Philly’s Gourmet Fall: Great Food Events

We’ve rounded up a slew of fall food and drink events in and around Philly that are worth your time and money. — Jessie Holeva

Taste Local, Win Tickets (!)
The Headhouse Farmers’ Market rules, and now you can get a deeper appreciation of some of its offerings at Taste Local Classes on Thursday, October 15th, at 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. at the Headhouse Shambles (we didn’t know it was called that either) at 2nd and Lombard. A dozen local wine, cheese, and chocolate producers will be on hand offering generous samples and talking about their passion. (We’d want to know the secret behind chef-loved Shellbark’s great goat cheese, Chaddsford’s vinos and Betty’s Tasty Buttons.) Restaurant Club members can email their name to before noon on Thursday (October 8th) for a chance to win a pair of tickets. Winners will be chosen at random and contacted by email. Don’t cry if you don’t win — the regular ticket price is an affordable $40. More details at

Uncorking the Past: Ancient Ales, Wines, and Extreme Beverages
The Penn Museum is hosting Patrick McGovern, an authority on ancient fermented beverages and author of Uncorking the Past, and Dogfish Head founder Sam Caligione on Thursday, October 8th. The pair will talk about how ancient ales and extreme beverages are discovered and brought back to life — and they’ll bring samples of re-created ancient ales by Dogfish Head Brewery Dock Street Brewery and Williams Brothers Brewing Company to show you what they mean. (There will be interesting wines too.) $45 for members, $60 for nonmembers; guests must be 21 years old. More info and tickets at

Brown Betty’s Birthday = Free Cupcakes for You
The oh-so-yummy Brown Betty Petite is celebrating its first birthday on Friday, October 9th, and you get the present. Starting at noon, everyone who stops by gets a free cupcake (until they run out). And you get your pick from red velvet, chocolate, vanilla, or strawberry. 269 South 20th Street, between Spruce and Manning streets.

Bella Sera Café Opening
Fishtown continues to stake its culinary claim with the opening of Bella Sera Café on October 10th. This coffee house will serve up 100 percent organic coffees and teas as well as vegan pastries. Opening day specials, samples, and raffles will abound. 2146 East Susquehanna Avenue;

Philly Neighborhood Food Week
Center City Restaurant Week may have ended, but other neighborhoods are getting in on the action. From October 11th through the 18th, area neighborhoods are having their own food week, in which more than 32 restaurants (some of our favorites, too) are offering three- and four-course meals for $20 or $30 a person. Participating ‘hoods include Chestnut Hill, East Passyunk, Northern Liberties, Penn’s Landing, South Street, and Manayunk. See restaurants and menus at

The Suburban Home Show
This show might have cool home and hostess products, but we’ll be checking it out because of the celeb chefs on hand. Sample gourmet foods, beverages, and wines, and watch cooking demos from Top Chef fave Fabio Vivianti, Food Network stars Ingrid Hoffmann and Robert Irvine, and Emmy Award-winning Philly girl Christina Pirello. It’s on October 16th, 17th. and 18th at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center. Check out pricing and times at

South Jersey Restaurant Week
The group of South Jersey restaurateurs who call themselves the SJ Hot Chefs are back for their biannual restaurant week from Sunday, October 18th, through Friday, October 23rd. This year, they’ve made the four-course, $35 deal even sweeter: Some restaurants will have $25 menus, and every guest gets a $10 gift certificate they can use on their next visit to any restaurant in the SJ Hot Chefs network. For restaurants and menus, go to

Fleming’s Steakhouse Specials
Fleming’s (which has area locations in Radnor and Marlton) is unrolling some cool initiatives this fall. First up, the new “5 for $6 ’til 7” happy hours, where five wines, five cocktails, and five full-size appetizers will be offered for $6 until 7 p.m. nightly. Next, they are unveiling a collection of 100 upscale wines by the glass, which features 30 wines at $10 or less a glass. But this steakhouse isn’t all about wine: There’s a new burger menu, which has five burgers made from things like filet mignon, tuna, crab. and prime meat.