Weekend must-tries: Kosher on the Main Line; go hot in Chinatown

Citron & Rose bustles during a test run. STEVE LEGATO

Upscale kosher dining has come to the Main Line, and if you can't snag a table at the new Citron & Rose in Merion Station for dinner on Thursday, Nov. 8, you'll have to try again Sunday. The restaurant - overseen by Zahav/Percy Street's Michael Solomonov and Steve Cook - closes Friday and Saturday for Sabbath. That's an interesting dynamic in this "I gotta eat at 7:30 on a Friday or Saturday night" world. Try chef de cuisine Yehuda Sichel's chopped liver with sour cherry, chocolate and pumpernickel or the mushroom knish with smoked kasha, with nondairy ice cream for dessert.

Citron & Rose, 368-370 Montgomery Ave., Merion Station, 610-664-4919, www.citronandrose.com.

Some like it hot. Others like it scorching. Jack Chen has rolled out a build-it-yourself spicy stir-fry pot at Sakura Mandarin (11th and Race Streets in Chinatown) that lets you have a hand in self-immolation. The dish's base price ($7) gets you a bowl of long mini mushroom, green kelp, yuba, bean sprouts, lotus root, black fungus, bamboo shoots on wide noodles. Then you add sliced beef or lamb, beef tripe, ham, squid, shrimp, fish filet, or fish tofu. You select your spice level (mild spicy to very spicy) and its piquancy. By that, there's a spot on your menu card to indicate that you "want less numb," which limits the peppercorn added. See the menu card here.

Sakura Mandarin, 1038 Race St., 215-873-8338.



Get your elbow ready for the return of Sippin' by the River, now on the Jersey side of the river. It runs 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 10 at Campbells Field, at 401 N. Delaware Ave. in Camden. The event, sends 100 percent of proceeds to the Philadelphia/Delaware Valley Chapter of the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America. Attendees get  a keepsake wine glass, and lots of food, wine, beer, an outdoor cigar lounge, and a view of the Philly skyline. Tickets are $65, or $35 for designated drivers. Info is here.

Salute to veterans. McCormick & Schmick's restaurants (Penn Square in Center City and Cherry Hill) offers a free lunch or dinner entree to veterans (with proof) on Sunday, Nov. 11. (M&S has been doing this singular act of generosity since 1999.) Looking ahead to Monday, Nov. 12: Krispy Kreme marks Veterans Day by offering a free small coffee and doughnut to veterans and active miilitary. To redeem, you must show ID or be in uniform. In which case, watch the crumbs.

Looking forward: Wednesday, Nov. 14 is Taste of Philly, a $35-a-head food-and-drink benefit for City of Hope and Philabundance at the Crystal Tea Room; info is here. Thursday, Nov. 15 is the 10th annual Fairmount Fling, in which Fairmount Community Development Corp. takes over Founder’s Hall at Girard College for a party with food from nearly two dozen restaurants, unlimited beer and wine, and music. It's $50 at the door; info is here.