Craig LaBan finds out that Nick Elmi's contribution to the dying specimen of the Le Bec Fin 1.0 swan song was minimal, and praises his efforts at the Rittenhouse Tavern. Continuously lauding Elmi's inventive and elegant cuisine, LaBan loves lots, but the highlights are most-definitely a dish of fluke crudo, and a bowl of sweet corn in cool milk.
"That crudo of local fluke, cured in kombu before being layered with sheer radish chips and silky dabs of lemon puree, was one of the best bites of raw fish I've had in months. Sweet summer corn, steeped into intensely flavored cool milk, is poured tableside into a bowl, sending an aromatic bloom of brown-butter foam rising toward a wafer-thin prosciutto blade that spans the rim."
Looks like the wait to get in for the Nick Elmi 2.0 show is going to be a bit longer now that LaBan has offered his stamp of approval. Also, this might be the quickest and biggest cheffy turnaround in the history of Inky reviews. Our count is 6 months to the day. Congrats to one of Philly's favorite young cooks.
Adam Erace loves his time at Morgan's Pier, where the backyard BBQ vibe makes everyone happy, and has attracted a huge cross-section of Philly denizens.
"From gurgling newborns to kulats-wearing grandmas, Elkins Park to Packer Park, Morgan’s Pier attracts a wider cross section of the city than a Phillies game. Old, young. White, black. Lawyers and nurses and students and plumbers."
Erace found good stuff with the simple burger, salt and pepper squid, and fried Jersey tomatoes. He didn't like the frozen fries and general fried heaviness of the menu.
Phyllis spent a good chunk of time fellating Vetri's efforts in Philly before being mildly disappointed by Alla Spina's showing. Nothing terrible, but nothing great, either.
"Pig pot pie ($16) was a twist on the classic pot pies but lacked vegetables. Salty pork strips were mixed with a slightly rich sauce and covered in puff pastry. I mixed my fork around and found a single pea. I did not care for this dish, but Edward did."
After all, they can't all be love letters to Joe Scarpone.
THE BLOGS: Bridges, Burgers, and Beer visits O'Neals for the burger; Philly Phoodie heads to the RTM for Dienner's BBQ Chicken finding some solid bites; Row Home Eats lands in the 'burbs at Forest & Main for beer and whatnot.
· All Week In Reviews Coverage [~EPHI~]