Friday, June 8, 2007

Eggs Benedict

Farofa likes Eggs Benedict. That is probably the understatement of the year, actually. It might be more accurate to say that Farofa tracks Eggs Benedict across the city with the intensity of a heat-seeking missile. Below is a sampling of Eggs Benedict dishes that she has consumed in Philly and a couple of ringers from DC & Maui respectively. For any of you who are similarly consumed with dreams of Eggs Benedict heaven try your hand at matching the following Eggs Benedict with the restaurants from which they came (no cheating by looking at flickr!):

1. the continental
2. creperie beau monde
3. jones
4. marathon on the square
5. more than just ice cream
6. morning glory
7. spices cafe
8. silver diner

a. Avocado Eggs Benedict b. Eggs Benedict Original Recipe

c. Crabcake Eggs Benedict d. Eggs Benedict with Ham

e. Poached Eggs with Bearnaise f. Spanish Eggs Benedict

g. Plain Eggs Benedict h.IMG_1064

Give up? The answers are
1d, 2e, 3h, 4b, 5a, 6f, 7g (maui), 8c (DC)

And yet - none of the pictured Eggs Benedict have achieved what Farofa considers to be the Platonic ideal of the dish, and some have even been bad! Quel horror! Can anyone out there help us find the best Eggs Benedict in Philadelphia?

P.S. We may be doing the same with guacamole in a soon-to-come episode if this is successful.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Pre-moving reminiscing (6/1/07)

So it turns out that when, as a couple, you are simultaneously graduating from medical school, moving to a new city, buying your first home, angling for a promotion, starting medical residency and dealing with family health emergencies, it tends to make you neglect certain other things in your life. Things like blogs. But now that big moving day is almost upon us - it's time to reflect on the things we will miss about South Philly and Pittsburgh respectively, although we can't wait to explore all that NoLib & Fishtown have to offer. Part I: Pittsburgh, to be followed shortly by Part II: South Philly.


Farofa will miss Chaya ( the most. We went here for the last (snif!) time right prior to FrenchFries' graduation and ordered everything we could fit on the table, as is apparent in the photos.
Last meal at Chaya
The fish here is always fresh and luscious, the service is wonderful, the ambiance is totally charming, as befits its status as a family run Squirrel Hill institution. The fact that it is closed on Sundays (which for some reason seems to be FrenchFries' default sushi-craving day) and that waits can sometimes be a little longer than is typical in the 'burgh (think 20 minutes, not the 2 hour Philly 'long waits') are minor annoyances at worst. One tip is to
talk to the chef Yasu-San in advance if you want anything special. Far and away the worst thing about moving to Philadelphia is the fact that neither Farofa nor French Fries has yet found a sushi place in Philly that hits the sweet spot of consistently delicious fresh fish, affordable pricing, sweet ambiance and perfect service, the way that Chaya always did and are starting to fear that they never will. Adieu sweet Chaya - you will be missed.
Chaya Sashimi Gluttony

The Quiet Storm
FrenchFries will definitely miss Chaya as well, but her biggest regret about moving away from Pittsburgh is no longer being able to go to the Quiet Storm ( at any hour of the day that she pleased and get anything off the menu, knowing that it will be incredible, super-filling and vegetarian or vegan without any hassle as well as not taking a big bite out of her wallet. FrenchFries actually has nearly no photos of the food at the Quiet Storm, mainly because it tends to be mostly inside by the time it occurs to anyone to pull out a camera. If you are lucky enough to get to go there, I reccomend ordering any (or all!) of the following: Ginger lemonade (sweet & tart lemonade with gingerrific syrup)/Ginger-lemon shake (lemon sorbet, soy milk & the same fantastic ginger syrup), Quiet Storm 'Home Fries' (a HUGE pile of mashed red-skin potatoes covered with tender scrambled eggs, soy sausage, sweeeet carmalized onions, cheddar and super-tangy aioli - my personal favorite), the big-as-yer-head breakfast burrito (stuffed with a lot of the same things as the 'home fries,' plus great black beans and minus sausage, onions and aioli and with the advantage of wicked portability), artichoke-green chile dip (defies description, addictive in a way that is impossible to quantify), apple panini (same really good cheddar makes another appearance, this time melted on sun-dried tomato bread with apple slices and apple butter - have you ever had cheddar on your apple pie? Well, this is better), Pierogi Quesadilla (the cheddar, smashed potatos and carmalized onions make another appearance [there may be a theme developing], this time with sauerkraut and sour cream in quesadilla form), home-made chili on or off the Dirty Nachos. FrenchFries doesn't mind long distance driving that much and is seriously considering a couple Pittsburgh pilgrimages this fall for the sole purpose of eating there.

River Moon Cafe
This has been our go-to place for romantic, just the two of us dinners for F&FF for so long now that we couldn't believe that we hadn't already blogged about it. The River Moon Cafe ( is nestled in quiet, queer-friendly Lawrenceville and has the cutest chef we've ever met (in the sense rather than the L Word Soup Chef sense) as well as some truly fantastic food.
July05 051
One of the real draws here is their enormous tea list - this is the place that can be credited with turning Farofa from an inveterate member of the 'hot chocolate is the only non-disgusting hot beverage' club to a bona-fide tea drinker (for anyone out there who is trying to turn their mate into a tea drinker, FrenchFries would like you to know that it was the Black Currant tea that did the trick plus lots of patient positive reinforcement over a matter of months). The menu is pretty traditional, relying on standards like filet minon, steak a poivre, pork chops and pasta but the execution is exquisite. This has also been one of our favorite places to go for brunch as they do a package deal that includes drinks, fruit, pastry, a side of crispy potatoes or polenta and a main dish for $15 - and is always very tasty. I hope that they start to get a little more business with the new Children's Hospital is opening a few blocks away as it is frequently a little too empty when we have gone.
July05 052

Other favorites from the four years in Pittsburgh:
  • Mi Mexico (sadly closed - tiny little taqueria, replaced by Cuzamil, which is average americanized texmex)
  • D's SixPax & Dogz (ignore the name - go for the >900 beer selection and the fantastic hot dogs & french fries - far better than the Dirty O/Original Hot Dog Shop)
  • Green Mango Noodle Hut (the best Thai in Pittsburgh, order EVERYTHING)
  • Thai Cuisine (my favorite Thai until Noodle Hut opened, still very good)
  • Pierogies Plus (hot potato & cheese - if you have anything else, I don't know you)
  • Tram's Kitchen (divey Vietnamese, to-die-for spring rolls)
  • Square Cafe (dyke-a-licious, really good pancakes)
  • Mineo's Pizza (greasy, cheesy, oh so good)
  • Mad Mex (part of the Big Burrito group -Pittsburgh's answer to Philly's Starr empire - best margaritas in the 'burgh)
  • Kaya & the rest of the Big Burrito group (although Kaya and the other members of this group have had some misses as well as hits - see valentine's day for a reminder)
  • Abay (Great Ethiopian food, no more, no less)
If you are looking for more, I generally think the folks at PGH Micro-reviews do a good job, and I agree with most of the consensus opinions there. Soon to come - things that we will miss about not being in South Philly anymore.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Konak Turkish Restaurant (3/8/07)

I know that it has been a while since either Farofa or French Fries has been here... this is mostly due to the fact that French Fries has had not much of an appetite for food (the eating of or the writing about) until this past Thursday, March 15th. As it happens, French Fries has been trying to secure a residency position in Emergency Medicine and the day that the match results (the aforementioned Ides of March) were announced was consequently one of great stress and ultimately exultation, as French Fries will soon be moving to Philadelphia to join Farofa in eating and cooking... and being a medical resident, but since when did that take up any time? After all, the kids on Grey's Anatomy always seem to have scads of free time, though they don't eat much.

Which is all to explain the spotty updating of this site. But never fear - the remainder of March will be a season of restaurant reviewing like the world has never seen before. Edit: Jesus gay - it's JUNE! Well, that didn't work out as planned.
And so, this world-shaking event starts with our visit to Konak. Farofa had been here once before, and French Fries has always thought of anything involving hummus as comfort food, so it was a good fit for the evening. The appetizer menu had a couple options we had never seen, and there is nothing Farofa likes better than ordering mysterious food, so we opted for the Sigara Borek (translated as 'cigar for non-smokers' on the adorable menu) and the Imam Bayildi (translated as 'priest fainted').

Filo dough with feta
The sigara borek were delicate fried tubes of filo dough filled with the lightest, most delicate, soft feta cheese that either Farofa or French Fries has ever had. They totally blow out the idea that feta is always a firm, salty, aggressive cheese. French Fries felt like she could honestly have made an entire meal out of just them.

Amazing eggplant salad
Farofa's heart, however, was already given over to the Imam Bayildi. The reason for the funny name is apparently debated - the menu said that some people think the fainting was because of how much olive oil is needed to make the dish, while others think the priest fainted due to how delicious it is. Farofa's sensibilities are definitely with the latter group. This is one dish that Farofa & French Fries are definitely going to try to re-create at home if they come across any sweet tiny baby eggplants just begging to be sauteed with pine nuts, garlic and peppers in their Reading Terminal excursions.

Mussles skewer
Farofa also had the skewered pan-fried mussels, which she described as tasty, but suffered from comparison to our other two fantastic starters. For our main, we succumbed, as we almost always do at the type of restaurants where such things are available, to the allure of the 'everything plate.' It's like Noah's ark but with food, and it addresses French Fries's near-crippling inability to order decisively when she is nervous about other things, so a good solution. While we devoured our falafel, grape leaves, hummus and the tabouli salad, the ezme and eggplant salad did not do so well. We may just have been full from what came before, but I think it mostly was that, compared to the star dishes that started our meal and the very tasty basics that filled it out (the hummus zesty with lemon juice and green olive oil, the tabouli tasting of all wonderful fresh herbs), dishes that would have been fully serviceable at another restaurant, at Kanak are outshone completely.

Veggie Platter

Farofa: **** out of 5
French Fries: **** out of 5

Forks Down Verdict: The priest may really have fainted, and who can blame him with food this good? We'll be back soon for some more delicious Mediterranean chow.

Konak Turkish Restaurant
228 Vine St
Philadelphia, PA 19106


Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Kaya (2/14/07)

Farofa and French Fries will take almost any excuse to have a romantic dinner out - and Valentine's day is no exception... except that all our favorite restaurants jack up their prices to high heaven. We decided on Kaya because it's been a long-standing favorite of ours for evenings when Farofa knows that she'll want meat, and French Fries wants 'fancy vegetarian' and their fixed price menu was actually comparatively reasonable - $45 for a vegetarian tasting menu, and $55 for the meat-eater's version. In the past we'd been really impressed by Kaya's small plates, and the idea of a chef's tasting menu with lots of small plates seemed like a sure bet for good food, even on night that is apparently the restaurant business version of 'amateur night'.

First Course: Farofa got seared rare tuna with avocado, ginger-horseradish pickle, and shiso leaf, and French Fries the vegetarian starter of papaya and mango salad with romaine, dressed with a chili-lime vinagrette.

Seared tuna

Farofa: Having been spoiled by my first sisho experience, I admit my hopes were way too high for such a standard dish. It was a fine piece of tuna (3 actually, which was 2 too many) and I really liked the shreaded ginger on top, but the sisho had no place in this plate and tasted like an elder house plant.


French Fries: In retrospect, I actually think that this salad may have been one of the better parts of an overall disappointing dinner. At the time, there was some grinching on my part about the not-quite-ripe mango, but the warm papaya, sweet corn and the cilantro and lime dressing made up for that slight failing. It was crunchy and fresh tasting - hard things for a salad to manage in Pittsburgh in the middle of a blizzard - and I cleaned my plate - which wouldn't happen again until dessert.

Second Course: Farofa had lobster beignets with a lemon-chili mojo and French Fries gobbled some shiitake mushroom dumplings with sweet soy dipping sauce.

Lobster dumplings and zesty chipotle sauce

Farofa: Yikes! This sauce was so hot the tears rolled down. Even though it was a bit too much to enjoy in larger amounts, it was tasty and zesty, a good combination with the would-have-been lobster beignets, had there been any lobster in them. At first I thought I couldn't taste it because the dipping sauce's flavour was too overwhelming, but it turns out it was just fried dough - maybe they had a lobster in the kitchen *while* they were frying it...

valentines-day 046

French Fries: I did gobble these - but it was hunger providing most of the appeal, as the balance of flavors was tipped way too far towards sweet, even for my notoriously limitless sweet tooth. Maybe I'm just old-fashioned, but I like shitake and soy far better when they are savory and salty, respectively. I think most of the fault with this one fell on the dumpling wrappers rather than the actual choices made for the filling, but still, not an appealing dish aesthetically or gastronomically.

Farofa: The first thought that came to mind when French Fries plate arrived was how it looked like something from Top Chef, where every contestant used a porcelain spoon to serve sauce at one point or another.

Third Course: Farofa was given striped bass, served with littleneck clams in a coconut/chili broth with potatoes, corn and bok choy. French Fries instead had Tofu Pho.

bass and mussels

Farofa: The Striped Bass was flavourfull and the the tasty coconut sauce made me wish for a nice piece of bread for dipping, but I could have done without the clams (which were a bit chewy).

a huge block of tofu

French Fries: While I know that even the concept of vegetarian phở is blasphemy to true phở purists, I was looking forward to a nice big bowl of broth with, I had assumed, thin slices of fried or fresh tofu and lots of rice noodles and chile. Instead, I got a VERY large block of lightly fried tofu set atop some rice noodles that appeared to have had something of a passing acquaintance with broth in their past. I tried to keep my hopes up in the face of the lack of resemblance to the phở of my dreams - and, while the noodles were indeed flavorful and tender, the dish couldn't overcome the fact that the tofu hadn't been marinated (or had any attempt made to produce a flavor in it other than 'soy product') and the carrots were raw- their crispness in awkward contrast to the soft rice noodles.

Fourth Course: Farofa had a filet of beef with guajillo chili jus, served over warm chayote an hominy salad and French Fries had grilled tempeh served with fried pole beans, cauliflower puree and black olive mojo.

The most perect beef I had in the last 12 months

Farofa: Hands down the best piece of beef I have had in a months. Maybe one of the top 3 I have ever tasted in the United States. It was cooked to medium-rare perfection and and I delighted myself in it slowly and hapilly - the reduce wine sauce was a perfect match, just tangy enough but not too sweet - This was also my introduction to hominy, accompanied by seasoned carrots and chayote, complementing the stellar beef. The serving was probably larger than I needed, but I licked the plate clean.

Burnt seitan

French Fries: Farofa's meat came out before my 'main dish' and looked beautiful even to my vegetarian eyes. It looked even better in comparison when my dish appeared and the seitan not only suffered from the same lack of seasoning that the chunk of tofu had before it - it also had the addition of a centimeter of burnt char on the bottom. I tried a bite - it was inedible. I ended up eating the fried pole beans which were tasty, if a little over salted. I've never had burnt food at Kaya before, so I have to assume this was an aberration for the restaurant as a whole - but in the context of this dissapointing meal, it was the last straw.

Dessert: Farofa lived the V-day dream with a chocolate torte with raspberry-chili coulis and French Fries gratefully munched on Banana Cake served with caramelized banana compote and rum syrup.

Chocolate targe tasted really boring

Farofa: After this, I decided I don't like chocolate custards. I'm sure it was perfectly fine as a dish, but I need some flour in my chocolate dessert.

Banana cake, yumm

French Fries: Basically just banana bread with smashed, rum-drench banana on top, but it was filled with cinnamon and soft and tender in my mouth and so, blew the rest of the meal away by dint of not being burnt, bland or boring. If only the rest of the meal had stuck to these basics, I would have been so much happier. And while I haven't mentioned either the service of the ambiance up to this point (too distracted by complaining the crummy food) - both were warm and welcoming, especially nice because the weather outside was so lousy.

Farofa: **** out of 5
French Fries: * out of 5

Forks Down Verdict: An outstanding filet trumps any meal shortcomings. Unless you are a vegetarian.

2000 Smallman St
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

(412) 261-6565

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Delica rf-1 (2/11/07)

Coming soon to this very spot, a review by the traveling Farofa of her lunch at Delica rf-1 in San Francisco 's inimitable Ferry Building. (French Fries didn't get to go along to San Francisco, and is shamelessly hoping that Farofa picked up some toothsome goodies that will survive the trip back well). In the meantime, nosh on these yummy pictures.

Farofa(F): As a first timer in San Francisco I was overwhelmed by the possibilities of places to eat, but having only one day of leisure I had to place my bet on a few options; I decided to spend the day walking around and ended up by the water at the inimitable Ferry Building, where I had lunch at Delica rf-1. Despite the bizarre name, it is a pretty outstanding place to eat.

Delicia rf-1 is the brainchild of Kozo Iwata, apparently inspired, as many other restaurateurs before him have been, by the Alice Waters 'fresh, local, delicious' mandate. The whole 'Japanese Deli' concept sounds a little funny at first, but it breaks down into a little bit bento, a little bit blackboard, a lot of very good produce made into very good food. It's in an ultra-modern space in the high-rent district of the Ferry Building just south of Chinatown), and the prices reflect that to a certain extent, but are overall pretty reasonable.

Though I generally don't care about vegan options, this might be a good place for those into non-dairy meat-free cuisine. The menu is vast and I wanted a little taste of everything... but restrained myself to a few samples – something fried, something soupy, something veggie, and something weird/different.

Above: Miso soup, Fried Oyster, Kakiage Tempura and Roast Beef Sushi

I like tempura and it’s often a sure bet for comfort food. There is only one way for tempura to be bad: if it's cold. The Kakiage Tempura (mix of shredded burdock root, carrots, onions, and edamame with white shrimp) was cold tempura. Is it too much to ask for tempura to be fried shortly before serving? Maybe I've been spoiled by the other 4,782 Japanese restaurants I have been to in my life, but it was most disappointing because the produce used was clearly fresh and good.

Fortunately, that was the only bad thing about Delica rf-1 (my mother would add that the tableware was also lacking, but I was hungry enough to not care). The fried oyster had a perfect crunchy outside and soft warm inside. I almost got another one because It had been a while since I had good fried Oyster (warning: stay away from Reading Terminal's Pearl's Oyster Bar in Philly). And while the tableware may not have been much, the view was spectacular.

I ordered Roast Beef Sushi for fun, it just sounded weird (and I’ve had successful experiences with weird-sounding sushi - fois-gras sushi being the best). The menu said “Our original sushi dish with Meyer Ranch natural, hormone-free beef, topped with baby arugula, minced shallots, and julienne radish, wrapped with Nori seaweed. Wasabi is included.” – and the result was a tasty sushi, though it had also been sitting on display a little longer than I would have liked. Interestingly, even though it was a two-bite investment, it filled me up the way a good roast-beef platter fills you in. I felt a bit like Alice in Wonderland.

Miso soup with Shimeji mushrooms, brown mushrooms, and age tofu. ($3.25)

I don't think anyone would consider Miso soup the highlight of a meal, but this one was a star. It was by far, the tastiest miso soup I have ever had - and I love miso soup. Miso soup is supposed to be served with sashimi to clean your palate in between different fish (among other things), but this one was made to shine: The miso was high quality, the shimeji and brown mushrooms were fresh, and even the age tofu (which I'm not a big fan of), was filled with the flavorful broth, making every bite as pleasurable as the last. I had a big smile on my face.

French Fries Note from Afar: Some bonus linkaliciousness with a recipe to duplicate Chef Iwata's sesame dressing (it says for over asparagus, I say for over anything)

Farofa: **** out of 5
French Fries: "Whining at the unfairness of the universe."

Forks Down Verdict: Farofa says YUM to this great lunch spot, but she hopes that if she ever goes back the tempura is hot.

Delica rf-1
1 Ferry Bldg
San Francisco, CA 94111

(415) 834-0344

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Ferry Building Marketplace

Farofa is in San Francisco for a few days for a seminar and decided to take one day to explore the city. Having never been here, there is much to choose from but culinary explorations always come first, so with less than 6 hours to spare, the Ferry Building Marketplace seemed like the best choice.


The place is gorgeous and even though it only has about 40 fairly small merchants, it puts Reading Terminal Market to shame. Farofa is a big fan of open markets, specially the kind that mixes high-end cuisine and straightforward local produce. Mercado Municipal Paulistano is and always will be the number one on the list, but Ferry Building Marketplace has made its mark.

Fresh produce

It's hard to walk around in a place like this and not be able to buy fresh produce (they wouldn't have survived the trip home 3 days later). Cowgirl Fromagerie was hard to stay away from - I looked like a Dickens character staring in from the window, hopeful and wishing for the wondrous contents of the display.

Fresh cheese
Creme Fraiche, Mascarpone, Ricotta...

For lunch, I decided to go to Delica rf-1, which deserved its own review. I also picked up two bottles of rosé (French Fries' favourite), a 2005 Bandol Terrebrune that was recommended to me, and a 2005 Mount Tamalpais Gris for a taste of the local variety.


All the walking around called for a snack; found one at the Golden Gate Meat Company in the form of a quarter pound of Hot Coppa - which was so unexpectedly spicy that demanded a full water bottle and a can of coke. Totally worth it!

More meat

The best stop was at Stonehouse California Olive Oil, where I got an 8oz bottle of their Lisbon Lemon extra virgin olive oil (made by crushing fresh, tree-ripened citrus fruit together with the olives at the time of pressing). Of course, this decision took a good half hour and forced me to try all of their various pressings and blends. Oh the hardship...

I learned that citrus oils make wonderful vinaigrettes when paired with white balsamic vinegar, which I had not tried yet (we did try the oil at home with rigatoni and fresh Parmesan and it was spectacular).

Stonehouse California Olive Oil

To wrap up the tour in style, I had to visit French Fries' preferred chocolate store, See's Candies and get a box of her all-time favorite, California Brittle (half dark, half milk chocolate). It was just what was missing to complete the pile of gifts accumulated over my long trip to get to snowy Pittsburgh for Valentines Days.

All the yumminess

Farofa: **** out of 5
French Fries: approves of all the gifts!

Forks Down Verdict: Fun place to spend a weekend morning and have brunch - will come back next time in SFO

Ferry Building Marketplace
1 Ferry Bldg
San Francisco, CA 94111

(415) 834-0344

Monday, January 29, 2007

The Continental (12/30/06)

Yes, even the frenchiest of French Fries and the crunchiest of Farofas must Starr if they want to munch in Philly. We find our intrepid heroines brunching once again, the day after our Apamate visit, at The Continental (one of many Stephen Starr outposts) for some restoratives to recover from past debauch/prepare ourselves for NYE debauchery yet to come.

(photo credit: Messy & Picky - shamelessly YOINKED! because our outdoor photo turned out crummy)

On arrival, French Fries was in that still-half asleep daze that precludes wise menu-decision making while Farofa had already decided that she wanted to try yet another version of Eggs Benedict, as her former favorite (at More than Just Ice Cream) has been AWOL for too many weeks now. Farofa ordered a plate of Shoestring Fries hoping that her namesake dish of carbs + grease would force a meal decision from French Fries.

Shoestring Fries ($3.50)

The mountain of potatoey goodness woke French Fries up enough to order a Spinach and Feta omelette - just in time because the fish delivery alongside commenced shortly thereafter, and the banging and clanging of the cellar door made quite a dent in the otherwise fun, if olive-bedecked, ambiance. Food was quick to arrive and very generously proportioned (if you hadn't gotten that sense from the Swiss Alp of Spuds above).

Farofa was only a single bite into her Eggs Benedict with Ham ($8.50) when she noticed that despite the fish delivery having completed its business, multiple passerby seemed to be tripping over something just outside the window. We peeked through the blinds and noticed that the fish guy had left one of the edges of the cellar door sticking up a good 2-3 inches from level. We mentioned it to the waiter but no sooner had we done so that a very loud crash came from outside. Looking out the window revealed the prone form of a middle -aged lady... not moving. French Fries hesitated, not wanted to jump in if someone from the restauraunt was already on top of it, but as no-one seemed to be moving, ended up going outside to help up the nice woman. She had had her face turned into quite the bloody mess by her trip & fall over the cellar door, but was otherwise intact. She came inside and the people at the Continental then started moving, getting her ice & whatnot. She didn't want an ambulance called for her but it was clear that she was going to have some nasty scabs for at least the next few weeks.

Emergencies inside the hospital and the work that needs doing in the middle of a non-hospital emergency are Farofa's stock in trade, and so it wasn't the blood or the accident that kept Farofa from enjoying her Spinach and Feta Omelette ($8.00) as much as she might have otherwise. Partly it was the adrenaline surge that resulted in her dropping both pieces of toast. Partly it was guilt about not mentioning the screwed up door earlier. And partly it was that the eggs, both in color and consistency were JUST a wee bit too cafeteria "egg mixture" for farofa, although the spinach was fresh and the feta pillowy and tasty.

Farofa: *** out of 5
French Fries: *** out of 5

Forks Down Verdict: Trendy olive light fixtures don't take away from tasty & affordable brunch food - but bloody accidents caused by carelessness outside do.

The Continental
138 Market St
Philadelphia, PA 19106

(215) 923-6069

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Apamate (12/29/06)

Farofa and I had wanted to try Apamate for a while - it's just a few blocks from the house and I had been getting good tummy-feelings about it from the reviews I'd heard, so on a cold December day a few days before New Year's we wandered down that way for bunch-time tapas.

The ruddy red/orange walls and industrial fixings made the cold day seem less biting, and the wall of Spanish specialty products (including salt-packed anchovies for Farofa and yummy-looking Mebrillio for French Freis) made our mouths water before we even opened the menu. Farofa and French Fries are both kinda little, and have gotten spanked with the greedystick at tapas places by ordering above & beyond what their bellies can manage in the past. Determined not to make this mistake, Farofa stuck to a mere 3 tapas from from the list of about 15. French Fries always hopes for happy eggs to be a part of her brunch-time occasions and so was dissapointed to learn that they were out of the Spanish tortillas and was convinced to settle on quiche by the incusion of her favorite drunken goat cheese.

(Counterclockwise From L-R):
Setas Al Ajillo
Shitake & Portabella mushrooms sautéed with olive oil, garlic, parsley & a Rioja reduction ($2.25)

Esparragos Con Jamon Asparagus wrapped in Serrano ham, lightly breaded and sauteed in olive oil ($3.25)
Carne Con Patatas Al Cabrales A slice of griled rib eye served with a cabrales reduction sauce & crispy potatoes ($3.25)

Quiche Vegetariano asparagus, piquillo peppers & drunken goat cheese from murcia semi soft goat cheese bathed in red wine ($7.95)