Food & Wine Tours Philadelphia, Gets It Right

By Danya Henninger  |  October 7, 2013
Credit: Danya Henninger

Food & Wine's Kate Krader is originally from Philadelphia, but in the past decade, she's made only one trip down from her new hometown of NYC. (Even F&W editor Dana Cowin’s early hint that something was happening here, published in 2007, didn’t tug strongly enough on Krader’s palate.)

But as we know, things here have exploded since then, so in the November issue of the magazine, we get a huge spread on the Philly food scene (online here). Accompanied by native and well-versed dining partners like Questlove, the City Paper’s Adam Erace and Edible Philly’s Joy Manning, Krader makes her way through our culinary landscape. With those guides, it’s no surprise she hit many of the city’s hottest spots.

Talula’s Garden chef Sean McPaul wows her with a tomato salad, and Vedge’s Rich Landau sweeps her off her feet with beets. Though Pizzeria Vetri wasn’t yet open, Krader gets a sneak peak of the pizzas and approves. She also falls for Alla Spina’s “North Philly cheesesteak.”

Maccheroni alla mugnaia is apparently missing from the NY scene, because Joe Cicala’s single 60-foot-long strand of pasta at Le Virtu knocks Krader off her feet (though she says that during her visit, at least half a dozen people referred to East Passyunk as “the new Williamsburg," a claim we’re dubious about unless she went with half a dozen other New Yorkers).

The bread Eli Kulp serves at Fork was deemed noteworthy - imagine, impressing someone from NYC with bread! - and even usually shy Peter Serpico welcomes the out-of-town writer to Serpico with a hearty laugh and smile, thrilling her with his fried duck buns. Vernick’s toast gets the final shout out on this visit, and you're left certain there's no way Krader will wait another 10 years for a return trip.