Around Town With HughE

Chef Jezabel Careaga as Chef in Residency at Volvér

Chef Jezabel Careaga Date of Residency: January 26 to March 13, 2022

This season, Latin American Chef Jose Garces hosts emerging, minority chefs from around the Philadelphia region for six-week residencies. Chef Jezabel Careaga is an entrepreneur, chef, woodworker, designer, and community leader from Palpalá, Jujuy, NW Argentina. In addition to her degree in Tourism & Hotel Management focusing on international languages and business, she received a progressive education encompassing climate change, sustainability, and mental health – issues that she cares about deeply today.

Chef Jezabel Careaga and Nate Johnson, Culinary Director at Garces

Chef Careaga’s menu includes Picada, Escabeche de Berejena Toast, Empanadas, Tamales Saltenos, Vacio con Papas Estrelladas, Estofado, Locro, Queso y Membrillo and Panqueque Con Dulce De Leche.

According to Metro Philly: Careaga is well known throughout the city. Hailing as an entrepreneur, chef, woodworker, designer and community leader from Palpalá, Jujuy, in northwestern Argentina, her impact is shown in Philly’s culinary community and beyond.

Panqueque con dulce de leche Crepes, Caramelized Milk, Sweet Cream Flan

When at Volvér under Careaga’s residency, patrons can indulge in her picada (featuring mortadella, giardineira, goats milk feta, iberico chorizo and toasted sourdough), empanadas (made with braised beef, chimichurri and salsa criolla), estofada (a wild mushroom ragu with creamy polenta, parmesan and toasted pine nuts), vacio con papas estrelladas (a butcher’s steak with crispy salted potatoes, celery aioli and chimichurri), panqueque con dulce de leche (crepes with caramelized milk and sweet cream flan), and more.

Marcello Giordano, Owner, Giordano Garden Groceries, Chef Jennifer Carroll, and Marisa Magnatta, WMMR
Heidi Hogan, Aramark, Ann Marie Solomon, Aramark and Scott Campanella, COO Garces Group ·
Luis Rodriguez
Afea Tucker and Rhonda Willingham
Jennifer Rodriguez, Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Adam Ali
Bill Gehrman, Enroute Congratulations to Bill, and Enroute Marketing on their 15th Anniversary!!, Laura Burkhardt, Executive Director of Avenue of the Arts, and Michael Newmuis, COS Visit Philly

About Chefs in Residency
This season, Latin American Chef Jose Garces hosts emerging, minority chefs from around the Philadelphia region for six-week residencies.

Throughout each residency, we will raise funds to support the inaugural line-up of chefs and their current and/or future projects. Donations can be made, similar to tipping a server, when the dinner check is presented. The Garces Foundation will match up to the first $5,000. The matching grant will be donated by the Garces Foundation which offers medical and educational resources to the hospitality community.

Learn more at The Garces Foundation.


Good Fun, Good Food Events – What to Wear, What Is There

Hey guys, sorry I am late posting today, so many events happening and lots of processing of photos going on. I’ll make it up to you like right now. I’m going to tell you about three cool events happening this weekend that you can go to…they’re fun, and delicious. I’ll be shooting each of them so bring your smile.


9th Annual South Street Oktoberfest
Saturday, September 16, 2017, 12:00pm to 8:00pm

For the 9th year in a row, Oktoberfest will be held in front of the restaurant on the 700 block of South Street beneath a massive tent, rain or shine. Guests can attend and purchase beers and food on a pay-as-you-go basis or upgrade to an exclusive VIP package- including no-wait bathrooms, a Bavarian buffet from 1-6pm, six tokens good for beer, official Brauhaus Oktoberfest t-shirt, drawstring bag and a glass liter stein filled with “Oktoberfest survival supplies” to take home, all for $115, tax and gratuity included (limited tickets available).



With 10 German beers available on draught, a wealth of German food, live Oom-pah music, German dancers and more, it is one of the fall’s most exciting food-and-drink events and a do-not-miss celebration for beer lovers!!






3:30 – 4:30 PM BAND


5:00 – 6:00 PM BAND



All of the Oktoberfest fun is open to the general public, but a select number of VIP tickets are available too. WE DO NOT HAVE OUR REGULAR MENU SERVED. FOOD IS AVAILABLE OUTSIDE OR THROUGH THE VIP PASSES.


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Les Dames d’Escoffier Philadelphia

Les Dames d’Escoffier Philadelphia presents the 2nd Annual Outstanding in Her Field Farm Dinner, this year honoring local food advocate Ann Karlen. The event will take place on Sunday September 17, 2017 at The Inn at Grace Winery in Glen Mills. Guests will have the opportunity to sample locally sourced cuisine and sip wines made on the property.

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The dinner’s honoree, Ann Karlen, has been long time food advocate in her community, helping to found Fair Food, a non-profit organization formed in 2000 to build a local food economy for the Delaware Valley region by connecting family farms to the Philadelphia marketplace.

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Tickets are on sale now starting at $125 and can be purchased at bit.ly/ticketslesdames2017

Philadelphia has a storied culinary history, and professional women have been integral to the development of restaurants, catering companies, farms and food production since the city was founded.


In order to honor this heritage, Les Dames d’Escoffier Philadelphia developed Outstanding In Her Field in 2016 to recognize a Philadelphia-area woman for her accomplishments in the food, beverage or hospitality  industry.


“We are thrilled to return to Inn at Grace Winery for our 2nd Annual Outstanding in Her Field Farm Dinner,” said Les Dames d’Escoffier Philadelphia Event Co-Chair and President Natanya DiBona. “Our annual dinner an incredible event that  brings together chefs, producers and foodies alike in a beautiful setting among the vines of this famous vineyard.  It celebrates the accomplishments of a pioneering woman in food, like Ann Karlen, while raising scholarship money to support the next generation of women in food.”



Up on the Roof – The Chefs of Passyunk at Bok Bar – NEW DATE!!!!
Monday, September 18, 2017
6:30pm to 8:30pm
Bok Bar (1901 S. 9th Street)
Presented by East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District

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Twenty chefs from East Passyunk Avenue come together for a special culinary event at one of the most beautiful rooftop sites in the city. East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District presents the second year for “Up On The Roof – The Chefs of Passyunk at Bok Bar” on Monday, September 18, 2017 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm.

 Participating chefs will be serving some of their favorites dishes from their restaurants, as well as one-time specials made exclusively for the event. Tickets will go on sale by the end of August at www.visiteastpassyunk.com. Proceeds from this special community benefit support the programs and activities of EPABID.

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Back at Bok, 20 of East Passyunk’s award-winning chefs Up on the Roof at the Bok Bar for hors d’oeuvres, a raffle, a cash bar, and DJ Christophonic Monday, September 18th. Tickets are $40 per person and include hors d’oeuvres prepared and passed by East Passyunk’s chefs. There’s Free Parking across the street from Bok Bar in the school playground.

In the case of inclement weather the event will be held on Tuesday, September 19.


Philly’s Latest Adult Playground Open’s with Revolutions Bowling, Bar & Grille – Sneak Preview

Philly’s Latest Adult Playground Open’s with Revolutions Bowling, Bar & Grille – Sneak Preview


Last week the folks behind Revolutions Bowling, Bar & Grille at 1009 Canal St. (Revolutions at Penn Treaty) (Next to The Fillmore, Punchline and across from Sugarhouse Casino), gave me a tour of their newly opened entertainment venue.  Revolutions at Penn Treaty is a 52,000 square-foot venue that is full of fun for everyone. The two-level complex features a 26-lane bowling experience including 12 private VIP lanes, along with a full service restaurant, courtesy of Burger & Beer Joint. The first floor features a 21-and-over “club within a club,” the first of its kind in the Revolutions family, with beverage specials courtesy of the Flair Bar bar-tending spectacle. Playground

At the time I was there they didn’t have the drink menu ready, but they had the “drink” props set upPlayground

This one is called “Love Potion”Playground

Yo AdrienPlayground


The Platinum Blonde


There’s an arcade on the 2nd floor


The building is housed in an old warehouse and the windows give you a great view of the skyline,

and the Delaware River with BF Bridge as a backdrop


The chef for Burger & Beers is chef Kim Malcolm, she was last at PYT



There’s bowling on two floors, and it’s not just bowling, it’s like bottle service bowling – you get your own server. And look at the comfy couches.


Playground Playground


In some spots, the marketing department told me, they left the original graffiti that lined the walls of the former factory


After my day tour I headed back for the first night of the soft opening




Mike and I both had burgers, and they were delicious. Then for dessert Mike opted for the Fried Oreo Cookies.

This is the Flair Bar, which bartenders not only serve you a specialty drink, but they do it with a flair a la Tom Cruise in the movie Cocktail.


Come by for the show. (Tommy Up stopped by and practice, maybe this is his new gig. Remember there was a time
it was rumored he was opening PYT Burger near the Fillmore.)

PlaygroundRevolutions is open now, but the official grand opening is slated for next week with entertainment, food and an open bar.

The hours of operation are 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Kids are allowed to hang out until 9PM.


The Menu at Made In America Is Very Hipster, Prolific & Reasonable

Earlier I mentioned the drink prices, now I noticed they put up the Made In America Menu

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I have to say it’s epic. So many choices, and interesting choices, as well as the standard burgers, dogs and fries.  Love the titles for the “eateries” too. Banh Voyage – Then they want you to chose your adventure.







Menu  Menu HD1_1917 (Custom) Menu


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Hebros Kitchen (1) (Custom) Menu Menu




There’s also a food/drink court on The Oval

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Here are the prices for the drinks. Remember there are water stations for you to fill up your water bottles

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for FREE – Also remember Budweiser is picking up your Lyft tab on Saturday and Sunday nights. When you get the ride, or the next morning when you awake, thank them using the HASHTAG #GiveADamn cause they do. Drink responsibly.

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Here’s The Made In America Set List Line Up

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For the fifth consecutive year, United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey will benefit from the “Budweiser Made in America” music festival over Labor Day weekend. A portion of the proceeds from the event will support United Way’s work to improve education from cradle to career.


Enjoy the festival! Be sure to visit us in the Cause Village to learn more about our Education initiatives. The Cause Village is on the North Side of the Festival below Eakins Oval.


Philly Gossip: Tiffani Thiessen and Jesse McCartney Hang in Philly, Ian Crumm Parties with Kyle Jenner

Good Wednesday, if this Philly Gossip entry looks somewhat familiar it is. I posted this originally on Monday, but then my site switch over to the new site, which your’re looking at right now. This entry started getting a lot of hits so I need to repost it. This is going to happen alot this week as I have to repost entries of interest that I want captured on my new, refreshed site.

Paul Makerie and Tiffani Thiessen

Paul Makerie and Tiffani Thiessen

Tiffani Thiessen aka Kelly Kapowski on NBC’s Saved by the Bell and as Valerie Malone on Fox’s Beverly Hills, 90210. These days Tiffani has a cooking show on the Cooking Network called appropriately “Dinner at Tiffani’s” which airs at 8PM on Sundays. She was in town making an appearance at the Sweet Paul Makerie creative retreat which was held at the Navy Yard in URBAN over the weekend.

Tiffani Thiessen and Chef Michael Solomonov

Tiffani Thiessen and Chef Michael Solomonov

In between the meets, greets and demonstrations, Tiffani spent a lot of time dining at Mike Solomonov eateries. Friday night she had dinner at Zahav, Sunday before leaving town she grabbed some grub at Dizengoff and dessert at Federal Donuts. I’d say there’s a segment at Dinner’s at Tiffani’s in Mike Solo’s career.

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Friday night my phone was blowing up for another reason too, seems Jesse McCartney was in town and his fans wanted to know. Nothing was on the radar ie Social Media which led me to piece the story together, but then Saturday night Jesse stepped out to grab dinner from Steve’s at 16th and Chestnut. He was kind enough to pose with a few fans inside one of Philly’s famed must have cheesesteak places.

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Sunday, shots of Jesse began showing up from Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pa. Philly was just being used as a base for Jesse, as it was only 2 hrs away from his Sunday gig, and Philly being what it is, is better to sleep over.

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Ian Michael Crumm and his bestie, budding songstress Hannah Krupa had an awesome time at Cochella this past weekend, partying with lots of stars including Kyle Jenner. Next up for Ian, he’s headed to the Tribeca Film Festival Thursday night. Follow him on Snap Chat to be a fly on the wall. Check back on Friday for more Philly Gossip.




The Vesper Club Opens and Yes, I’m going to say it’s a Game Changer. Super nice, supper club, lounge

It seems that the City is going through a club cultural change the past few years. A decade ago the focus was on the Delaware Ave clubs, then nightlife was wild and out of control in Old City, the Rittenhouse Square area opened dance clubs and the crowd shifted above Broad to dance the night away at G Lounge, Whisper and Rumor. This year folks are still dancing, but not at as many clubs. G lounge has closed and become 1925 Lounge, a laid back speakeasy like club that serves delicious food from Davio’s; the setting is swanky, velvety seats, bottle service, nooks and a young to early 30s crowd. A scene not to be seen, but to chill with friends and enjoy the hourly “dance” shows.  Private without a secret password, except to get into the Vault where late last year Nikki Minaj and Meek Mills canoodled.

Whisper is now CODA, a live music entertainment spot. It’s an interesting concept, early evening rock and roll bands rule the stage, then towards the midnight hour it’s back to local and famous DJ’s playing  pumping music to keep the kids on the dance floor til the after hours club closes at 3AM. Rumor is still the place the millennials, bridge and tunnel crowd goes, filling the multiple dance floors til the lights go on at 2AM. Then there’s the more social/drinking establishments, the Irish Pubs, Rouge, D’Angelo’s, and the “speakeasies” Franklin Mortgage, Holts and even though it’s not in the Rittenhouse area but just an Uber ride away Hop Sing Laundromat.

 Last night I attended a new drinking establishment that encapsulated many of those aspects all under one very classy, fashionable roof. The Vesper Club, (223 S Sydenham St. – the alley that runs between Walnut and Locust just above 15th Street) founded in 1941 as one of the premier private supper clubs until it closed last year, has re-opened under new ownership, a similar but more polished concept capturing the essence of it’s heyday in the 40’s and 50’s as it was meant to be, a place to be seen, to see, enjoy and relax.

I had been to the Vesper Club a dozen times over the past decade or so, as I had friends who were members. I was always fascinated by this mural on the wall which was in one of the main dining rooms. I was excited to see that it was still there in what is now a lounge, seating area where live music plays from a small stage tucked in the corner. There will be dancing I’m told, and last night there was dancing.

 The staff is friendly and I like their uniforms, grey shirts, tie and a vest, but I the club doesn’t seem restricted to any serious dress code, but I would suggest cocktail, after work, night out on the town fashionable is the vibe humming through the place. Drinks were tasty and plentiful at last nights friends, family and industry night. Service was with a smile by Pat Bader, Stefany Stuber and Juan Sosa, who were at the main bar as you walked into the Vesper Club.

 Jordan Walls and Russ Bryant
There were passed Hors d’oeuvres consisting of pork belly smoked gooseberry, traditional Jumbo Gulf Shrimp, seared tuna, lamb loin, asparagus shooters, creme brulee, and other delicious treats.
The main dining room 
 The seafood bar can be seen as you first walk into the establishment

 Behind this “bookshelf”
 is a staircase that leads to the “speakeasy”
and you must know the password, which will be changed every day. There’s a phone at the top of the steps which rings to the phone on the bar downstairs. Say the password and you’re in like Flynn. 

 The owners of the new Vesper Club restored the building, and really did a great job at retaining many of the elements from the original concept including the downstairs bar.  

Aaron, Jon Leahy and Tony McReynolds, Bar Manager.
 There’s three areas in the speakeasy, the main room
 and two lounge areas on either end of the main bar
 Chris Donatello, Tom Vandenberg, John Barry and Karen Towsey.
 Kristin Detterline, Philly Style Magazine and Evan Solomon.


 Back upstairs, this is the main bar on the first floor and this floor has many of the same elements as the speakeasy, but it’s more of the supper club style, with a dance floor, although toe tapping is encouraged too. There are seats at the well stocked bar, TV’s to watch sports, and along the wall stools and wall table.

 The original floor from the Vesper Club looks brand spanking new

 Chef Ken Wallace prepares some of the Hors d’oeuvre. This is a new kitchen for the Vesper Club. The former kitchen is now part of  new section of Miscounduct , the popular bar located around the corner. The two establishments are owned by the same people.

 Derm Farrell, musical director of Vesper with the Mark Forchic Trio. Every night there will be live music or DJ music. There will be dancing, did I mention that?

Derm tells me “We have live music every night. Jazz/blues/piano instrumental during dinner service. Then there is a small transition just before dinner service ends where it changes over, depending what day of the wk it is, to a two piece, trio or full band performing crowed pleasers from past and present to get the people moving. We have a stage extension which lets us host up to 8 musicians on stage at the one time. I’ve got a massive mix of some of Philadelphia best bands on our books so you won’t be seeing the same this over and over. We are trying to cover as many sounds as possible. On Fridays and Saturdays I will have a DJ down stairs in the hideaway dressed in a smart suit spinning the best of lounge beats.”

There’s a nice lounge seating area too where Aida Sparta, Julie Lav, and Sharon Kaplan enjoyed the view under the velvety wall paper.
 Congrats on your engagement Wendy Wilhelm and Peter Caperonis
 Julia Tackett, Julie Faulkner and Caitlin Rotaiski
 Chris Cucchi and Michelle Conron
 There are a lot of bathrooms, single rooms with leather walls and your own sink.
 Tony and Amanda Pettinelli
 Caroline Farrell and Kristen Billiris

Did I mention that there would be dancing?
Drink, Dine & Dance starting on April 13

Christine Hazel 14th season of Hell’s Kitchen – Viewing Party and new Lobster BLT at Chickie’s & Pete’s #FoodPorn dishes

Gordon Ramsay’s 13th season of Hell’s Kitchen just ended in December, crowning Florida’s Chef La Tasha McCutchen who took the title and executive chef job of Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill at Caesars Atlantic City, a prize package worth $250,000.

Last week Hell’s Kitchen kicked off it’s 14th season, and features a local person: Chef Advisor for the Chickie’s & Pete’s restaurant group, Christine Hazel. Over the year’s there have been several contestants from the Philly area, and one, Philly’s Christina Wilson, was the winner of the 10th Season of Hell’s Kitchen on FOX! Every Tuesday is the viewing party at the Chickie’s & Pete’s at Parx’s Casino.
Chef advisor Christine Hazel tells me she started working as a bartender at Chickie’s & Pete’s while attending culinary arts school, and when she was finished she worked her way up in the kitchen to the position she holds now, and thanks chef advisor. Her job is to overlook the food preparation at all the Chickie’s & Pete’s, and that includes creating new dishes, which she has just done. Plus for the first time ever Chickie’s & Pete’s is going to be serving desserts. Christine is whipping up the dessert menu as we speak and tells me that it’s debut is about a month away.
The new additions have been added to the menu in the past few weeks and include French Onion Burger, Crabby Oysters, Mussels and
 the most delicious BLT you will ever have in your life and only $13.95
 I forgot to get a shot of the menu for the title of these mussels, but they’re spicy, with sausage too. So good.

 If you’re a follower of mine on instagram and Twitter you know I’m trying to find the best Onion Soup in the area. #1 definitely Stephen Starr’s Parc, then there’s Little Pete’s which is just delicious. Well the #1 French Onion Burger has to be this one at Chickie’s & Pete’s.

Thursday March 12 7PM

Chef Christine Hazel’s Menu Tasting Event


First Look U-Bahn (don’t call it a basement bar) Hosts The Delaware Valley Legacy Fund Our Night Out Party

The team behind Brü Craft and Wurst keep the German vibe going at their subterranean bar U-Bahn, set to open officially next week, but Tuesday night

the Delaware Valley Legacy Fund hosted its successful monthly OurNightOut networking mixer at the industrial the 3,300 square foot space

 which includes
two bars and a kitchen. U-Bahn will offer local beers and food
including cured meats, cheeses and specialty sandwiches.
 It might be winter, but I’m wearing a t-shirt cause I look good
 Photos provided by Aversa Pr. I was supposed to be at this event but my photo exhibit was postponed from January to Feb on this Tues. I’ll write more about that great event on Tuesday.
 I love this trend of classic video games in a bar. Get off your phone and play some pacman!!
 Hey are they TV’s
 Hey Mr DJ put a record on.
I think this is going to be a pretty big deal, it’s like a subterranean beer garden
Hey Jim Donovan from CBS3!!
The Delaware Valley Legacy Fund
Heroes Luncheon is Sunday, April 12, 2015 12:30pm to 3:00pm at Hotel Monaco.

OPENING SOON New Restaurants on Chestnut Street – And A Food Review

I took a walk around Philly Thursday and noticed a few new eateries that are about to make the City a little more exciting.

I’m really excited that my favorite pizza place is opening up downtown at 703 Chestnut Street. Luigi’s Pizza Fresca. They have a few stores in South Jersey and one across the street from where I live in Fairmount. For a short time they owned Lulu’s at 236 Market Street, but that place has since closed.
I chatted with the gal at the Fairmount location and she said that within a week the new location should be opened. They use the best cheese and have the best chicken wings.

 Update on Butcher Bar (2034 Chestnut Street.) which is owned by the Valanni/Varga/Mercato’s George Anni. It’s supposed to be completed by June 2015. I’m a big fan of their eateries so I look forward to patronizing this nugget. You can read more here at PhillyMag’s Foobooz.
 Utrecht Art Supplies at 2020 Chestnut St closed a few years back, but seems to be on the brink of new life.
as the KJ Choi Corporation has filed for a liquor license.
You may know them as the folks who own Food & Friends in Rittenhouse Square. It’s a cute grocery store, coffee shop and beer take out place. Now the sign has been up there for a little bit, but I checked with the LCB and the application is still pending. I have no doubt as this will happen as the it’s right near several new residential high rises. (Photos above borrowed from Yelp.)
 The Chestnut Street – Philly Bagels Place is just about to open. I love their Hot Bagels sign. They’re located across from Nordstrom Rack at 17th and Chestnut Street.
Not on Chestnut, but noteworthy. 
I went to Gyukaku Philly last week. The idea is kinda fun, there’s a hibachi grill in the middle of the table, and you have an option to cook your own meat, and vegetables. Kory and I both had appetizers, and he had two drinks. I had a diet coke. The bill was $101, which I think is a little expensive. I would call this a date place or with lots of friends place. I was surprised that the eatery itself seemed so worn already, unless they were going for that. And now a word from our sponsors.
 The Shishito Peppers are back at Penn 6. I really love them.