Monday, November 24, 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.

It only took a couple thousand years, but the flavors of Xi'an, home to the "Terra-cotta Army" and the origin of China's ancient Silk Road, have finally wended their way to Philadelphia.
Video: Xi'an Sizzling Woks
Gallery: Xi'an Sizzling Woks
Drink: Jonathan Pabiot 2012 Pouilly Fumé
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat: Reader: I am going to Little Nonna's for the first time this weekend. Any recommendations for some of their dishes?

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