You know what I'm craving? A little perspective. That's it. I'd like some fresh, clear, well seasoned perspective. Can you suggest a good wine to go with that? --Ratatouille (Pixar, 2007)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Fogo de Chao (Philadelphia, PA)

Recently, I had the pleasure of eating at a restaurant unlike any other that I've been to, Fogo de Chao. A true Brazilian steakhouse, Fogo is a most unique dining experience that you really can't get anywhere else. The basic premise is that you sit at a table, and are served endlessly from a selection of over ten meats, all roasted on a spit in the kitchen. If you want to hear more about the service, visit their website @
From the outside, Fogo's three part dinner service seems pretty simple. However, it's much more complex than you could ever imagine.
When you sit down for the first time, you'll be offered the salad bar. Consisting of endless vegetables, multiple pasta/potato/salads, aged cheeses (including a mammoth wheel of aged parmesan), as well as a selection of meats and smoked salmon, the salad bar is not to be overlooked. However, one must keep in mind the meat course (2nd course) is still to come when you're up there selecting your salad items. You wouldn't want to finish eating your raw vegetables, become full, and then not have room for the lamb chops walking around.
Now what about those lamb chops walking around? Well here is where Fogo de Chao separates itself from any other steakhouse you've ever attended. When you decide to begin your meat course (signaled by flipping your given Fogo De Chao two sided token from red to green) men with various accents and cuts of meat will begin to come to your table and offer you any one of their bites. From Filet Mignon, to ribs, to chicken, to flank steak, to pork loin and anywhere in between, you might find it hard to pace yourself. Speaking of pacing myself,within mere minutes of flipping my plate looked as it does below
Now you may be saying, "THERE ARE THINGS OTHER THAN MEAT ON HIS PLATE. WHAT?" Well the next part of the meal that goes along with the meats is the group of endless side dishes that are served. Warm bread, crispy polenta, caramelized bananas (essentially fried plantain imposters), and garlic mashed potatoes are all brought to your table and refilled as needed. These are the weakest part of the meal, but hey, you didn't come for mashed potatoes. Pictured below is the polenta (the best of the side dishes).

But back to the meats. Overall the meats were somewhere from good to great. The draw of Fogo shouldn't be eating the best steak you've ever tasted, rather the most variety and in the most interesting way. If you truly want the best filet mignon, go to the best steakhouse in Philadelphia and order solely the steak. However, if you want a delicious filet, a taste of a rib, a bite of sausage, etc, Fogo is your best bet (and one of the only places that could supply you that as well). The most truly delicious steak on the menu, as a consensus of my whole party, was what they called the "house special," colloquially known as a top sirloin, and it out shined every other piece of meat I ate that night. As pictured below on the spit, it truly wowed me and made me want to just keep eating and eating.

Finally, we got to ordering dessert. On most dinners I'd say dessert at Fogo de Chao is like a leprechaun at a Bar Mitzvah in Lower Merion--not often spotted and if spotted, kind of uncalled for. However, it was my 16th birthday dinner, so dessert seemed fitting. I got what the restaurant praised to be their most requested dessert, the papaya cream (below). It was truly the best ending to the meal, a smooth, creamy, refreshing bite at the end of a mostly heavy, hearty meal. My friend got the molten chocolate cake as per suggestion by our hipster young male waiter, and it did not disappoint either. However, twas the polar opposite of the papaya cream. (picture further below.)

Overall, I'd say Fogo de Chao is an interesting culinary experience for anyone that likes to eat or likes to taste good food. If you can bear the stiff price tag, Fogo's a one of a kind dine.
Rating: 4.5/5 stars

Check out more about Fogo at their website:

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Chiapparelli's (Baltimore, MD)

The other night, I found myself in a pickle. My family and I were driving home from visiting family in Potomac, MD, and the day was growing old quickly. It was getting later and later, and we had not eaten anything since much earlier in the day. We were all hungry but had no idea where to stop for dinner on the trek back home. My dad had a spur of the moment nostalgic thought about an old Italian restaurant he had once went to in Baltimore's Little Italy. I tried my best to put it into Google on my phone, and somehow it knew where I was going with my guess--and we set out a path to get to a restaurant called "Chiapparelli's."
As you enter the threshold of Chiapparelli's, a warm, embracing air greets you at the door. You'll most likely be sat by a representative of the very experienced, helpfully accommodating waitstaff. The menu is typical of any traditional Italian based menu, offering a large selection of pastas along with a few meat and fish dishes as well. You can see the whole menu here > .
To start the meal, we ordered a few appetizers. Arancine, a classic Italian dish that is made of rice balls that are creamed with cheese and fried, along with the another traditional dish of Italian sausage that Chiapparelli's gets from a local butcher stood out. Below is the Sausage and peppers--because it was short notice that we were going to Chiapparelli's, I had to take the pictures on my phone and thus they don't look quite as good as the food really did in real life :(

It only got better from there. For the main course I had the "Drooling Gnocchi," (pictured below) which was absolutely delicious. Chiapparelli's has been making homemade gnocchi almost as long as they've been in business--over 70 years. Creamy, cheesy and delicious, a great dish.

My sister, always the adventurous one, (...) had the spaghetti and meatballs. Apparently it was great, despite being "So much I just can't finish it!!!" (below)

Bottom Line:All in all, I can't say enough about Chiapparelli's, a delicious stop on any trip to or passing by Baltimore.
Rating: 4/5 Stars

You can find out more about Chiapparelli's at their website--

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Putting a spin on a classic--Pumpkin Cheesecake

Hey Guys!
Back with another quality recipe in the hopes that it'll help you out in the upcoming holiday season.
Thanksgiving is quickly approaching. While it's a great holiday for anyone, Thanksgiving can be an even better holiday for a chef. Since it centers mainly around the family dinner, Thanksgiving is a great place to show off any new recipes you have. In the interest of bettering your Thanksgiving spread, I'll show you how I put a spin on my grandma's classic cheesecake recipe.
As usual in the fall season, the addition of pumpkin flavor into everything edible seems to be ubiquitous with everything culinary related. Not that I like to jump on the bandwagon newest recipe is for a pumpkin cheesecake. My changes to the original cheesecake recipe are simple and easy, but yield a tasty result. My new recipe is as follows:

16 oz Cream Cheese (2 8 oz packs)
2/3 cup sugar
2 eggs
4 Tsp Lemon Juice
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
1 Cup of canned pumpkin (NOT PUMPKIN PIE FILLING)

NOTE: You may want to double or multiply this by 1.5 just because your batter won't quite fill all the way to the top and since cheesecake doesn't rise, you may want a little more batter just to get a full, large cake

Graham cracker crumbs
4 oz (1/2 stick) of butter

The recipe is simple--Beat the cream cheese in a mixer until fluffy. Then, one by one, add in all of the other ingredients except the pumpkin and mix thoroughly. Finally, add in the cup of pumpkin, stirring whilst adding it in. Hopefully your batter will look something like this:

Now here's the catch. While you COULD make this batter into a normal cheesecake, I prefer to do it my own way--cupcakes. The newest big fad, cupcakes are becoming more attractive than large cakes just because they allow you to eat something nice and rich but not overdo it. Thus, a dense dessert like cheesecake does very well with cupcakes.
The final step before baking you cakes is the crust. Combine your crumbs with the melted butter and simply press your crumbs into the bottom of your cupcake tins like so:

Once your tins are prepped, pour batter into tins until they are filled most of the way-- cupcakes won't rise very much, they're cheesecake remember?

Once they're all ready to go, bake them in the oven for 15 minutes at 375, or until they appear to be solid and dry/no moving batter.
Good luck and I hope they turn out as good as mine!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

A Very Sad Day in Chefville

Hey guys,
All is not well these days in Chez Scolnic.
In the interest of having a good time cooking and having fun in the kitchen with my friend Elyse Roat. We attempted a usually simple and delightful recipe and ended up making it more difficult than necessary for ourselves. Elyse and I set out to make a caramel apple tart. Seems easy enough--right? WRONG.
Now that's not to say this recipe isn't a good one to use and one that can be very successful, it's just there were two mistakes that could have been easily avoided had we been a little bit more careful. In the interest of letting all of you--my favorite readers--succeed, I'll give you the recipe the correctED way, so that you don't make the same mistakes I did.
First-- The crust of the apple tart, or any good tart for that matter, should always be (in my opinion) a pate sucree. A deliciously crisp, sugar cookie-like crust, pate sucree is not only the best tasting but also the easiest tart crust to make and assemble. Ingredients are as follows:

2 C flour
.5 C sugar
5 Oz chilled unsalted butter, cut into pats about 1/2 oz thick.
1 full egg
2 egg YOLKS (beaten together)
1 TBSP Milk
A Pinch of Salt

While this recipe can be done by hand, or in a bowl, ideally, I always do it in a food processor. Combine all of your dries (flour, sugar, salt) in the processor. Add in the cut pats of butter and pulse the processor until combined. In a separate bowl, beat the egg along with the yolks and combine with the milk. Then, pour that mixture in with the dries and pules until moist. Finally, you can take your mixture out, and by hand (as shown below) press your crust into a tart pan by small increments.

Once you have your whole mixture pressed in, put the pate sucree in by itself to bake for 10-16 minutes (until JUST LIGHTLY golden brown) before even putting anything into it.

Next comes the filling. While the pate is in the oven, peel and slice 4-6 red delicious apples (amount varying on size). You want to cut them as thinly and uniformly as possible in order to ensure the most efficient and effective baking time possible. Try to cut each apple slice at about 1/8 an inch thick. When you're done slicing, put all of the apples in a bowl and coat them generously in cinnamon and nutmeg. Next--A PART THAT WAS FORGOTTEN IN MY TRIAL. Add in about a quarter cup of brown sugar to your apple mixture. If you don't have any sugar, your apples will end up overly dry when cooked. However, the sugar will melt into a nice sauce to keep everything moist and delicious instead of shriveled and gross. Notice how my apples are just a bit dry in the picture below (After cooking for 8-12 minutes).

The last part of the recipe was the hardest part--and the only part I can truly say Elyse and I really messed up--well it was really just me messing it up. Caramels are hard..and are pretty dangerous. Brushing the border between scalding sugar and burning it, it's never easy to decide when to transition with your caramel or stir it, or stop for that matter. However, I'll do my best to help you make the best caramel possible.

1 Cup of White Sugar
.5 Cup Water
6 TBSP of Salted Butter
.5 Cup heavy cream

The most important thing about making a caramel is having all of your ingredients ready to be put into the pot. Making caramel is a fast process and you won't have time to stop to measure anything out or top off any cups, all ingredients need to be ready to go or something will burn while you aren't looking.
First, combine the water and sugar in a tall sauce pan (2-3 qts in maximum holding value). Stir mixture continuously as the sugar water begins to boil and the water begins to evaporate. As the sugar mixture turns brown, stir in butter until it melts. Once the butter melts, take your pan off the heat immediately and say "O-N-E Mississippi." Right after that last i, whisk in the heavy cream. Odds are, your caramel may foam up, but keep whisking and it will eventually relax and start to look like a real caramel. *Disclaimer-- IT WONT LOOK LIKE OUR MESS-UPS BELOW. WE DID MANY THINGS WRONG. YOU MIGHT NEED TO TRY YOUR CARAMEL A FEW TIMES BEFORE YOU GET IT RIGHT! ITS ALL NATURAL.

Drizzle caramel over apple tart and let cool and harden.

You just made a caramel apple tart. WHADDUP!
Credits to--
The Restaurant School at Walnut Hill for teaching me how to make the best Pate Sucree when I came to their cooking camp at age 10--I've never forgotten how!
New York Times Hipster Food Section--The bad caramel mishap came out of one of their recipes--this is a revised version, with more clear instructions as to ensure less room for error.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Original Recipe--APPLE STRUDEL TIME!

Hey guys--
So today I tried something that is almost totally foreign to me, but way more fun than anything else in the whole area of cooking. The new concept I experimented with is simple. You take a recipe, look at it, then throw it out the window. The only rule to my process is that you should probably consider only using this technique when you are cooking with ingredients that you are familiar with. For me it was easy. Reason why--Everything I used in this recipe I had dealt with before.

That being said--the recipe I'm going to give to you looks a little tough from the gitgo. The two main aspects of a good apple strudel are the filling and the phyllo dough crust. While you may know how to make a good filling easily, the part that could trip up most chefs is working with the phyllo dough. The paper thin dough has good days and bad. However, when you keep trying to pry apart your dough and it continually rips and creases, it wont matter how brilliant filling is if there's nothing to put it in.

However if you are having trouble with your phyllo, have no fear I do have a few solid tips for you to be aware of. First, as you can see below, whenever working with phyllo you should keep whatever portion of it you aren't currently using covered with a damp towel or cloth. That way the dough won't dry out or flake when you try to use it later. Secondly, never get to excited--working with it takes time and patience. If you try to move too fast when working with it you'll just rip every sheet you try to lay out. The last thing about phyllo is that no matter what your recipe says, you might not be able to pry each individually layer apart separately and might need to lay out your layers by twos or even threes of phyllo. It's better to have a little much phyllo than to have one dinky ripped layer.

Alright--enough talk. So the recipe. There is a lot of room for movement and alterations, because this was basically just made up in my head while I was cooking. Thankfully my batch turned out delicious.

About 2 pounds of 'red delicious' apples (4-8 apples depending on size)
1 and 1/2 cups of light brown sugar
1/4 cup of white granulated sugar
1 tablespoon of cinnamon
1/2 of a tablespoon of nutmeg
1 tablespoon of honey
8 tablespoons (a stick) of butter.

Phyllo Dough stuff/Things for assembly of strudel--
A package of phyllo dough from the store (nobody makes their own phyllo lets be honest)
1 stick or more of melted butter
Pastry brush to brush said butter onto said phyllo
A small amount of crushed graham crackers
Raisins or dried cranberries (optional)
Diced and toasted Hazelnuts or Almonds or both. (optional)

First before even looking at the dough, you should get your filling in order because it'll need to cook. Heat up a relatively deep pan on your stove top with the stick of butter cut into pats melting in it and leave it all on medium heat. While that gets warm, peel all of your apples and cut into thin slices <1/4 inch thick. The thinner the slices are, the quicker they'll get done and the less likely someone will be to run into a crunchy piece of apple in your strudel. As your butter finishes melting, stir in the brown sugar. Important: reduce your heat marginally at this point, brown sugar and butter burns easily. If it burns, you might as well start all over because everything will just taste like burn from that point on. In addition to reducing the heat, keep stirring the sugar because if it stays too stationary it could burn as well. Next add in the apples to the melted brown sugar, stirring them until they're coated with the mixture. Here's them moment where you really get to make choices. You can choose to add or not any of these ingredients in larger or smaller quantities based on how your mixture is looking. If it's already really sweet--don't add the white sugar! Not all of it is necessary, most is based on taste preference. Add in the Cinnamon and Nutmeg, followed by the white sugar. Stir through. Lastly drizzle the honey in and stir. Put a top on the mixture and reduce the heat to low and let it simmer.

As this is going melt the butter for the phyllo in a separate saucepan.
Let the apples cook for anywhere from 8-20 minutes depending on how thick your apple slices are, stirring every few minutes or so. Once the apples are bendable and soft they are done. Strain the apples out of the liquid mixture and put them in a bowl.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Now you're on to the assembly. Make sure you have a clean, good surface to work on, and then you can start by unrolling out your packaged phyllo and taking your first two sheets of phyllo off the top slowly and putting them on the surface.
Brush the top with butter and sprinkle a small amount of the graham cracker crumbs on. Next take two more sheets and place them on top of that and spread brush more butter on.
Now you're going to want to spoon out a little bit of your apple mixture to one side of your phyllo like so:
Sprinkle your optional ingredients on top of the apples along with a little more of the graham cracker crumbs to soak up any extra liquid so the strudels won't get soggy. This formation for the apples ensures your rolling of the strudel to be successful.
Finally, roll up your strudel in a burrito like fashion shown in the picture below.
Place your rolled strudel on the baking sheet that has parchment paper on it or is greased seam side down and garnish as you will with the dried fruit from the inside or just graham cracker crumbs and butter. Repeat this process and make as many strudels as you have phyllo and apples for. The more the merrier!
Bake for 12-18 minutes or until the tips of the phyllo are golden brown.

These looked better in person..the light here was shifty so i had to use a flash.

Yay no websites to credit because this recipe is all mine.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Karibu--Capetown, South Africa.

Hey Guys
Sorry I haven't posted in a while, but I was still working with food--don't worry. I recently took a trip to South Africa with my family. No, I wasn't building houses for the poor, I was visiting the cities and plains the country had to offer. While I was there, I tasted some pretty amazing food that I am semi-positive I'll never get to eat again for a while.
The first night spent in Africa, we went to a restaurant called "Karibu" in Capetown. Though it was only my first meal there, it would turn out to be the best one. It was most exciting because I tasted four different foods for the first time. Below is a picture of my appetizer, a crocodile carpaccio. I'm not usually one for carpaccios, but I figured if I had the opportunity to taste crocodile, it might be my only chance--so I pretty much had to have a try. Sadly, the taste of crocodile isn't really anything special. It tastes mostly like smokehouse deli turkey you could buy in the supermarket. However, I'm not one to say Karibu did a good or bad job on the crocodile because it was the first and only plate of it I have ever tasted. Later on when I told some natives I had eaten it, most of them had similar reactions. "Crocodile is only as good as the sauce it's served in."

The next dish I had was a plate of three different types of venison medallions. If you didn't know, venison is any meat classified as being hunted from a deer. However, the deer in Africa aren't quite the same as the ones we have in the USA. I had a trio of springbok, eland, and impala. Unlike crocodile, I have had venison before--just not this kind of venison. After eating it I can say I was more than satisfied with this part of the meal than I could've ever expected. Each piece of meat had it's own specific taste and texture. They were all unique, and delicious in their own way. Below is a picture of them--

The final dish I had at Karibu was a desert called "Hertzoggies." They were two miniature apricot tarts with coconut and cream on top. They were so delicious I forgot to take a picture until I was halfway through. Oh, and they were served like any other good desert...with ice cream.

Bottom Line: If you're in South Africa and wish to eat what you could only eat in South Africa, Karibu is a must. Oh, and make reservations to sit outside overlooking the waterfront if the weather is nice.
RATING: 4.25/5 stars

More info on Karibu available at:

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Eatery (NY, NY)

Hey Guys!
Last Sunday I went to New York, New York to visit my older brother Michael who lives in Queens. As you may know, NYC is a prolific city when it comes to food and food history and is also the home to some of the finest restaurants in the world. While there are many five star restaurants and fancy dines in the city, today I'd like to tell you about a cute little restaurant that isn't too cheap and isn't too expensive either, but will give you exactly what you want if you're looking for a great BRUNCH. When my family and I decided to go Eatery in NYC, all we wanted was a good brunch and that is exactly what we got.
For my brunch I ordered their "e-benne," a new age version of an old classic, eggs benedict. Pictured below, the e-benne is two poached eggs on top of a potato-vegetable pancake, with you choice of ham or smoked salmon, and a chili hollandaise on top of all of it. This dish is technically perfect, and all the ingredients are fresh and delicious. The hollandaise is a little bit spicy, but it helps bring out all the flavors in the veggie pancake, which in turn soaks up the runny yolk from the poached egg.

My sister ordered the house pancakes, which are a special that change daily. That day, they were coconut walnut pancakes that are pictured below. While they don't look like they have all that much coconut on or in them, the one thing that you can't see is the flavor. When you bite into a piece of the fluffy pancake, coconut flavor bursts throughout your mouth. Behind it is a subtle flavor of walnuts that hides in your palette just waiting to be savored. The flavor is second to none, and the pancakes are just fine and fluffy.

Bottom Line:If you're looking for a great meal on a random morning in New York, head over to Eatery. However, get there early or make reservations because there might be a wait. Even if there is, stay around and wait, because it'll be worth your time.
RATING:3.75/5 Stars

For more about Eatery, head to their website at

Friday, August 12, 2011

Recipe: Peanut Butter, Chocolate & Jessie

Hey Guys!
So today is the first recipe/experience post rather than restaurant review.
This Sunday is my older sister Jessie's birthday, so I decided to make a cooler, more exciting cake than usual. A few weeks ago she requested a cake she had found online, a peanut butter chocolate cake that looked beyond delicious. The recipe was a little tough and called for some ingredients I didn't have in my kitchen, but after a run to the supermarket and stringing on an apron, I got to work. Thankfully, as you can see by the picture, everything turned out great. Also with the pictures of the cake is a picture of a cupcake of the cake I made with extra batter. The recipe for this delicious looking (and tasting!) cake is below.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Layer Cake

1 3/4 cup sugar
1 cup butter, softened
2 tsp vanilla
2 large eggs plus 2 large egg whites
2 1/2 cups cake flour
1 cup Dutch-processed cocoa
2 tsp espresso powder
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 1/4 cups buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray cake pans with cooking spray and flour generously.

Cream butter, sugar and vanilla with mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Scrape down bowl and beaters.

In a separate bowl combine flour, cocoa, espresso powder, baking soda and salt. Beat into creamed mixture alternating with the buttermilk. Scrape down bowl and beaters and continue mixing on medium speed for one minute. Pour into prepared pans.

Bake for 28-30 minutes and until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. This actually ended up being about 35 minutes in my oven with the 6"x2" pans.

Remove from oven and cool for 15 minutes before removing from pans to cool completely on cooling rack. You may have trouble getting the cakes out of the pans, but remember to scrape a knife around the edge of the rounds and loosen them up before trying to de-pan the cakes.

Peanut Butter Filling (the best part)

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
1/2 cup marshmallow creme (Fluff)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup heavy cream, chilled
Pinch salt

Mix all of the filling ingredients together with a mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scraping down the bowl as necessary.

NOTE: I used the frosting for both the inside of my two layers of cake as well as the sides. I think it gives it a peanut buttery good taste to have it on the sides and makes the cake all around better. If you want a plainer cake, you can just use the peanut butter in the middle of the layers.

Chocolate Ganache

1 1/3 cups (8 ounces) chocolate chips or chopped semisweet chocolate
1/2 cup heavy or whipping cream
2 tablespoons light corn syrup

Combine the above in a microwave safe bowl and heat in 15-20 second increments until cream is hot enough to melt the chocolate. Stir until chocolate is melted and ganache is smooth.
While still warm, drizzle the chocolate on top of the cake. Make sure you have a plate under the cake so that all the chocolate doesn't drip on the ground, but let it drip down the sides of the cake and on to the plate. As soon as you are done drizzling the ganache, put the cake in the fridge so it can solidify.

Ease of Recipe--6 on a scale of 1-10, 1 being easiest and 10 being hardest.

credits to for the chocolate cake and pb icing recipe, and to King Arthur Flour Co. For the ganache recipe! Thanks for helping me build my recipe and interpret yours!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Buddakan (Phil, PA)

"So if you like cooking so much...what's your favorite restaurant?"
I get asked a lot of questions by my friends when they hear that I'm interested in cooking. What I'm gonna pursue as a career, what is my favorite food, or what kind of cuisine I enjoy cooking most. After tonight, the one question I could answer at the tip of a hat is, "What's your favorite restaurant?"
I had been to Buddakan in Philadelphia on one prior occasion, however I had only been for lunch, not dinner. Combining outstanding food, service, and atmosphere, Buddakan has the total package. From the moment we stepped in and looked at the menu, I knew the meal would be perfect. For an appetizer, I had the Tea Smoked Short Ribs. The ribs were far and above the best part of my meal. They were dripping in a flavorful hoisin-based sauce, and the meat fell off the bone before it could even melt in your mouth.
For my entree I sampled the five spice duck breast. Layed out like it was the peace offering from the kitchen it was, limitless slices of duck cut as thinly as a size zero America's Next Top Model greeted me with open arms and a delicious five spice jus. No matter how good the meat was, the side dish might have been the best part. On the menu it is described as a spoon bread. Though one might see "Bread" and be convinced of a cracker or toasted crustini, a spoon bread is actually something different. Closer to a polenta or pudding, the scallion and corn spoon bread served with the five spice duck was one of the best things i've ever eaten. Creamy, light, and flavorful, the spoon bread was a delicious bite in the midst of all the surprisingly lean duck.
Finally for dessert I tasted the Milk Chocolate Carmel Tart. Though it may have been the weak point of the meal, the tart was still delicious. Covered in warm carmel, the crunchy chocolate crisp was a little bit crumbly for my liking. However the warm carmel and jasmine vanilla ice cream was enough to satisfy me after a long, delicious meal.
After two visits, I can confidently say that Buddakan is my favorite restaurant that I have ever eaten at. Below are other notes on dishes that I have tasted from Buddakan that weren't a part of my three courses tonight:
Tuna Pizza--I don't usually go for carpaccio, but this one is delicious. The tuna is flavored better than most carpaccios I have tasted and is topped with pickled jalepenos that will set your tastebuds aflame.
Vietnamese Crepe--A simple, tastey appetizer that tastes a little much of shrimp. However, still a good dish if you're a shrimp fan.
Wok Charred Brussels Sprouts--A heaping bowl full of well spiced sprouts, a simple side dish to complement any good meal at Buddakan.
Vegetable Dumpings--The vegetable dumpings at Buddakan might be the only dish I truly don't like. They are filled with few ingredients, one of which is corn. Because of that, the corn overpowers the dumpling and the dumpling really only tastes of corn.
Kobe Beef Sliders (lunch only)--One of the most delicious things at Buddakan. Possibly the most tender, beautiful pieces of burger meat I've ever tasted. You know food is good when you can picture yourself eating it all day long without stopping and that is what I did with these sliders.
"Dip Sum" Doughnuts--The specialty of the restaurant, and here is why. If you're going to serve doughnuts at a high class restaurant, they better be good. They might want to be fried perfectly, dipped in delicious sugars, and served with two luscious sauces. That's exactly how it goes down at Buddakan. 5 amazing, round doughnuts came out with a blackberry jam and a warm chocolate sauce. They're the perfect end to your meal at Buddakan.

Bottom Line--Buddakan is my favorite restaurant. One of the top in Philadelphia, and a must go to before you finish your last bite.

Rating: 5/5 Stars

Check out more about Buddakan Philly at

Who I am

This isn't just any food blog.
Born and being raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, I've been cooking and eating ever since I could ask my mom to pass the salt. My palette seems much older than much age, which is but fifteen years old. I ate an elk steak before I could do my multiplication tables, and I knew how to properly dry rub a sirloin before I could tell you what the propane lighting my grill actually was.
Because I am so young, most would call my credibility into question. However, I spent 3 summers of my teen years at The Restaurant School at Walnut Hill Culinary College in Philadelphia. I studied with chefs who knew their stuff. From one who worked at the Union Square Cafe in NYC to another that has one three different James Beard awards, including two best dinner awards. Though I might sound like just a little kid, there's clearly far more to me than one would think.
Finally, my mission when it comes to food is simple. I want to give others my opinions on my culinary experiences everywhere. Whenever I have a notable taste of cuisine, I'll write about it. Whether notable because it was delicious beyond belief or because it was vile and unpleasant, you can expect I'll give you the hard truth every time. Buckle up and open your stomaches for some food for thought from the Teen With Taste.