amstel Light Burger Bash, hosted by Rachel Ray, at the South Beach Wine and Food Festival.

Alison at Blue Bell will be reopening in the first week of February. The menu will reflect Chef Anthony Bonett’s Italian heritage and on Mediterranean fare. Amonght the highlights, Spanish octopus, pork chop Milanese, shellfish risotto, rock shrimp with potato and goat cheese ravioli  and the return of brussel sprouts!

It’s like 9th and Passyunk getting another steak place. Montgomery Ave in Narberth is getting another deli. Mel Glickstein who has run Mel’s Italian in Bala is looking to open Benny’s come April. [Inqlings, Philadelphia Inquirer]

Quick Bites

Yesterday, The Insider posted its 2009 restaurant forecast with lots of tasty morsels from big to small. Among the new to us, S & H Kebab House will be a Turkish kabob BYOB at the former Overtures. VargaBar is the name for the Valanni backed redo of Azul. Saute and Slate are aiming to be open by the end of the month and Girasole, is not dead after all. [The Insider]

As you may have noticed in the ad to the left, John Mims, formerly of Carmine’s and Les Bons Temps is going to be opening Mims in Wayne, where he’ll be serving contemporary New Orleans comfort food.

Neil Stein to South Street? Could it be? [Ice Pack, City Paper]

Table Talk higlights the new MangoMoon in Manayunk. It’s “warm but dramatic,” featuring Thai small plates and no Pad Thai! [Table Talk, Philadelphia Inquirer]

Pasqual Cancelliere, who ran Butcher’s Cafe with his father before selling the spot, is coming back to 9th Street with 943 , a Argentine and Italian themed restaurant. [Meal Ticket]

Pico de Gallo is expanding but not going far. The 15th and South Mexican is opening across the street in a larger space and will be turning the existing Pico into a cheaper takeout and delivery spot. [The Insider]

We do love ourselves some crêpes, so we’re ready to check out the new Crêpe Maker in 30th Street Station. [Meal Ticket]