lawgirl3278's Profile

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Brunch/lunch rec near 4th & South St.?

Famous 4th Street Deli for sure. The Royal Tavern if you don't mind a short walk.

Oct 17, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Homemade Gnocchi at Restaurants

I thought the gnocchi at Laurel were amazing.

Sep 22, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Finally scored a Laurel reservations...any recommendations?

If there's gnocchi, get it. Soo good.

Sep 15, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia


Had the pleasure of eating there last night. It was fantastic. The best meal I've had since, well, eating at Laurel actually. I had the hamachi appetizer, the skate wing and chocolate souffle. All amazing, and the wine selection was excellent.

Aug 14, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

LaBan Reviews Volver

I couldn't get over the phone charger comment. Pretty pretentious imo!

Jul 23, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

5 NYC females having a girls weekend in Philly - where to go?

Positano Coast is not far from your hotel. It's a great place for cocktails and snacks.

Jul 23, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Rudest grocery checker remark

I had a long day at work staring at the computer and stopped at Whole Foods on my way home. The checker said, "Wow you look really tired." Thanks jerk.

Apr 28, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Not About Food

TRADER JOE'S:Microwave friendly

The reduced guilt mac and cheese is a staple in my fridge.

Mar 27, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Chains

Restaurants everyone loves--except you

I'll add Green Eggs to the list. Been there twice (the original location) and the food was so-so and the service was not great.

One time I went I asked for a breakfast burrito. She said they were out of beans and I'd have to order something else. No more than 5 minutes after I placed my order, a breakfast burrito is served to the customer next to me. I asked the server what was up (I didn't see her until she brought our food) and she flatly said, "oh they just bought some more beans." So I was stuck with a greasy breakfast skillet I didn't like.

I don't get how people wait in long lines for their food and service.

Feb 25, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

"Cake Boss" coming to Center City

I have no opinion one way or the other, since I've never been. Just sharing the news


Feb 12, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Laurel, new BYOB on EPx from Top Chef contestant Nicholas Elmi

Thanks! An excellent review. I'm so glad he mentioned the gnocchi, that was the highlight of my meal there.

Feb 07, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Laurel, new BYOB on EPx from Top Chef contestant Nicholas Elmi

Three bells from LaBan. I can't access the full review without an Inquirer subscription.


Feb 07, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Top Chef NOLA - Ep. #17/Finale Part 2 - 02/05/14 (Spoilers)

Wow they put it out two days early! For some reason I can't access it without an Inquirer subscription

Feb 07, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Food Media & News

Russian government won't import Greek yogurt for U.S. Olympians

Andy Cohen on Bravo did a great joke about this. He said that the Russians were blocking Greek yogurt because, like the gays, yogurt is highly cultured and deliciously fruity.

Top Chef NOLA - Ep. #17/Finale Part 2 - 02/05/14 (Spoilers)

Looks like I was right about the review. Nick said he'd give everything up for four bells (the highest rating).


Feb 06, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Food Media & News

Top Chef NOLA - Ep. #17/Finale Part 2 - 02/05/14 (Spoilers)

As a Philly girl and someone who has been to Nick's restaurant, I'm thrilled with the result! But Nina should be very proud - I don't think I've ever seen a result that close before.

I think Padma saying they should judge them on service is BS. You can't put the finale in the hands of strangers. I think Padma had a little too much attitude (and cleavage) this season. I laughed when she left the hotel room with Carlos in her bikini and he said, "This is the best part."

I'm glad I watched WWHL. It was very enlightening. I think Nick looked nervous because Craig LaBan's review (Philadelphia Inquirer) of his restaurant comes out on Sunday. Nick will do ok otherwise, but a great review from LaBan will keep his place booked indefinitely.

Happy hour near the Kimmel?

I think Jose Pistola's has a happy hour deal.

Top Chef NOLA - Ep. #15 - 01/22/14 (Spoilers)

Good interview. I love the video of the mock judges table. See, Nick does have a sense of humor!

Jan 27, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Food Media & News

Laurel, new BYOB on EPx from Top Chef contestant Nicholas Elmi

I think they rotate the fish that they have on there. I know when I went they replaced the ocean trout with dourade, same preparation. Maybe for freshness and availability?

Jan 15, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Top Chef NOLA - Ep. #13 - 01/08/14 (Spoilers)

I was very disappointed in this episode, and with the show designating Nick as the show villain. This isn't The Real World, these are professionals. The audience doesn't need a villain on a show like this! Can't we just watch talented people create on the fly, isn't that enough drama?

And putting Nick on the spot like that was bs, for all the reasons already given on here. I'll admit I'm a bit of a homer bc Nick's restaurant is a block from my house and it's amazing, but I'd say the same about any other chef.

Jan 13, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Food Media & News

Great chicken parm in city? Or great Asian dumplings?

I'm a big fan of Villa di Roma's chicken parm. It's not BYOB but it's good, cheap old school Italian food.

Jan 02, 2014
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Lunchtime Nibble This Wednesday

I'm a big fan of the arugula taco salad at HipCityVeg

Dec 16, 2013
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Craig LaBan's brutal review of Ocean Prime

I know Bucket, I've never seen a weekend food review posted on a Friday afternoon before. And front page on philly.com too.

Dec 13, 2013
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Craig LaBan's brutal review of Ocean Prime

Wow. I think this may be worse than Serafina


Dec 13, 2013
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Best cakes in Center City or South Philly?

I'm an Isgro's girl. Potito's is pretty good too.

Dec 11, 2013
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Top Chef NOLA - Ep. #9 - 12/04/13 (Spoilers)

As a Philly girl, I'm a bit biased towards Nick, so I was so thrilled he won! I don't ever remember seeing a Restaurant Wars kitchen run as smoothly as his did. The editors couldn't even find some minor error to focus on. He should be very proud. And, btw, Laurel is an excellent restaurant :)

Dec 09, 2013
lawgirl3278 in Food Media & News

I just found out one of my favorite restaurants will be on Restaurant Impossible...

I was a fan of Chiarella's in South Philly before they were on Kitchen Nightmares. Thankfully, the place was clean and sanitary. The problem was the menu was too large, outdated and the owner is a bit, well, colorful. They redid the inside and trimmed the menu and it is still very good.

Dec 05, 2013
lawgirl3278 in Food Media & News

Phellow hounds in Philly: please phine-tune my trip….

If you're staying near Liberty Place, you will have to cab it to Le Virtu (South Philly). You will not be rushed there. Food is good, service is a bit slow. While you're down there, walk along Passyunk Avenue - check out the fountain, have a cocktail at Stateside, grab dessert at Fond. You shouldn't have a problem getting a cab back.

Downstairs at Time (13th near Sansom) has some decent live music, but you'd have to check their calendar. Plenty of great places nearby to grab a late bite too (Amis, Sampan, Zavino, Barbuzzo, etc.)

For your light lunch, Federal Donuts is right near the Oyster House. Excellent fried chicken, but not much eat-in space. HipCityVeg is also good for a quick lunch too.

Dec 05, 2013
lawgirl3278 in Philadelphia

Top Chef Nick Elmi's new restaurant Laurel - a review

Good morning all! I posted this in the Philly board but thought the Top Chef fans would be curious

My husband and I ate at Laurel on Friday. It was fantastic. The decor is very soothing and it's not too noisy (the sound cushions on the ceiling and the comfy chairs help!). Service was very friendly and helpful. Here's what we had:

First course
Fluke crudo with asian pear and horseradish sauce - a surprisingly larger portion which 2 can definitely split. The sauce was creamy and complemented the fluke perfectly. This kind of reminded me of Patty's snapper crudo dish she made in this week's episode.

Mache lettuce salad with honey buttermilk dressing - a light, fall salad; a good meal starter

Second course
Ricotta gnocchi with lardo and ricotta salata - this was the star of the night. Bowl of heavenly pillows of pasta with a nice crunch of lardo and croutons. My DH and I fought for the last bite!

Third course
Pork with chanterelles - I only had a couple of bites, but it was cooked perfectly

Dourade with parsnips and burgundy snails - beautiful white, flaky fish with crispy skin. I'm not a big fan of snails, but if you like them, these weren't rubbery or chewy

Fourth course
White chocolate mousse with chocolate cookie crumbles - very nice, light ending to the meal

I will definitely be back. I thought Chef Elmi had a knack for mixing textures, (like adding a bit a crunch to softer dishes) which I liked very much. All the flavors were well balanced.

Chef Elmi was food running a bit throughout the night. He is charming and adorable :) I told him we were happy to have him in the neighborhood.

Umami and MSG: what's in a name?

I know that many people may have misconceptions on what their food sensitivity is, but after years of "process of elimination", I have concluded that MSG is a migraine trigger for me. I wish it wasn't, but I have had reactions to the following foods:

certain chinese food
processed soups, gravies, etc.
flavored chips and snacks
some mushrooms
some aged cheeses

Within 15-20 minutes of eating any of those, I feel flush and uncomfortable, with a headache to follow. The only common ingredient in all of those was MSG. So while there may studies debunking the allergy, there truly are people out there who have a sensitivity to it.