Monthly Archives

June 2012



This was a large Southern storm where the main body was hitting Delaware down to Washington DC, plus over South Jersey. So I ran over to my mother-in-laws condo as it faces South.

The cars jockey for position at the top of the Art Museum Steps to watch the “show.”

The bright lights near the grass is the stage being built for the Fourth of July concert.

This is the view from my balcony

The little dot nearly in the center is a plane approaching the airport. Can you imagine being on that plane?

This video captures a couple lightning strikes. It really shows how difficult is is to photograph them as they are unpredictable when they strike. This was a nice long storm so i was able to get a few great shots, and a few ok shots.  Just watching the lightning gets my weather geek going.



I popped into Opa restaurant (1311 Sansom St., 215-545-0170) to steal co-owner Vasiliki Tsiouris away to the Washington Street Night Market (Snapshots from last nights #NightMkt here). I didn’t see her but I saw the back door open to the restaurant…   

I had heard inglings that a beer garden was going to pop up behind Opa restaurant on Samson St. but I had no idea it was so far along.

I found a party going on, well the end of a party with a few of the City
Council member staff. Nancy, Linda Norma, Irma, Cobra and Shunperb were
just winding their night down. From what I can see the place has a
gorgeous floor, a ping pong table, old skool boom box (holla) and is very spacious.
don’t want to spoil the surprise as you need to check out the soft
opening this weekend; the place kicks off officially on Monday and
will no doubt be a huge hit throughout the summer. Watch out SIPS
people, this is going to be the hot hangout. And yes food will be
served. It’s going to be a little different than the delicious Greek
food at Opa. Co-owner George Tsiouris tells
me it’s going to be world, street inspired. FUN CHILL FOOD (he’s so fun
chill, I can’t wait to see what he means.) PS maybe a gyro or other
special Greek food once in a while. Please, please include the hummus
and pita bread.
Random people sighting at Drury Beer Garden, photog Al B For and his gal friend Elise Kirsch. I love
love love love love this place for the 5 minutes I saw of it. Great
Much bigger and spacious than I every envisioned when he
mentioned it in passing a year ago, and then started to plan it



Night markets or night bazaars are street markets which operate at night and are generally dedicated to more leisurely strolling, shopping, and eating than more businesslike day markets.

Night Market Washington Avenue – Benefits The Food Trust

9th Street and Washington Avenue
Thursday, June 28th, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Free admission

Kristen Garcia, Marketing Phila Art Museum and Meg Wise, Smith Playground
Mike Chobert and Barbara KatzChobert

John Weidman 
and Yael Lehman

Bill Gerhman and Chris Mullins

Megan Stecher and Mac Francis

Jill Schoenfeld and Brian Duffy
A pop-up of Questlove’s new culinary and music venture, ?uest Loves Food, made it’s Philly debut last night at Night Market. Currently they have gigs in NYC and LA I was told, especially during the upcoming awards season, but they could infiltrate the market here in Philly – AND YOU WANT THEM TOO. Delicious!!!
Caroline and Nana Wilmont (She has her own catering company too called – Georgina’s)

Britney and Latiaynna (OMG we loved Questlove’s chicken. They soak it in [oh that might be the secret so I can’t tell you] and it’s incredibly moist.)

Hmm Questlove Carrot Cake with a Fortune Cookie – Tracy McGinnis, Quest Loves Food Pastry Chef

Cara and Chuck Bongiorno with Alexis Rosenzweig, Entertainment Brand Manager / Managing Partner at ?uest Loves Food
Alan Spooner, Molly Kincaid and Jennifer Cohan (Wants us to remember to head to the Second Annual Vendy Awards  on Saturday, July 28th. At The Lot at 39th and Market.)

Hello Ms Style. Rakia Reynolds, Skai Blue Media, and Bram Reynolds, Global Spectrum. She’s being honored September 20 by Philadelphia Fashion Week as Style Icon. (That’s a no brainer.)

Helena Tubis, food lover//new yorker//managing director of the and Jamie Shanker, Philadelphia Editor
Midtown Lunch
Thomas Price, Natashya DiBona and Megan Haney – From global phenomenon to most sought after
‘secret,’ Dîner en Blanc takes hold in a Philadelphia public space for
the first time this summer.   This très chic picnic, imported from
Paris, is part mystery tour, part pop-up feast and part je ne sais
quoi.  On Thursday, August 23, 2012, culinary and culture enthusiasts
dressed in white will converge upon a secret locale for an
unforgettable evening of elegance, beauty and magic. The waiting list for the Philadelphia edition of this world-wide viral
event is now open at

Doug Keith and Meghan Ross

Slice Pizza will be at the Phila Style Mag party July 19

The next Night Market is August 16 in Mount Airy (Madonna’s Bday, plus the day Elvis died, just sayin’)

Mt. Airy restaurants who you might see
are: Avenida, GeeChee Girl Rice Cafe, Wine Thief, Earth Bread + Brewery,
Trolley Car Diner, McMenamin’s Tavern, Little Jimmie’s Bakery Cafe,
Food for All and Trio Delight (WHYY).


ONE SHOTS, NEW BUSINESS- IT’S BACK ON – WALNUT STREET, David Grohl, All the Clinton’s on the Boardwalk

Ohhh how time has run away from me and the stories I wanted to tell. For the past month or so I’ve been blogging mostly about events with very little time to do the PhillyChitChatter. But don’t worry I’ve saved them up and even if they’re out of date let’s see what I have.

Last week fame-addicted Michael Lohan and Octomom Nadya Suleman ( & promoter Damon Feldman) were
photographed together  heading into the studios of Fox 29
in Philadelphia where she was scheduled to appear on Good Day Philadelphia to promote her participation in the Summer Rumble 2012 celebrity pillow fighting match against Shila Nathan from Wired 95.7 as well as her new softcore porn video, Octomom: Home Alone.
Oh, and she also announced she has been in the recording studio
recording a single called “Get On The Dance Floor” and is offering
“Octoloans” to people as she’s done so great with her business plan.  Next up for Feldman he’s wants to see Chris Brown and Drake put on boxing gloves and fight each other in the ring … and he’s offering them $1 million each to do it!

Should Drake and Chris Brown take the offer (and there’s a 100%
chance that they won’t), the fight would be a pay-per-view event that
will go down this August in either Las Vegas or Los Angeles.  Plus there will be a donation of a million dollars to a women’s battered shelter. Now that is epic.
 You might have read about David Grohl being in town & leaving an awesome tip in Dan Gross’ column. Someone sent me a shot of him sitting in with EBE at the wedding he was attending that weekend.

The progress on the old AAA building. For years this was where folks went to join the club for discounts and auto service members. Then 2 years ago it was the film set for the Bradley Cooper movie, Limitless. Now it’s being converted into apartments, and they’re adding 6 additional floors. Let’s hope rentals do much better in kinda DOA area than the condos, the Murano is across the street. Maybe you’ll get to see Hunter Pence as I hear he has a condo there. The delicious Rogues Gallery is located behind the building on 21st Street. (Naked Philly has some history on the project)

 President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton helped their longtime friend Marjorie Margolies Mezvinsky celebrate her 70th birthday Saturday night in Ventnor, NJ.Above with Chelsea, and her hubby Marc Mezvinsky.  (My neighbor took this shot from his balcony.)
Read more:

Watch sports videos you won’t find anywhere else

Condolences to my friend Caral Parris‘ family. She recently passed away. It was Caral who came up with this idea of the 24hr Emergency Dentist. It lives on even though she’s left us.

At Jakes Sandwich Board President Obama is leading the election via votes by Jellybeans. Stop in vote, take a jelly bean for you and give one to your favorite candidate.

It was on, then it was off, now I hear it’s back on – Ulta, the US beauty superstore chain to located in the 1600 block of Walnut – where Brassier Perrier used to be. (Again over to Naked Philly for info on the store when it was first chatted about in 2011.)

I caught the POTUS on 95 when he arrived in Philly 2 weeks ago. Honestly why does he come during rush hour?

I was there the night of Lindsay Furman’s “Love in the Wild” debut. I knew about it for months. I totally snoozed in writing about it and missed the boat. Here’s a photo from that night I took between the Great Chef’s event and the after party at Amis. I even made that effort to get there, ugh, but I was so busy posting events. So sweet she invited me.  Kate Carmack, Dustin Kaplan, Lauren Sembello, Mark Marek, Terry Jue, Lindsay Furman, Sabrina Strickland and Anthony Sembello co-owner of Rogues Gallery Bar. Dan Gross did an great story on it HERE

So sad to hear of the passing of my friend: Lisa
Maxine Reisman Halterman
, 57. The NY Times says she was an owner of a gallery in Rittenhouse Square and patron of the
arts in Philadelphia for nearly four decades, [she] died Wednesday, June 6,
following a ten-year battle with cancer. She passed away at home
surrounded by her family and friends. – She was very, very nice and a joy to know. (With my friend Greta Greenberger)


Center City SIPS – The Great Outdoors Sh*t Show

Center City SIPS kicked off a few weeks ago and every Thursday I read tweets & FB status’ that the night before was a great time, especially the two outdoor spots – Marathon Grill and Table 31. I thought I would check it out myself and see what the excitement was all about.

So glad Marathon Grill seems to be doing well, especially at 1818 Market Street which has a nice size patio area. They always seem to do a brisk business any day, but on SIPS Wednesday there’s a buzz in the air like it’s a Friday before a holiday Monday. Nearly all the tables were filled, and there are a lot of them as it’s a popular lunch spot as well. 
People also found a seat with a view along the wall, which proved adequate seating for sipping. The line to the 2 bars had a 10 minute wait, but there was table service with about 4 busy  servers, where peeps could take advantage of the drink specials and the full Marathon menu. Matt H, Robert T, Melissa A, Roberta T and Harold T (Hmm I wonder if 3 of them are related? I do know that they are all co-workers.)

Katie Everling, Erika Schmitt and Caitlin Joyce. CJ is heading for the Cape for Fourth of July. So jealous. Should be beautiful.
Brian Hill, Briana Murtha (recently re-located to Philly from Chicago and was out celebrating her bday with beau and friends. Happy Birthday!!), Julia Lamborn and Danielle Nubani

 Marathon Grill was fairly crowded by 6PM crowd was the crowd was as clean cut as Ferris. The only tattoos I saw were on the servers. Many of the people I chatted with were co-workers, on the  young side ie probably all carded, rarely a suit in the crowd and no one looking for love unless she/he walked up to their table or they had a secret crush on the guy who’s cubicle was down the hall. Everyone I talked to said they were there because it was an outdoor venue, people which put people in a good mood.  


The highlight of the evening was no doubt the live music and especially because DJ Royale was spinning it, which he does at every SIPS event. Here he’s with Monica Montalvo (who says go see the movie TED!!) – DJ Royale was playing Black Magic Women when I chatted with him. He said about 2 hours into the night the tables are moved back a bit and swaying turns to dancing.

Miya Hitchison and Carrie Wagner tell me that they were at Table 31, but it was too crowded.

and they were right. OMG the place was a mad house.
Raisa Griffith, Ricardo Hunter, Chris Coleman, Imani Johnson and Ini Ikpe. Although Raisa and Imani work across the street, they had never heard of SIPS. They have done happy hour at Table 31 and enjoy lunch there too.

There was a 20 minute wait for drinks, and when that happens I say go two fisted which is exactly what Greg Moyer did. Another Birthday, Happy to Kelly Pitcher who was out celebrating with Greg and Jack Femzil. Jack recommends Smokin Betty’s as a great hang for SIPS too.
Carly Cooper, Randi Edelman and Sarah Raiker. Arrived at 4:30PM to get a table. Only goes to Table 31 for SIPS as they like BYOB’s, but they do go to Marathon for SIPS too. They like the live music.
Samantha Borghese, Randi Metter and Pam Cousounis. They are not there to mingle, just to hang with their friends.

Julie, Dawn, Kim, Sharon, Jessie, Gowri, and Rilie and the co workers on my side, love to get together once and awhile to hit happy hour, but when it’s SIPS season they tend to go out every Wednesday. They usually go to Table 31 as it’s close to the train station and most of them live in the ‘burbs. I found that to be the case with many of the people who were at SIPS. The crowd was a little older than Marathon, I’d say over 25 with many peeps headed towards 30. There were more people with their friends, then with only co-workers, and the crowd dress went from casual ie shorts, to what you wore to work to dressy. The Plaza officially opens at 4:30PM, and you’ll need most of your party there to get the table size you desired. They aren’t going to sit two people at a six top. Jessie hits up Table 31 for lunch, and wished the SIPS menu had more items on it.

Hey there Georgy girl. I see headbands are making a comeback. Good for her and her bold statement. Many of the folks who were at Table 31, told me they’d be back for lunch, or a future happy hour.

Check out the SH*T SHOW, wow. It was very organized even with such a large crowd. The bartenders will card you and then issue you a wristband for you to wear to show you are over 21.

Bon voyage Brad (2nd from left), here with Brian, Chris, Leah, Raine and Vince. (The sips crowd do not appear in photos except on their FB pages. It’s like shooting strippers, no one wants to give me their last names.)

Samantha Brookman and Allison E. Drove in from the burbs to meet their friends. They went home and changed first. Did purses get big or what? After Table 31 they were headed over to Ladder 15, their favorite hang out. Last week they enjoyed SIPS at Noche.

Jeremy Sanchez (The Jawn) and Yvette Pabon. They spent their SIPS day at Top of The Tower. I didn’t even know Top of The Tower had a bar, but I did know it was an event space and boy oh boy what a great view. I didn’t have time to check it out this week but will next week. I headed over to R2L to check out my bud

Philadelphia Eagles Darryl Tapp who was the first celebrity bartender for R2L as it celebrates summer with the launch of its
Celebrity Bartending Series, running through mid-September. 

$1 from each drink will be donated to the celebrity’s
charity of choice (Tapp’s was Philabundence), and guests will be entered to win a celebrity prize


Eventually he got the hang of it, by the end of the night Chef Daniel Stern offered him a job.

Also on hand was his lovely wife Tiffany (r) and her friend, neighbor and client Holly. Tiffany is a exercise trainer. She got our friend Julie Dorenbos into bikini shape for the WMMR Calendar this year. We hung out for a couple hours, chatted and ate some delicious food as we watched the sunset. R2L is definitely the place to be for good food and awesome views.
Plus the friendliest of people too. I met a few new friends at the bar. Angela Rivers, Sabrina Golphin, Tiffany, Ariane Datil (the current Miss New Jersey – come out to Revolution House on Friday for the Fresh Artist charity event and meet Ariane.) and Nicole Allen.  Check out Philly Mag today  to see what project Darryl and Tiffany Tapp’s are up to? next week SIPS falls on July 4th, but don’t fret there’s a list of bars still participating in SIPS. So you can pre game before the concert and fireworks on the Parkway.