The Cheat Sheet: Russet

The local ingredients shine at this Rittenhouse gem. Our dietician found plenty to love.

Fresh baby vegetables in Russet's kitchen

Fresh baby veggies are the hallmark of a healthy meal. // Photo courtesy of Russet

I’ll admit, I’ve avoided spotlighting several of the quaint and fabulous BYOBs this city has to offer, as the ever changing menus seem problematic if I’m to offer you a list of healthy items to choose from. But after a recent dinner at Russet that was to inspired not to share, I figured I would diverge from the usual Cheat Sheet format and just offer some advice on dining here.

First of all, you can’t get much healthier then really great, locally sourced ingredients—so locally sourced, in fact, that the menu changes daily. Yes, daily. After spending a good amount of time speaking with chef/owner Andrew Wood, I realized Russet was an easy place to dine in a healthful way. Sure, I can’t offer you exact menu items, but I can offer these words of advice.

>> Try the pasta! It’s perfectly portioned for sharing as a starter or second course.

>> Opt for fish as your main dish, and think about sharing: The portions for the second course are plenty large. Wood often poaches or steams the fish to spotlight the freshness. (Tip: You can ask for it to be prepared this way if it’s not offered on the menu.)

>> The local, seasonal vegetables are abundant, and the flavors speak for themselves. Feel free to ask for light oil (our dishes did seem a bit laden), but know that the ingredients will be bright with hints of citrus, allowing the flavors of their local freshness to shine.

>> For dessert, I recommend sharing the sorbet. Light, refreshing and the perfect palate-cleanser for the end of the meal. We had lemon verbena. Although we were getting full, we kept getting sucked back in with each sweet-yet-slightly-savory bite.


Have a restaurant you’d like us to Cheat Sheet? Let us know in the comments!

Restaurant menus are reviewed by Phillies dietitian and owner of Healthy Bites Katie Cavuto Boyle. In most cases, the individual restaurants were contacted for specific ingredient and recipe information. Note: Many restaurants have seasonal menus and some items may not be available.

>> See Cheat Sheets for other Philly restaurants here. And for Katie’s healthy dining-out tips, go here.