Wednesday, April 23, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Craig LaBan

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I joined the Inquirer as its restaurant critic in 1998, after a stint covering the food beat for the Times-Picayune in New Orleans. Having eaten about 500 restaurant meals a year here ever since, I never cease to be amazed by the diversity and sophistication of Philadelphia's kitchens. To travel from its many authentic ethnic neighborhoods to the gastronomic temples of Walnut Street to its beery gastropubs, cozy BYOBs and multitude of greasy-but-great steak joints, is to know this town delivers satisfaction at every level of the food chain. Including online dish.

Live chat: Join Craig at 2 p.m. on Tuesdays in the chatroom.

Book: The Philadelphia Inquirer Restaurant Guide is available through our online store.

4 Bells: According to Craig, the best restaurants in the Philadelphia area.

Craig LaBan says Revel's hype seems to be sucking all the dining-buzz oxygen from that coastal sea breeze. A closer look shows a number of other worthy new ventures.
Our complete 2012 Shore Guide
How to bar-hop in A.C.
Craig: I had a number of great bites this week — including the season’s first al fresco tacos al pastor from Los Taquitos de Puebla, which can only mean one thing: the return of the Head House Farmer’s Market … what a joy! Here ares some other great flavors that make up this week’s Crumb Tracker Quiz. (1) spinach gnocchi with ricotta salata; (2) peanut butter ice cream double-chocolate chip cookie sandwich (3) artisanal ham plate (with Finchville Farms sugar-cured country ham from Kentucky, with drop biscuits, honey butter and green tomato marmalade (people, this is a “wow” ham if there ever was one). Ready, set … start crumbing!

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