Category Archives: Local

Class Recap: All Day in the Southern Kitchen with June Allan


Adam and Shelly Zensinger stopped by COOK to give us the not-so-skinny on lowcountry cuisine, the focus of their catering company, June Allan.

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Shop Your Favorite Philly Brands at COOK!


Enjoy the finer things this Spring while also supporting local business! Stop in to shop our pantry, where you’ll find some of our favorite local items from Green Aisle Grocery, Girls Can Tell, Fresh Artists and Side Project Jerky. Perhaps you’ll even find a good read from the local section of our extensive cookbook collection!

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Recipe: Delicious Brunch Cocktails from Brick & Mortar


This past Saturday afternoon, our friends at Brick & Mortar came in to celebrate Philly’s favorite weekend past-time – Brunch! Special thanks to Christina Rando, who provided us with some libations that were just as delicious as they were beautiful.

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RECIPE: Festive Chocolate Eggs for Easter!


Hard-boiled eggs aren’t your gig this Easter Sunday? This Easter,  swap out the egg dying for a sweeter festive snack – chocolate peanut butter eggs. You’ll have just as much fun making them as you will eating them! R2L’s resident pastry chef, Peter Scarola, stopped in earlier this week to show us how it’s done.

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The Art of Phyllo Dough with Frances Vavloukis, Health and Wellness Coach


Frances Vavloukis stopped by our kitchen last Wednesday, March 9th to talk with us about all things Greek.

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The IACP Nominations Are In At COOK!


And the nominees are… On the shelves at COOK! This month we have stocked our shelves with the cream of the crop. Come in and check out the nominees for the year’s best cookbooks as chosen by the International Association of Culinary Professionals.

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On Thursday, April 16, join Rittenhouse Row for the 2015 Spring Festival Preview Party, featuring cuisine from Rittenhouse Row’s best restaurants, cocktails from their best bartenders, informal modeling of Spring trends from Rittenhouse Row member boutiques and salons, and a silent auction with Rittenhouse Row experiences and merchandise.

Participating bars and restaurants include: 1925 Cocktail Lounge, a. Bar, a. Kitchen, Ben & Jerry’s, Butcher and Singer, The Continental Mid-town, The Dandelion, D’Angelo’s Ristorante Italiano and Lounge, Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse, Devon Seafood Grill, The Foodery at Rittenhouse, Lacroix, Ladder 15, Library Bar, Marathon Grill, Melograno, Parc, Qdoba, Ranstead Room, Rouge, Sbraga, Termini Bros. Bakery, Volver, Zama and more.

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Welcome to the Neigh-BEER-hood, 2nd Story Brewing Company!

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(2nd Story Brewing Company (from left):  General Manager Ken Merriman,
Owner Debbie Grady, Executive Chef Rebecca Krebs and Head Brewer John Wible)

Today Eater posted a story about Brooklyn Brewery brewmaster Garrett Oliver’s response to ramen messiah David Chang’s recent GQ story detailing Chang’s preference for shitty beer (Bud Light?!? Come on, dude!). And despite my love for Miller High Life (sorry but it’s true!) I thought I’d give our city’s growing and beautiful craft beer scene a shout out.

On Tuesday, October 21Brewer John Wible will debut a new collection of classically inspired and approachable ales and lagers at 2nd Story Brewing Co. (117 Chestnut Street), a craft brewery and restaurant serving farm-to-table pub cuisine in a casually rustic environment.  Owner Debbie Grady, along with General Manager Ken Merriman and Executive Chef Rebecca Krebs, will work closely with local producers and purveyors to bring in regional, seasonal ingredients.  Together, the 2nd Story team will operate a new craft-centric brewpub where residents and visitors alike can relax, grab a delicious bite and sip a fresh-hopped beer in the city’s historic Old City neighborhood.

The 2nd Story team is comprised of an eclectic mix of personalities with varying backgrounds, all sharing a tremendous enthusiasm for great craft beer and locally-sourced food:  Grady, a working farmer who grew up in Pasadena, California and owns Tilted Barn Farm in Pottstown, PA, will lead the project;  Merriman, a skilled manager and restaurateur who owns District Riverton Bistro in Riverton, NJ – and previously served as general manager and partner at Center City’s enduring Irish bar Tir na Nog — will oversee the overall operations of the restaurant and brewery, while adding his worldly insight having grown up in Dublin, Ireland;  Krebs, former Executive Chef at Salt Air in Rehoboth Beach, DE, will bring 10 years of culinary experience, specifically focusing on local ingredients and seasonal flavors;  and Wible, a former IT professional turned award-winning home brewer, will turn 2nd Story into his personal beer laboratory, exploring both classic and contemporary styles with a strong focus on simple, fresh beers that are interesting yet easy to drink.

Sitting in the space once occupied by Triumph Brewing Company, the restaurant and brewery has been re-imagined by the 2nd Story team, peeling back the building’s original, historic roots with beautiful exposed brick walls, wood floors and steel beams.  The space will feature two floors of seating, each with a bar area and five different dining areas with ample room for more than 200 guests.  The brewpub will offer a tempting menu of ingredient-driven American fare, a full bar with cocktails, wine and bottled beers as well as the selection of fine beers produced on site.  Both the kitchen and the brewery will use only the freshest ingredients, sourcing custom-grown hops from Grady’s Tilted Barn Farm.

The heartbeat of 2nd Story will pulse loudly on the second floor, where guests can rest comfortably at the copper-topped bar while watching Wible brew a fresh batch of lager from the brewery’s 15-bbl brewing system.  His extensive draft list will feature four distinctive house beers and five rotating taps, with one cask engine, and seasonal favorites such as Great Harvest Pumpkin Ale andColonial Porter on draught, as well as a thoughtful cocktail menu and dedicated list of favorite domestic bottles and even ciders for the non-craft beer lovers.  In addition, there will be an upstairs fireplace and beer garden, accented with salvaged oak and nostalgic photos of iconic Philadelphia breweries.

“Our region is so rich in history and resources, and we can’t wait to put them to use at 2nd Story,” says Grady.  Adds Wible, “This will be the kind of place guests can visit again and again, for a quick pint and engaging conversation among friends.”

For more information, please visit their website at 2nd Story Brewing, follow the brewery on Twitter (@2ndStoryBrewing) and Brewer John Wible (@BrewerWible), Instagram (2ndstorybrewing) and “like” them on Facebook.

Cheers, 2nd Story! Welcome to the neigh-BEER-hood!




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Gourd Yourself – It’s Squash Season!


It’s pumpkin spice latte freak-out season and we at COOK have a bit of the ol’ seasonal squash bug too. In fact, this time of year gets us so squashy that we scheduled a class this month dedicated entirely to winter squash and there are still a few seats left.

This month’s edition of “Meatless Monday” with Beth Kaufman of A Mindful Me will take place on October 20 and features a 4-course vegetarian feast featuring winter squash in all its glory.  Don’t let the name fool you – winter squash are sneaking their way into grocery stores and farmers markets now as part of the fall harvest. Butternut, Spaghetti, Kabocha, Sweet Dumpling, Buttercup and the very popular Sweet Pumpkin are in season and many will be highlighted on the menu. During class, Beth will share the health-supportive elements of winter squash and how to prepare them so you’re left feeling full and satisfied.

To get you more in the winter squash zone, Bon Appetit just published a piece about cooking squash titled “5 Common Squash Mistakes, and How to Avoid Them”.  May the gourds be with you!

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Philly’s Puentes de Salud Featured In The New York Times


The team at COOK was incredibly excited to see this excellent feature about Philadelphia’s Puentes de Salud in the January 20 edition of The New York TimesSupported by the Philly chef community, Dr. Steve Larson‘s non-profit organization provides high-quality medical care to our city’s undocumented and uninsured Latino immigrants, many of whom work within the restaurant industry.

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