Nothing wrong with a table for one at Vetri
Sure, dates and dinners with friends are nice, but sometimes you just want to grab a meal all by yourself. Maybe you’re too busy to make plans, or you just need some alone time. Or maybe you just want to order all the appetizers on the menu and not have to share them. Whatever your reason for dining alone, we’ve got the six best places in Philly to treat yourself.
So, you know, happy Valentine’s Day…
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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.
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From left, Laurel chefs Kyle McCormick, Edmund Konrad, Nick Elmi, and Paul Becker.
| Photo by Michael Persico
Three months. That’s about how long it takes us to eat at every important restaurant in the city. And then eat there again. And, sometimes, again.
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If you slept in today, you already missed this. I’m talking about it now just because I think it was kind of awesome–and proof of how much social media has affected the way restaurants do business these days.
Early this morning, Marc Vetri went on the Twitters and made an announcement:
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We’ve talked before about the classes Marc Vetri and his team hold upstairs in the newly remodeled test kitchen-slash-classroom space above his eponymous restaurant. It’s the kind of place where you have the opportunity to get up close and personal with your favorite members of Team Vetri, eat a bunch of awesome food and, as a bonus, learn how to make some delicious pasta (or chocolate, or gnocchi, or whatever) in the process.
What we didn’t know was just how up close and cozy the classes here get. As shown in the video below, this isn’t just about having Marc Vetri teach you how to make dinner, this is actually making dinner with Marc Vetri.
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Team Vetri just released their schedule of September cooking classes at Osteria and in the new upstairs room at Vetri. So if you’ve ever wanted to have Marc Vetri show you how to make pasta (or have him and his dad Sal teach you the secrets of a proper Sunday supper), you should probably get over to the ticketing site and make your reservations now.
And hey, Vetri isn’t the only one playing teacher in September. Jeff Michaud is doing classes on Pizza and Italian bar snacks. Brad Daniels is hand-rolling pasta. Adam Leonti is making risotto. Ian Brendle is coming in to do an end-of-summer dinner. Brad Spence is doing a class on “cucina casalinga” (housewife cuisine and Italian soul food, more or less). And on Tuesday, September 16, 10 lucky folks will get to be among the first to try the food from Lo Spiedo when chef Scott Calhoun crops by to do some menu testing. That one should be awesome.
September Cooking Classes at Vetri and Osteria [Official]
Set an alarm, drop your calls, and mark your calendar because today at 1 p.m., tickets go on sale for the next Cage Match Dinner Battle at Alla Spina. And with only 26 spots open, attendees will be competing for spots as much as the chefs will be for the winning title.
The tasty matchup will happen Wednesday, July 16 between Michael Solomonov & Co. from Zahav and Marc Vetri & Co. from Vetri. Fun fact: Solomonov used to work under Vetri. Like every competition though, there can only be one winner. Will it be student or teacher? Insert dramatic sound effect here.
The ticket is $95 per person and a portion of the proceeds will go to Rooster Soup Company, a kickstarter put together by Federal Donuts and Broad Street Ministry.
To reserve your spot, call 215-600-0017.
Alla Spina [Foobooz]
Rooster Soup Company [Foobooz]
New upstairs dining room at Vetri.
Marc Vetri has recently completed his upstairs expansion at his eponymous Vetri. The new upstairs dining room and test kitchen is now available for private events, cooking classes and more. Two July cooking classes have already sold out but tickets remain to three summer dinners featuring collaborations, farmer dinners and a special two nights with Italian wine.
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City Paper’s Caroline Russock gets the details on what Marc Vetri and chef de cuisine Adam Leonti have planned for the upstairs expansion of Vetri. The open kitchen with communal table will seat up to sixteen people. But that’s only the beginning of the story. Check out what Leonti and farmer Ian Brendle of Green Meadow Farm in Lancaster County have in store.
A Pennsylvania-centric tasting menu comes the soon-to-open upstairs annex of Vetri [City Paper]