A day in a Philadelphia


We had a lovely day in Philly back in June. The day started off with rain but by the time we were in the city, the rain had stopped. It was a bit overcast but that was okay. Our first stop was lunch at Delassandro’s for a couple of Philly cheese steak sandwiches.

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The clouds cleared and the sun was shining when we arrived at our next destination, the Philadelphia Zoo. It’s not as big as the Bronx Zoo but it was still very enjoyable. The modest size certainly made for a more intimate viewing of the animals. We were also visiting on a Monday so it wasn’t too crowded either. One thing they have that the Bronx Zoo doesn’t have are the travel tubes that allow for certain animals to walk around the park like the tigers and some primates.

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Then we went to the Barnes Foundation, an art museum featuring one man’s private collection of art that included masters, ethnic art, and local folk art. It was really quite an impressive collection. What is even more interesting is the controversy that surrounds the collection and the museum. The museum was designed by New York based architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien. TH and I have an appreciation for art and architecture and the Barnes Foundation satisfied our interests.

We had a bit of time before dinner so we were going to pop into a bar for a pint but noticed The Oyster House, and decided we’d rather have cocktails and oysters.

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The Last Word cocktail. Ask the bartender to make it for you.

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We ordered additional oysters and found that we really enjoyed the sweetness of the Shibumi oyster.

I had made dinner reservations at a vegetarian restaurant called Vedge. Both Thomas and I are omnivores but we wanted to indulge on an exquisite meal that was free of meat. We learned about Vedge from a cookbook of the same name and authored by the chef. The gorgeous photos of plated veggie dishes were mouth-watering and the descriptions were inspiring. TH was intrigued by the list of ingredients and cooking instructions. Could something that contained no meat be as fulfilling?

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Vedge: a selections of table shares. (Top) U-peel Lupini Beans, piri piri, and fried garlic. (Center) Smoked new pickles. (Bottom) Curry pickled cauliflower.

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Vedge: Fancy Radishes: shishito pepper, avocado, pickled tofu, smoked tamari.

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Vedge: Salt roasted Gold Beets with avocado, smoked tofu, rye, capers, and creamy cucumber sauce.

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Vedge: Portabella carpaccio with pickled. eggplant, caper puree, and migella grissini

Vedge: Grilled Seaitan with swiss chard, whipped tahini, pickled turnips, and za'atar.

Vedge: Grilled Seaitan with swiss chard, whipped tahini, pickled turnips, and za’atar.

Vedge: Spicy griled tofu with gochujang, edamame, smoked miso, and yuba cracklin.

Vedge: Spicy griled tofu with gochujang, edamame, smoked miso, and yuba cracklin.

Vedge: Roasted maitake and trumpet mushrooms with celery root fritter

Vedge: Roasted maitake and trumpet mushrooms with celery root fritter

Vedge: Nebrodini Mushrooms as "fazzoletti", basil, charred tomato

Vedge: Nebrodini Mushrooms as “fazzoletti”, basil, charred tomato

Vedge: Brussel sprouts shaved and grilled, with smoked mustard

Vedge: Brussel sprouts shaved and grilled, with smoked mustard

Vedge: Homemade donuts filled with homemade cherry jam

Vedge: Homemade donuts filled with homemade cherry jam

The answer is, yes. We ordered several dishes to share probably more than we should have. We ended up taking home what we couldn’t finish. All the dishes were appetizing. We did not miss having any meat at all.

And although we had dessert at Vedge. A trip to Philadelphia is never complete without a stop at Capogiro for some artisanal gelato.

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