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EDIBLE west chester 

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SEPTEMBER 2017

The West Chester Cook Book - The Town's Top Chefs Share Their Favorite Recipes War of the Wings - 10 Restaurants, 10 Chicken Wings, 1 Review Deals on Meals - The Borough's Best Lunch Specials On a Roll - The Hunt for a Better Hoagie


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THE WC PRESS VOICE OF THE BOROUGH


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The

Press PUBLISHER Dan Mathers dan@thewcpress.com ADVERTISING MANAGER Nick Vecchio nick@thewcpress.com EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Skye McDonald skye@thewcpress.com GRAPHIC DESIGNER Nazarena Luzzi Castro nazarenaluzzi.com CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Kate Chadwick kchadwick@thewcpress.com CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER Amy Tucker amytuckerphotography.com

on the

Cover THE DISH: Penne alla Vodka

“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.” –J.R.R. Tolkien COLUMNISTS WC Food Co-op wcfoodcoop@thewcpress.com Becca Boyd bboyd@thewcpress.com Jamie Jones jjones@thewcpress.com Andrea Mason amason@thewcpress.com DJ Romeo romeo@thewcpress.com Dr Geoff Winkley drwinkley@thewcpress.com Published By... Mathers Productions 12 E Barnard Street West Chester, PA 19382 mathersproductions.com 610-344-3463 The WC Press is a monthly magazine distributed free of charge to more than 250 businesses. For a free digital subscription, visit thewcpress.com. For more information about specific distribution locations, visit thewcpress.com/distribution.

THE RESTAURANT: Mercato PHOTOGRAPHER: Skye McDonald

Worth

Noting

Our no-nonsense table of contents

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ON A ROLL The Hunt for a Better Hoagie

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2017 WEST CHESTER COOK BOOK The town's top chefs share their favorite recipes

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OWNER OF THE MONTH John Serock talks about his 15 years in the catering business

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DEALS ON MEALS The borough's best lunch specials

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BARTENDER OF THE MONTH We get to know Danielle Walz of Ryan’s Pub

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THE WAR OF THE WINGS Sampling chicken wings from 10 different restaurants

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PHOTO HUNT Find the five differences between the two pictures and win!

SEPTEMBER 2017 THEWCPRESS.COM

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OCTOBER 6, 2017 FIRST FRIDAY • 5pm - 9pm (rain or shine)

Art shows throughout downtown West Chester. Bring friends and make an evening of it!

www.GreaterWestChester.com

+ 3 0 One-N

ight-Only Art Shows

Greater West Chester Chamber of Commerce, 119 North High Street, West Chester, PA 19380 | 610.696.4046 | info@gwcc.org

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#WCGalleryWalk

@GreaterWestChester

@GWCC_PA


Letter

from the

Editor

Dan Mathers shares some personal insight about this month’s theme

My girlfriend and I recently decided it was time to grow up and be more fiscally responsible—we bought a house and have dreams of Fixer Upper-esque renovations. Knowing we’ll need to be smarter with our money, my girlfriend, an accountant, developed a budget by which I grudgingly agreed to abide. I’d never before been faced with the consequences of my spending in such a clear-cut fashion before. I’d assumed that my largest expense, like most Americans, was housing. I figured the second place position would be my car payment and insurance. I was wrong. Number one on my list was the money spent on food. Yes, I spend more money dining out each month than I do on my mortgage. No wonder my savings account is so utterly barren. That’s not to say I’m dropping dough on Michelin-star restaurants—I revel in simple dishes. I was raised by parents on a budget, and some of my fondest food memories are of overcooked spaghetti, doused in canned marinara sauce, served with a side of Wonder Bread and margarine. I’m more likely to ring up a large check at a wood-fired, thin-crust pizza joint with a good draft list than I am to dish out dollars on a four-course tasting menu. I find the most joy in classic dishes done exceptionally well, and the bulk of this issue focuses on just that. We have an entire article dedicated to seeking out the perfect hoagie. We identified our preferred sandwiches from our favored establishments, and even threw in a Vegan option for the more moral eaters in our readerships. All the offerings come in at really reasonable prices, too. We also threw a party this month under the guise of writing a story based on sampling and ranking chicken wings. There’s an incredible variety of wings in this town, in all kinds of flavors, sizes and preparations. We tried our top ten choices side-by-side and let you in on the results. Oh, and we even offer some tips on when and where you can get the most bang for your buck when buying ‘em. Is there a better food than a perfectly executed Buffalo wing, especially one that only costs 40 cents? I say there isn’t. Speaking of great deals, we put our heads together and came up with a list of lunch specials. So, next time you feel the need to get out of the office and grab some grub, consult our guide—if you’re smart you'll snag meals from some of our foremost restaurants for fractions of what you’d spend on that same dish at dinner. Finally, after the great response we received last year, we again compiled the West Chester Cook Book, in which this town’s top chefs shared their favorite recipes so that you can recreate their most delectable dishes in the comfort of your own home for a fraction of the price. We should, however, warn you that the time investment required by some of these dishes is quite high—these recipes are coming from professionals, after all. Honestly, I’m going to struggle with this budget. I’m not good at not spending money, and Hungry Dan is not a reasonable man. Luckily, this issue has taught me that it’s possible to indulge in the finer flavors without breaking the bank.—dan@thewcpress.com

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I

N 2013, North Carolina graduate student Joshua Kratz created a map of the contiguous United States based solely on the answer to this question: “What do you call the long sandwich that contains cold cuts, lettuce, and so on?” The answers are color-coded to represent the options “sub,” “hero,” “hoagie,” or “other.” The map is largely a sea of red—representing “sub”—with a couple of faded areas where “other” makes an appearance. And then, like a defiant little thumbprint over the Philadelphia area and spilling into New Jersey, there is a smudge of blue. We got your hoagies right here. The fact that such a thing as Wawa’s Hoagiefest even exists is pretty compelling evidence of the region’s devotion to this particular gastronomic delight. Although Wawa built their brand around the deli counter, these days their menu has evolved into a dizzying array of salads and wraps, bowls and breakfast, and as much as Wawa is sacrosanct in this part of PA, the hoagies they’re offering up these days feel more perfunctory than preeminent. And so, after yet another disappointment with a soggy shorti overflowing with lettuce, we knew it was time to reconsider our relationship with the convenience store colossus. To that end, we hit the streets of West Chester in search of this town’s hottest hoagies (figuratively, and, in at least two cases, literally). The following are our favorite local purveyors who’re serving up sandwiches on hoagie rolls with the attention to detail this great American classic deserves.

THE LINCOLN BY AMERICA'S PIE

AMERICA’S PIE VIBE: Patriotic. No, seriously. The place is decorated in Americana, and the menu items are named after prominent American citizens. There’s plenty of seating, and it’s bright and clean. Also, the music was killer—everything from Cream to Rage Against the Machine— perfect on a Friday night. WHAT WE ATE: This was our first stop and it set the bar pretty high. We ordered the Lincoln, a sublime combination of turkey, imported ham, pepper jack cheese, lettuce, tomato, red onion

and pesto mayo. Any hoagie aficionado will tell you: the roll matters. The contents can vary fairly wildly, but a roll can make or break the thing. This was a seeded Italian roll—a little crisp on the outside, light on the inside. I’m an old school hoagie consumer, so I like oil on mine (and sometimes a little vinegar), but the pesto mayo on this provided a tangy pop of flavor that was just right. A root beer fountain drink was the perfect beverage.

“Any hoagie aficionado will tell you: the roll matters. The contents can vary fairly wildly, but a roll can make or break the thing.” MISCELLANEOUS: I would be remiss in not mentioning the knee-buckling Chewy Marshmallow rice crispy-type thing I had for dessert—one of several tempting Sweet Treat offerings available here. This one featured brown butter and sea salt. Trust me, I’m a professional.

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ROAST BEEF BY CARLINO'S ITALIAN MARKET

CARLINO’S ITALIAN MARKET VIBE: Carlino’s is always a feast for the senses: festive, bustling, and bright, with excellent sights and even better smells. I could spend (and have spent) significant chunks of time in both this location. It’s always busy, with friendly, courteous employees to get you out of there quickly—if you’re so inclined... which I’m usually not. WHAT WE ATE: The Roast Beef Hoagie here was a slam dunk: very rare and sliced paper thin, the beef was packed onto an old-world style, dense, chewy roll, along with a slice of sharp cheddar, lettuce, tomato, red onion, and a dab of horseradish cream sauce. I’m not kidding when I say I am literally salivating at the memory as I type this. This hoagie was an excellent example of a perfect sandwich, perfectly executed. And I’m saying that as someone who prefers my roast beef hot. MISCELLANEOUS: Don’t forget Carlino’s is a full market. In addition to well… everything from soup to nuts here, there is an outstanding selection of beverages. (Pro tip: don’t bring someone who has a tough time with decision-making.) We went with the San Pellegrino Pomegranate and Orange Sparkling Soda, and a cucumber mint lemonade from Belvoir Farms.

ITALIANO BY LOVE AGAIN LOCAL

LOVE AGAIN LOCAL

“...very rare and sliced paper thin, the beef was packed onto an old worldstyle, dense, chewy roll. . .”

VIBE: It’s very cool here at this new vegan spot, literally and figuratively. There were even a couple of millennials seated at an outdoor table with the cutest puppy ever. The dark walls sport a chalkboard

menu, the light-colored wood tables and bright green chairs provide a pop of contrast. The music was cool and background-ish, but in a fun way (think Bjork, which was playing on our visit and was lovely). Did we mention that everything on the menu is vegan-friendly? Yup, Love Again Local boasts a menu full of items that are 100% plant-based. WHAT WE ATE: We took a break from our meat fest with Love Again Local’s cured "meats," which include pepperoni, salami, turkey, pastrami, and ham, all of which are made with a wheat gluten base. We had the "Panini Italiano," a combination of salami, pepperoni, "NY Everything" cheese, lettuce, tomato, red onion, and vinaigrette on toasted bread. The "cheese" added a tangy, creamy counterpoint to the mildly spicy kick of the "meat," with everything pressed between two slices of chewy, warm

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CHEESESTEAK HOAGIE BY BENNY'S PIZZA

To me, cheesesteaks and hoagies are two vastly different things, but, like some marriages, this particular sandwich worked well together in spite of itself.

since 1959 like Benny’s has, you are clearly doing something very, very right.

BENNY’S PIZZA

WHAT WE ATE: At the recommendation of the proprietor, I ordered a cheesesteak hoagie, something I would not ordinarily do. To me, cheesesteaks and hoagies are two vastly different things, but, like some marriages, this particular sandwich worked well together in spite of itself. The steak had a great flavor, the roll was tasty and fresh, as was the lettuce and tomato, and they did not skimp on the cheese—which is critical in a proper cheesesteak, in my humble opinion. Clearly these people are town treasures.

VIBE: This place is an old school pizza joint, and I’m not saying that like it’s a bad thing, because it’s a very, very good thing. It’s unpretentious and unassuming, which they can be, because if you’ve been around and serving food

MISCELLANEOUS: Benny’s has their own bottled sodas, with vintage flavors like Black Cherry and Vanilla Cream. Added bonus: candy at the counter, convenience store-style, including Swedish Fish, a personal favorite of mine. They

panini bread, available in white or multigrain (we chose white). MISCELLANEOUS: The fountain soda here is by Maine Root, and it’s wonderful. I’m not in the habit of drinking a lot of soda, but then I’m not in the habit of eating six sandwiches pretty much right in a row, either. We tried the Blueberry and loved it; the handsome gent next to us recommended the ginger ale.

have a $6 daily lunch special, too, which you can learn more about on page 51.

COLONIAL VILLAGE MEAT MARKET VIBE: This is a small town grocery store on steroids, with a very prominent deli department that was bustling when we arrived; there was even an employee discussing catering options with a couple of customers. There is no seating here, so we took our sandwich to go, and I also grabbed some prepared hot wings and macaroni and cheese to take home for dinner the next night. WHAT WE ATE: We ordered an Italian Hoagie (finally!), and it reminded me of the hoagies of my youth in West Philadelphia. When I took it in my hand it was solid as a baseball bat, and heavy, not to mention long—a lot of sandwich for $6.50. The deli clerk asked if I wanted oil and vinegar (yes, always with an Italian); the lettuce was properly shredded, and the tomatoes in particular were outstanding—exceptionally fresh and

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ITALIAN HOAGIE BY COLONIAL VILLAGE MEAT MARKET

ripe. We were surprised to find peppered ham on the sandwich, but pleasantly so. MISCELLANEOUS: My only regret was not bringing a grocery list with me, and I knew better, because my late mom was a big fan of Colonial in Havertown back in the day. Colonial carries groceries, along with produce and a great selection of refrigerated meals to go, and they have an unparalleled meat department. (And the excellent music continued here: The Rolling Stones’ “Beast of Burden” flooded the speakers as soon as we walked in.)

But clearly I’m an idiot, because that hoagie was delicious. Possibly some of the best corned beef I’ve ever had, an incredibly fresh roll, and a choice of hoagie sizes (small, medium and large) made this one a standout. We ordered a small, and it was compact in size, but given the circumstances, it was just right. And I’ll go back for a corned beef on rye for sure.

VIBE: Your classic small-town delicatessan. It's located just off Market Street on your way out of town, so it's usually quiet and rarely too crowded.

MISCELLANEOUS: Since this was our last stop, we took this hoagie to go, but there is plenty of seating at the West Goshen Deli. They also make breakfast sandwiches here, AND they have lottery tickets and takeout beer.

WHAT WE ATE: Once again, I deviated from my well-tread culinary path and ordered a corned beef hoagie at this deli. Don’t get me wrong—it’s not that I don’t like corned beef; it’s just that I typically eat it with Swiss cheese and spicy mustard on rye, not on a hoagie roll with lettuce, tomato, onions, and provolone.

West Chester is undisputedly home to some excellent places to eat, from walk-up taco bars to high-end, sit-down, steak dinner restaurants. But if the desire for a spectacular sandwich overtakes you, rest assured: West Chester’s got your hoagies right here.

WEST GOSHEN DELI

CORNED BEEF HOAGIE BY WEST GOSHEN DELI

SEPTEMBER 2017 THEWCPRESS.COM

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Home

Grown

Charlotte Burnod and Cathy von Luehrte shares info on local food and the upcoming West Chester Food Co-op

We drive out of West Chester heading west, past rolling hills and fields. We’re on our way to visit Meadow Run Farm, one of the vendors of West Chester Food Co-op’s Local Food Program. We pass through Ephrata’s main road, and a few moments later, pull into the farm, in Lititz, where Marcus Horst greets us and shows us where he pasture-raises cattle, sheep, pork and poultry, all antibiotic-free. We first visit the pigs, who are inside their shelter avoiding the sun. Marcus urges them to move outside, where the piglets are very energetic, but sticking close to their mother. After that, we head to a much larger field where a herd of Red Devon cattle congregate under the trees. They remain calm, even as we approach them. In industrial agriculture, cows are fed grains, primarily soy or corn, because it’s cheap, and the goal is to fatten up these animals as fast as possible. However, grain is not part of the cow’s natural diet—the cows at Meadow Run are 100% grass-fed. Thus, the beef is lower in fat and contains additional vitamins and nutrients. At Meadow Run, the fields have over a dozen different kinds of grasses, and this diversity of crops is an advantage when confronted with weather changes. The cattle and sheep at Meadow Run are also pasture-raised, meaning they have free space to roam. This is in contrast to feedlots, or Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) in conventional agriculture, where animals coexist in a limited space. We walk to another field, where the barred rock chickens, their intrcate black and white feather patterns contrasting with their red combs, weave in and out of each other. They find shelter in a covered structure but are free to come and go as they please. The constant clucking recalls a playground at recess. Some of the chickens take a dust bath, digging a shallow hole and dirting themselves as much as possible to prevent parasites. The chickens feed on grains—of which 90% is grown on the farm—and also graze; thistle is a particularly tasty snack. Soy, corn, and spelt is fed to the chickens and the pigs. The soy is whole but roasted first, making it more digestible. Unlike Meadow Run, most conventional farmers will feed their animals soybean meal, which is what is left after the oil is extracted. A feeling of peace and tranquility permeates throughout Meadow Run. The sense that these animals will all one day become food doesn't seem so intolerable, like it does when confronted with the reality of corporate, large-scale argiculture. Given the choice between the two, the more humane option is obvious. Meadow Run products can be ordered for pick-up in West Chester through West Chester Food Co-op’s Local Food Program. Meat is delivered once a month, frozen, on the third Tuesday. Order deadline is 7 days before the pick-up day. You can visit ourwebsite, wcfood.coop/2017-csa-program, for more information. –wcfoodcoop@thewcpress.com

SEPTEMBER 2017 THEWCPRESS.COM

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Dave's Automotive Repair has served the West Chester, PA area with a commitment to service and value for over 40 years. We appreciate your interest and look forward to earning your business.

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Visit our website to make an appointment online.

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West Chester's

Cook Book

We asked West Chester's top chefs to share some of their restaurants' most-requested recipes

edited and photographed by

Skye McDonald, Amy Tucker & Nick Vecchio

SEPTEMBER 2017 THEWCPRESS.COM

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Crab Cakes

with Buerre Blanc Sauce John Serock Catering

1 medium onion, minced 1 red pepper, minced 1 green pepper, minced 1/2 bunch celery, chopped fine 1/2 cup oil 1/2 cup flour 1 pint heavy cream salt & pepper (to taste) 1 cup mayonnaise 3 tablespoon lemon juice 2 tablespoon Worcestershire 2 tablespoon Old Bay 1 pound crabmeat, claw 1 pound crabmeat, lump sauce: 2 cups white wine 4 tbsp butter, cold, cubed 1/3 bunch chives, chopped

1. In a sautĂŠ pan combine the vegeta-

bles and oil and soften over a medium heat. (You should start in a cold pan to prevent browning).

2. Once vegetables are soft (approx-

imately 8 mins.) incorporate the flour into the pan using a spoon to stir, cook for 1 minute.

3. Remove from heat and mix in the heavy cream until smooth.

4. Return to heat, simmer for 2 minutes to thicken.

5. Remove from heat, add the remaining ingredients with the exception of the Lump crab.

6. Stir ingredients together and gently

fold the lump crab meat in, being careful not to break up the lumps.

7. Form crab cakes into desired size and place on a non-stick baking pan into a 425°F oven for 8-10 minutes.

8. Simmer 2 cups of wine over

medium heat until reduced by half.

9. Remove pan from heat and whisk in cold butter a little at a time to incorporate.

10. Season with salt, pepper and

chives and spoon over crab cakes for service.

Mango Salsa America's Pie

4 ripened Mangos 1/2 cup red onions 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes 1/4 bunch of cilantro pinch of salt and pepper

1. Dice mango into cubes 2. Chop red onions & cilantro finely 3. Mix together in a bowl and add the salt and pepper and red pepper flakes.

4. Top on your favorite fish, salad or chicken

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4. Core fennel bulbs. Place in

olive oil and orange juice, season with salt and pepper. Braise until glazed.

5 .Boil 2 potatoes. 6. Crush tomatoes and toss with olive oil and parsley.

7. Sweat 2 tablespoons of

minced garlic in butter. Season with salt and 2 pinches of saffron.

Seafood Stew Split Rail Tavern

4 ounces striped bass 6 u15 shrimp 12 littleneck clams 8 mussels 1 quart fish stock 1 quart clam stock 1 quart chicken stock Red Bliss potatoes San Marzano tomatoes

4 fennel bulbs 1 onion 1 bulb garlic 1 lemon tomato paste thyme olive oil 2 cups orange juice salt and pepper parsley saffron white wine

Brisket Sandwich Saloon 151

8. Roast head of garlic in oil. 1. Dry roast shrimp shells,

onion, garlic, fennel slathered in tomato paste in hot oven until the paste becomes leathery. Transfer to pot.

2. Add water, fish, clam and

chicken stocks with fresh thyme and lemon slices.

3. Simmer for 20 minutes. Reduce to 2 quarts.

Combine saffron-garlic mixture and purĂŠe.

9. In hot pan, sear bass skinside down until golden.

10. Add shrimp, mussels, Littlenecks and garlic until golden.

11. Deglaze pan with white

wine. Add all ingredients, cover pan and simmer until mussels and clams open.

2 tbsp Cajun Seasoning 2 tbsp Granulated Garlic 2 tbsp Dark Chili Powder Beef Stock 2 tbsp Liquid Smoke Whole Brisket BBQ Sauce Cole Slaw

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. 2. Combine seasonings in

equal parts and spread over meat. Rub seasoning into meat firmly until both sides are covered.

3. Place meat in roasting

pan and add beef base until meat is 1/2 submerged. Add liquid smoke.

4. Cover tightly w with foil. Bake for 7-8hrs.

5. Shred meat & mix with

BBQ sauce. Place on kaiser roll and top with Coleslaw.

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Mahi Mahi Tacos Barnaby's

Fish Tacos: 6 ounces Mahi Mahi filet Jamaican Jerk Seasoning 3 6-inch flour tortillas Chopped romaine or iceberg lettuce 1 cup Cheddar Jack cheese Mango Salsa: 3 mangoes 3 Roma tomatoes 1 green bell pepper 2 jalapeĂąos 1 teaspoon paprika 1 teaspoon cumin 1 teaspoon salt and pepper 3 limes 1/2 bunch cilantro Chipotle Ranch: 4 ounces Ranch dressing 1 ounce Chipotle Tabasco sauc

1. Rub Mahi Mahi filet with Jamaican jerk seasoning and let marinade.

2. Dice mangoes, tomatoes and bell peppers in a 1/4 inch dice.

3. Remove seeds from jalapeĂąos and dice.

4. Chop cilantro leaves without stems.

Verticelli

Brother's Pizza & Pasta

5. Combine, add paprika, cumin, salt and pepper to taste.

6. Take 3 limes and roll with pressure

1 cup of walnuts 1 cup of parmesan 6 tablespoons of garlic 4 cups of basil 4 cups of arugula 2 cups of olive oil

on hard surface to break up the juices in limes.

7. Juice limes into mixture, mix well and let sit.

8. Grill Mahi Mahi 4-5 minutes on each side until inside is white and flakey. Let rest for 3-5 minutes.

9. Grill tortilla shells in frying pan with cheddar jack cheese to soften tortillas and melt cheese.

10. Top tortillas with lettuce, slice the Mahi Mahi and place on lettuce.

11. Top with mango salsa and drizzle with chipotle ranch.

12. Garnish with fresh lime wedges.

1. Roughly chop walnuts. 2. Combine basil, arugula, walnuts,

garlic and Parmesan cheese in blender or food processor.

3. With blender/ food processor run-

ning, gradually add olive oil to desired consistency (more oil to be used as a sauce, less oil for use as a spread or dip).

4. Toss pesto with capellini and chicken.

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Moroccan Salmon Salad Landmark Americana

12 fluid ounces grain and bean mix 1 fluid ounce lemon dijon vinaigrette 2 cups spring mix 1/4 cup julienned carrots 1/4 cup julienned cucumber 5 ounces grilled salmon

1. Preheat grill for medium heat. 2. Lightly oil grill grate. Place salmon on

grill and cook for 6 to 8 minutes per side, or until the fish flakes easily with a fork. Lemon Vinaigrette: 2 cups lemon juice 3 cups extra virgin olive oil 3 tablespoons dijon mustard 1/2 teaspoon black pepper 1 tablespoon Kosher salt 1 tablespoon lemon zest 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar

1. Add lemon juice, pepper, salt, zest

and mustard into a blender. 2. While the blender is running, slowly add olive oil and blend until thickened. Moroccan Grain Mix: 2 cups chickpeas 2 cups Israeli couscous 2 cups red quinoa 1 teaspoon paprika 3/4 teaspoon curry powder 1 teaspoon lemon zest 1 teaspoon Kosher salt 2 pinches black pepper 1/4 cup lemon juice 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds 1/2 cup raisins Pearl Couscous & Quinoa: 2 cups couscous 2 cups quinoa 7 cups water Toasted Chickpeas: 2 cups rinsed chickpeas 1/4 teaspoon paprika 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt 2 pinches black pepper

1. Combine ingredients and cook in

500°F oven for 5-10 minutes until chickpeas are toasted. 2. Top with spring mix, carrots and cucumber, then drizzle with vinaigrette. Plate with grilled salmon.

Rosemary Maple Dijon Pork Loins Colonial Village Meat Market 1/2 cup dijon 1 cup maple syrup 1/4 cup white sugar 1/4 cup cooking wine 2 tablespoons rosemary 1 pork loin

1. Heat pan until smoking point, reduce heat and sear pork loin on all sides. 2. When on last side, put in oven at

350°F for 30 minutes. 3. Remove pork from pan and deglaze pan with cooking wine. 4. Reduce to cook off alcohol and add dijon, maple syrup, rosemary and white sugar. 5. Bring to simmer on low heat and coat the loins gently. 6. Slice into 1/4" pieces and enjoy!

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Mushroom Soup Pietro's Prime

2 Spanish onions thinly julienned 1/2 bunch tarragon minced 2 pounds whole butter Flour, if needed 1 jar (16 ounces) mushroom base 3/4 gallon water 3 vidalia onions chopped 1/2 cup whole black peppercorns 7 bay leaves 1 cup cremini mushrooms sliced 3/4 cup button mushrooms sliced Salt and pepper to taste

1. In a large stock pot, combine water, mushroom base,

Spanish onions, peppercorns, and bay leaves and simmer at least 2 hours. 2. In a second large stock pot, combine butter, onions and tarragon and cook until all onions are clear and soft. 3. Stir in flour until a thick roux is formed. 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil Kosher salt Freshly-ground black pepper 3 teaspoons Herbes de Provence 6 cloves garlic, minced 1 pound zucchini, cut into 1/4" slices 1 1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes, cored and cut into 1/4" slices

4. Let roux cook for 3-4 minutes. 5. Stir in stock and add to roux with buerre mixer until thick and smooth.

6. Add sliced mushrooms, salt and pepper. 7. Simmer 30-45 minutes or until mushrooms are cooked.

Provençal Vegetable Tian Cuisine de Sylvie

1. Put oil in large skillet over medium high heat. 2. Add onions. Season with salt and pepper. 3. Cook until softened about 5 minutes. 4. Add Herbes de Provence and garlic. Cook 2 minutes

more. 5. Heat oven to 400°F. Spread cooked onion mixture in the bottom of a 9x13" earthenware baking dish. 6. Arrange zucchini and tomatoes in alternating rows. Start by making a row of overlapping zucchini slices, standing them on edge. 7. Follow with a row of tomatoes in the same manner, packing the rows tightly. Continue until baking dish is filled. 8. Sprinkle the surface of the vegetables generously with salt and pepper and drizzle the olive oil. 9. Bake uncovered for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350°F and continue baking for 45 minutes to an hour. 10. Cool dish to room temperature, allowing the flavors to meld.

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Pan-Roasted Duck Breast Roots Café

1 tablespoon of olive oil 1 tablespoon garam masala 1 teaspoon of ground coffee 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 tablespoon of salt and pepper

1. Coat duck breast and rub with

garam masala, cinnamon, coffee grounds, salt and pepper. 2. Let breast marinade in dry rub for at least 2 hours. 3. Rinse off breast under cold water and then pat dry with paper towel. 4. Get cast iron pan or oven-safe pan on high heat and put olive oil in pan. 5. Once olive oil is hot, set duck breast, skin-side facing down, in hot pan and turn heat to medium high. 6. Use tongs to press breast into pan for about 45-60 seconds then let cook skin down for another 5-8 minutes. 7. Drain out fat from pan and flip breast and cook another 3 minutes. 8. After cooking, take out of pan and let rest for 5 minutes on cutting board. 9. Slice breast into 1/2" medallions.

Ryan’s Smokehouse Maple Salmon & Shrimp Ryan's Pub

Bacon Aioli: 1/2 cup of diced raw bacon 3 egg yolks

2 garlic cloves 1 cup of vegetable oil 1/2 lemon

1. Cook bacon in a saucepan on low heat for 8-10 minutes. 2. Strain bacon from saucepan, saving pieces and fat. 3. Purée egg yolks and garlic cloves in a food processor. 4. Slowly add vegetable oil, bacon fat, fresh lemon juice, and cooked bacon to mix and blend until thickened.

Salmon & Shrimp: 6-7 ounces salmon filet 2 large shrimp 1 teaspoon of McCormick Smokehouse Maple Spice Rub Salt and pepper 1. Preheat oven to 375°F. 2. Lightly dust salmon with McCormick Smokehouse Maple Spice Rub and a pinch of salt and pepper. 3. Place shrimp on grill and cook each side for 7-8 minutes. 4. Place salmon on grill and cook each side for 6 minutes. 5. Remove salmon from grill and place in oven for 4 minutes. 6. Plate salmon and place shrimp on top. 7. Generously drizzle bacon aioli across salmon and shrimp

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Penne alla Vodka Mercato

1 pound penne 3 cloves garlic 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano 28 oz San Marzano tomatoes 4 tablespoon olive oil 1 cup vodka 1 c heavy cream 1/2 cup chopped proscuitto 1/4 cup of fresh chopped basil 4 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil pinch of red pepper

Pan-Roasted Bourbon Lobster

1. In a wide pot big enough to

hold all the pasta and sauce, heat the olive oil. 2. Add the garlic and cook until golden brown. 3. Stir in the cubed prosciutto and cook untill golden brown (3-5 minutes). 4. Add the tomatoes, crushed pepper, pepper and salt. 5. Simmer for 10 minutes. 6. Add the vodka and cook until it no longer smells strongly of vodka (about 3-5 minutes). 7. Stir in the cream and simmer for 2-3 minutes. 8. Cook the pasta until al dente. 9. Add the pasta to the pot with the sauce and stir until pasta is covered. 10. Add additional salt and pepper if needed. 11. Toss with the freshly grated cheese and basil. Serve.

Righteous Tap House 2 pounds live lobsters 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil 1/2 cup sliced shallots 4 garlic cloves thinly sliced 2 tablespoons capers 1/2 cup Wild Turkey

6 ounces lobster stock 1 lemon, juiced, and zest 8 tablespoons cold butter 2 tablespoons parsley 2 tablespoons tarragon Salt and pepper

1. Remove tomalley and roe from lob-

sters, then mix them in a small bowl with herbs. 2. Heat oil in large saute pan. 3. Place lobster meat-side down for 3-4 minutes until meat is caramelized. 4. Turn over and cook shell side for 2 minutes. 5. Add shallots, garlic, capers. Cook until lightly browned. 6. Remove from heat and add bourbon. 7. Place back on flame until reduced by half. 8. Turn lobster meat-side up. Add lobster stock. Place in 450°F oven for 5 minutes. 9. Place lobster on serving dish. 10. Put sauce on medium heat. Whisk in row, tamale, herbs, lemon zest. 11. Remove from heat. Whisk in butter and sip. 12. Ladle on top of lobster and serve immediately.

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Caramel Apple Cheesecake with Streusel Topping Cakes & Candies by Maryellen Crust: 1 1/3 cups graham crackers, finely crushed 2 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. 2. In a mixing bowl, whisk

together graham cracker crumbs, sugar and cinnamon. 3. Pour in butter, stir. Press into the bottom of springform pan. 4. Bake 5 minutes and cool. Streusel: 1/2 cup all-purpose flour 1/4 cup quick oats 1/4 cup and 2 tablespoons packed light-brown sugar 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/8 teaspoon salt 1/4 cup unsalted butter, in diced 1/2" cubes

Creme Chocolat La Baguette Magique

1. In bowl, whisk flour, quick

oats, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt. 2. Add cold butter and rub until mixture forms crumbles. Filling: 2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened 2/3 cup granulated sugar 2 large eggs 1/4 cup sour cream 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 pound granny smith apples, finely chopped

1. In a mixing bowl, cream the cream cheese with sugar. 2. Mix in eggs one at a time, mix in sour cream and vanilla. 3. Pour batter over crust. 4. Divide apples, then finish by putting streusel over top. 5. Bake in preheated oven 23-25 minutes. 6. Serve with caramel.

125 grams (4.5 ounces) dark chocolate 500 grams (18 ounces) milk 2 tablespoons sugar

3 tablespoons starch 15 grams (1 tablespoon) butter

1. Mix a small portion of milk with the starch.

3. Remove and allow to cool while whisking

In a pan, bring to a boil the chocolate, sugar, butter, milk mixture and remaining milk. 2. Whisk until it boils.

from time to time. 4. Pour in serving cups. Store in fridge before enjoying.

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Salame di Cioccolato

Gemelli Artisanal Gelato 200 grams 100% pure cocoa powder 150 grams sugar 175 grams of dry cookies, crushed (either Ora Saiwa or amaretto cookies) 150 grams butter room temperature

1. In a KitchenAid bowl (or using a hand

mixer) whip the softened butter with the sugar until smooth. 2. Beat the eggs in a separate bowl and add to the butter and sugar mixture little by little. Keep mixing until mixture becomes fluffy and smooth. 3. Add the cocoa powder, mix well. 4. Add the crushed cookies, mix well. 5. Pour the mix (which should be firm) on some parchment paper and roll and shape it like a salami. 6. Let it cool and rest overnight in your refrigerator rolled in the parchment paper. Store in the refrigerator when not serving. You can also freeze it (whole or sliced) to enjoy it over time.

Almond Horseshoe Cookies

Yori's Church Street Bakery 4 pounds almond paste 1 pound granulated sugar 1/2 pint egg whites Sliced almonds to roll on the dough Coating chocolate to dip ends

1. Put almond paste and sugar in mixing

bowl and mix on low speed to break up almond paste. 2. Slowly add egg whites to break down almond paste and sugar into a smooth dough. 3. Use small ice cream scooper to make even-sized portions of dough. 4. Roll dough into a log on top of the sliced almonds to coat the outside, then form into a horseshoe shape. 5. Bake 400°F for 20-25 minutes. 6. Put in fridge to get stiff, then dip ends in chocolate coating.

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Pumpkin Cake The Master's Baker

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Prepare 2

8-inch round pans with parchment and pan release. Sift the flour, baking soda, spices and salt. 2. Cream the sugar and shortening together until light and fluffy in stand mixer on medium speed. 3. Put mixer on low speed and beat egg yolks one at a time. Make sure each yolk has been mixed in completely. 4. Combine the pumpkin purée, vanilla and buttermilk together in a separate bowl. 5. With mixer on low, alternate with wet mixture. Mix until no white flour remains, and wet ingredients are combined. The batter will be thick. 6. In a clean bowl, whip up whites until soft peaks form. Take a small portion and fold into the batter. Take the remaining whites and fold them into the batter. 7. Divide the batter between the two pans evenly and level them off. 8. Bake until cake tester comes out clean.

11 1/2 ounces sugar 4 1/2 ounces shortening 9 1/2 ounces all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg 1/2 teaspoon cloves 1/4 teaspoon ginger 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 10 ounces salt 3 large eggs 1 1/2 cups pumpkin purée 3 ounces buttermilk 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Chocolate Cookie Butter Cake Filling Dia Doce

260 grams of chocolate 2 cups heavy cream 2 tablespoons sugar 1/2 cup hot water or coffee 5 tablespoons cocoa 1/3 cup cookie butter

1. Place 260 grams of chocolate into a double

boiler and melt. Transfer chocolate into a bowl. Set aside to cool. 2. In a separate mixing bowl, add 2 cups of heavy cream to 2 tablespoons of sugar and whip until the mixture forms soft peaks. Set bowl aside. 3. In a separate bowl, add 1/2 cup hot water, then 5 tablespoons cocoa powder. Mix well. Set aside. 4. Add cocoa mixture to melted chocolate, then 1/2 cup cookie butter to that mixture and mix well. 5. Add 1/2 whipped cream mixture and fold into chocolate mixture. Then add the remaining whipped cream, folding until combined.

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Near and Far

Jamie Jones of Whirlaway Travel explores some travel options abroad and highlights their local counterparts

When I was 15 years old I came home from school one afternoon to find the most adorable piglets in the barn. My dad felt that it was high time I took on some responsibility, so he gave me the task of raising them. Over the next few months my bond with Anne and Wilbur grew about as quickly as their size did. Wilbur continued to snuggle up on my lap even after his weight topped 200 pounds. I loved those pigs dearly, so when my dad dropped the bomb that we would either have them slaughtered to feed our family, or I could sell them, I was torn. After pleading to let me keep them to no avail, I opted to sell them at auction. From that moment on pork has not crossed my lips for fear that my dear Anne and Wilbur may be on the other end of the fork. Fast forward 20+ years through transitions from a vegetarian, to vegan, to pescatarian, to fully omnivorous lifestyles, animal welfare has always been something that has weighed heavily on my mind. During a hike in Sedona last year I decided that my relationship with meat needed to come to an end. I adopted a vegetarian lifestyle once again, much to the chagrin of my carnivorous family. Recently, I have been drawn back to a vegan lifestyle for health and compassion for our fellow earthlings. This lead me to Love Again Local, who recently opened their doors on Church Street, and I have found refuge and comfort knowing that everything on their menu is 100% plant-based and delicious. One of my favorites is their Panini Italiano (learn more on page 17), along with a Love Chunk peanut butter cookie. My mouth is watering just thinking about it! The ambiance at the shop is warm and welcoming and the staff are more than willing to let you sample. I was skeptical about their chicken salad—I used to be quite picky with real chicken—and I could not believe that it was really plant based! Gemelli also has a wonderful rotating vegan ice cream flavor and Couch Tomato offers vegan cheese that even my kids like. It is comforting to know that I have plenty of options in our small town to fit my food choices. One of the most difficult parts of travel for me, and many others, is finding places that will accommodate my lifestyle. In many parts of the world, meat is a daily staple and there isn’t a universal understanding of vegan vs vegetarian. As much as I believe that travel helps us appreciate the diversities that make us all unique, and I embrace other cultures, harming animals isn’t something I’ll ever embrace. Luckily, Luxury Travel Advisor recently listed the top 10 vegan-friendly cities worldwide. Turin, Italy tops the list with a push from the Mayor to educate schoolchildren on safeguarding the environment and animal welfare. With more than 30 restaurants offering vegan choices, I can rest assured that I will not go hungry! In the meantime you can find me at lunchtime chowing down at Love Again Local.—jjones@thewcpress.com

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Owner of the

Month

PHOTO Amy Tucker INTERVIEW Skye McDonald

John Serock talks about the relationships he’s formed and the catering business he’s grown over the past 15 years. How long has John Serock Catering been around? I officially incorporated in early 2001, but I did a few events getting it off the ground before that. I had been in restaurants as a general manager, and I knew I wanted to get out of restaurants and an opportunity came along. Have you always been in West Chester? In 2012, we purchased this location and moved in here. It’s a cool spot. I was really nervous because I spent five years getting my name established in Malvern, and then I was moving to West Chester, so it seemed like such a big jump. Even though we were only moving

four miles, it felt like a whole new world. I learned very quickly that the people in West Chester were very loyal. We were able to build a following very quickly. What is the difference between managing a restaurant and owning the company? One of the reasons I got out of restaurants was that I didn’t like where restaurants were going. When I was growing up, part of the reason I got in the business was that I loved going to restaurants. It was always a special occasion, and I loved going and getting pampered and having great food. When I started managing restaurants in the ‘90s, the times were changing. People were going out to dinner two or three times a week because it’s now a convenience thing. And you could just see it—it wasn’t an enjoyable situation taking care of people anymore. I realized that’s not why I got into this business, and I didn’t want to continue. But with catering, everyday is a party, and—with the exception of the occasional funeral—there’s always something to celebrate. I’ve made a career where I can pick what I want to do. What are you most proud of in business? I really think it’s the team that I’ve

put together. It’s funny because, when I was in high school, I was painfully shy, I didn’t like to be in the spotlight. I made friends with people, but I wasn’t the person that walked in a room and approached people. As I’ve grown in this business, I feel like it’s molded me. The food service business in general has made me come out of my shell and has made me more confident. That’s allowed me to be the person who can manage and connect with people. What’s the most memorable moment of your career? It’s always the father-daughter dance at every wedding. It’s taken a lot of meaning for me the past five years, since my daughter’s been born. I see these dads dance with their daughters and I’m like, “Wow.” Do you have any advice to people interested in following your career path? Catering is a marathon, not a sprint. At times I felt like I wasn’t growing as fast as I wanted to, but I’m exactly where I want to be. You really have to be passionate—it’s not a “get rich quick” business. Catering is very relationship-driven, and it takes time to build those relationships.

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MAKE THIS SCHOOL YEAR

GREATER THAN LAST YEAR!

A new school year brings a fresh start—and Mathnasium is here to help set the stage for success! Together, we can make this school year greater than last year!

NOW ENROLLING FOR FALL Math Help and Enrichment

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844-4GETMATH (844-443-8628)

mathnasium.com/glenmills • mathnasium.com/westchester

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We usually polish off two to three plates each time we dabble in Limoncello’s lunch buffet

photos Amy Tucker

Y

our lunch break is sacred. 20s, but taking advantage of their lunch

Don’t waste it by, once again, hunching over your keyboard and gobbling down some crappy frozen food you heated up in the microwave. With the awesome lunch specials we’ve tracked down, even the most frugal penny pinchers can be convinced to abandon their cubicle in favor of a local café. Armed with nothing but determination and insatiable hunger, we painstakingly researched and tracked down the best places to enjoy your lunch during the week. Here’s our list of the nine best lunch deals in West Chester! Italian Lunch Buffets West Chester’s Limoncello and Mercato serve up all-you-can-eat options, combining the best of a cheap buffet and quality Italian cuisine. Bravissimi! Both of these restaurants have dinner menus with entrées ranging in the mid to high

buffet means you’ll be out the door with a check totalling in the low to mid teens. Limoncello: From 11:30am–2:30pm, at a one-time price of $11.95 plus sales tax, you can enjoy an ever-changing variety of apps and entrées. Choose from salads, coconut shrimp, Italian pork sausage, soups, pasta, pizza and more! We suggest loading up a plate of Caesar salad with a side of grilled veggies. Polish that off and come back looking for some protein and more veggies. When you’ve put that down, finish up with a slice of calzone or piece of pizza. Pick and pair at your leisure. Mercato: Mercato has a similar buffet. At $9.95, you can enjoy their weekday express buffet, which, according to Apple Logan, one of the managers, always includes

All you have to do is put $11 down and you know you’re covered three types of greens—mesclun, arugula, and romaine—to make your own salad, two types of pasta, meatballs, chicken, fish, an assortment of pizza and vegetables, and other entrées. “I think the selection that we have is outstanding,” she said. “And I think the environment that we offer it in is just a beautiful space.” Ryan’s Pub: This pub on West Gay Street is such an ideal for the days when you need to get away from the office and stop thinking. You can walk in during the week and order any sandwich, large salad, or burger for only $11… and that includes

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a soft drink, sales tax, and tip, which means you don’t even need to do basic math on your break. “All you have to do is put $11 down and you know you’re covered,” says owner Pat Ryan. “In and out, bang bang! $11 is a great deal!” Ryan’s also has a $7 lunch special that boasts half a sandwich and a cup of soup. What’s Pat’s favorite item on the lunch menu? “It has to be the pork sandwich with provolone cheese and roasted red peppers.” Burrito Loco Don’t be fooled by the fact that they’re located right across from the street from West Chester University—Burrito Loco’s awesome California-style Mexican cuisine isn’t just for students. Owner Nancy McGovern was happy to talk about all their great deals. “We have our School Special, which is a burrito or a burrito bowl. It includes any choice of chicken, beef, or vegetables, and you get chips and salsa on the side, or beans and rice, and then you get a drink or a bottle of water for $8.25,” she said. “And anybody can order it—you don’t have to be in school!” The same thing goes for a Combo Special, except that’s a choice of two tacos or a quesadilla. They also offer different daily specials. “We have meatless Monday, so you can save $1 on a regular vegetable option after 2pm, and it’s $1.50 for hard shell tacos all day, every Tuesday. Wednesday you can get a free drink with your salad.” Our favorite daily special is Gordo Friday. If you’re unfamiliar with the Gordo challenge, it involves eating a double burrito in a single sitting—those who accomplish the feat are enshrined on the wall— and on Fridays you can take advantage of the challenge for $1 less. When you consider they use no preservatives and make all their own salsa, guacamole and hot sauce in house, pretty much everything on the menu becomes a great deal. Kooma Kooma is the kind of restaurant where you can easily rack up a big bill over the course of a meal, which is what makes their lunch specials so amazing. Weekdays from 11:30am-3:30pm they have a variety of options you can order for cheap, from their udon noodles coming in at $8 to their $13 salmon teriyaki bento box, which is served with a

Kooma’s salmon teriyaki bento box comes with a salad, two sides and a California roll, all for only $13. If you’re feeling Mexican, Burrito Loco’s combo special gets you two tacos, chips and salsa all for $8.25.

salad, two seasonal sides, and either a tuna or California roll. The bento boxes are a great option for getting a variety of flavors on your plate, or you can turn to something like their stonepot bibimbap, a single dish with noodles, meat, vegetables and even eggs. But, Kooma is best-known for their sushi, and to that end we suggest the maki combo - three rolls for $13. Our go-to is a spicy tuna, a Philly and a California. Bon Bon Sushi The thing about Bon Bon Sushi is that

they have affordable prices for their food any time of day, not strictly lunch. Their sushi rolls are always one for $5, but if you get two or more, the price drops to $4. and if you get more than one roll, they’re $4 each. It’s a super reasonable price, all day ever day. It’s nothing fancy, but that’s the point—place your order, pop in, pay and be on your way. Restaurant 51 Restaurant 51 on Church Street offers a huge selection of dishes on their lunch menu for just $6. You can order their

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house salad, Caesar salad, mini hummus platter, buffalo chicken wrap, Southwest chicken wrap, chicken Caesar wrap, turkey club sandwich, a burger, or 51’s pork belly street tacos Tuesday through Friday from 11am–2pm, and it’ll only cost you $6. Head chef Phil Lopolito is as floored with the pricing as we are. “It’s hard to get a $6 lunch ar McDonald’s anymore,” he says. “And, our portions are big and we’re scratch-making almost everything in the restaurant now, so the value is really there.” Benny’s Pizza Stopping in at Benny’s Pizza, you’ll almost always find owner Sal Inzone behind the counter or in front of a grill. Sal greets every customer with a smile and recognizes all his regulars, which makes coming into Benny’s such a welcoming experience. Whether it’s your first time popping in or your hundredth, you’ll feel right at home at Benny’s. But, back to the reason we’re writing about them in this feature: their $6 lunch specials are available every day until 3pm! You can order anything from their lunch specials menu and snag a soft drink, and it’ll only run you $6! The lunch specials selection includes things like two slices of cheese pizza with fries, or one of their cheese steaks or cold hoagies (also with fries). You can try their wings or tenders, or even a mini ‘boli or pepperoni stick (they come with fries, too), and you’ll still be out the door for the same $6. Trust us, it’s plenty of food and it’s worth every penny. Carmine’s Pizzeria Walking in the pizzeria, there’s usually a bustle of activity and the aromatic scent of freshly-baked dough wafting towards you. You’ll have to leave downtown West Chester, but if you’ve got the time and you want a proper, filling meal, Carmine’s is a good go-to. From 10am-4pm every weekday, try out one of Carmine’s lunch specials for $9. Whether it’s baked ziti, a fiesta salad, a sandwich, or chicken parmesan with spaghetti, you’ll know you’re getting bang for your buck. The options are almost overwhelming—strombolis, wings, steaks, and that hardly does the menu justice. Plus, it’s BYOB and they’ve got a cooler of cold ones available. We won’t judge.

Yes, the above two are options on Restaurant 51’s lunch special menu, and while the Sundae isn’t $6, we still suggest you try it! photos Amy Tucker

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Design Dilemmas Andrea Mason of Perceptions Interiors is a professional interior designer who wants to help you upgrade your space

As time passes, we accumulate more and more things. You move from home to home, each time increasing in size. Now you’re left wondering how you ever fit into that first small apartment. Sound familiar? There are so many ways that you can increase the functionality and storage in your existing home. If you are thinking you may need a new place because your current one is busting at the seams, I have a few tips and tricks to help organize your life. Clear the Clutter: The first thing to think about is donating or throwing out stuff that you are no longer using or that don’t hold value to you. The Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up is a book that offers readers a step-by-step guide to simplifying, organizing and storing. Author Marie Kondo explains that if things do not “spark joy” in your life, then those items should no longer be in your life. Closet Organizers: The place where you will get the most bang for your buck when creating more storage is in your closets. I suggest the IKEA closet systems, as well as the Elfa system, which you can purchase at The Container Store. These systems utilize every nook and cranny. Both of these stores also carry organizational systems for your cupboards and drawers in your kitchen and bathrooms. Furniture with Storage: Pretty much any piece of furniture can be turned into functional storage. Coffee tables, end tables, and consoles are the most helpful with drawers or shelves. Bench seating and ottomans can store miscellaneous items hanging around the house. Your bed can even contain storage with drawers or a lift system. Wall storage is a smart idea by using medicine cabinets in the bathroom and floating shelves or cabinetry throughout the house. Built-Ins: Built-in bookshelves and cabinet space can be a tremendous space saver in houses. It’s a more expensive option, but if you know that you will be living somewhere for a while, then it is a great investment. Built-ins are fabulous because they utilize an entire wall from floor to ceiling maximizing your storage potential. Think of all of the things you can organize and store efficiently! Attics, Garages, and Basements: If you are lucky enough to have one of these three spaces, then it can either be a blessing or a curse! It’s a great place where you can store things away that you will not be using in the near future, but don’t get too carried away. Pack things in air-tight containers with labels so that you can remember what treasures are stored where. Also make sure to create a habit of annually sifting through your storage area and know when to finally purge things that are no longer important. So, just when you thought you have outgrown your current living situation, think again! With a few design changes you will be wondering where all of this extra space came from. —amason@thewcpress.com

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Bartender of the

Month

PHOTO Amy Tucker INTERVIEW Skye McDonald

We get to know Danielle Walz and find out why her job bartendering at Ryan’s Pub means more to her than just a paycheck. How long have you been working at Ryan’s? About 5 and 1/2 years. How did you get started? I started here as a waitress. I already knew Drew, who works here, and he helped me get the job. What do you like about working at Ryan’s? Probably everyone I work with. It’s like a giant family. What do you like about working in West Chester? The atmosphere. It’s young and fun. It makes me feel young still. Do you have a favorite drink? I like to drink Tito’s and club or Tito’s and water... or the Delco Special.

What’s the Delco Special? It’s white wine and club soda. It’s like a wine spritzer. So what’s better about bartending versus waitressing? You get to interact with more people and more different age groups. With waitressing, you’re just checking on the tables every now and then, but behind the bar, you’re always there, and it’s interesting to hear different people’s life stories. Do you think it’s busier bartending? Definitely. Especially late night, too. What would you say is your busiest time? Probably happy hour. We’re pretty busy, especially Thursday and Friday happy hours. Then it’ll slow down for a couple of hours, and then later, like 10pm, 11pm, it’ll pick up again. It can get crazy busy. Has there been anyone that’s stood out from the rest? Probably all of my regulars. They’re in here all the time, and they’re the ones I know best. So you really get to forge connections with your regulars? Yes. And there’s a lot of college kids that are in here pretty much every week that I recognize. A lot of them stay up here during the summer, so it’s nice to see familiar faces.

What’s been most memorable for you? Probably all the people that I’ve met through work. We’re all close friends. How have you improved as a bartender? When I started out, I was more shy and nervous to make drinks or anything. Always asking questions. But now, I have no problem doing anything. I’m definitely more comfortable behind the bar. Do you have a favorite food on the menu? I love all of our food! The prime rib is really good, and I love the hot roast beef sandwiches. The nachos are amazing, I could eat them all the time. Has there been a really funny moment among your coworkers? My birthday last year, someone that used to work here brought all the cakes in the back, all the desserts, and lit all the candles and sang on my birthday to me. And the bar was packed and everyone sang. It was funny, but everyone was staring at me! If you could choose any other job, would you? Maybe. I like doing makeup a lot. But I just love Ryan’s. It’s fun. Even when I’m not working, I’m usually here. So it really is like your second home? Yeah. It’s a fun place to be.

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Home

Becca Boyd shares tips on life and cooking on her blog at homebeccanomics.com

Beccanomics

It’s back to school and busy schedules. These granola bars are super healthy and beat the pants off any store-bought variety. They work as well for breakfast as an afternoon snack, and you’ll probably use them for both. Next up, a sanity-saving dinner option—nothing satiates like chili, nor freezes quite so well. Make a double batch of this fiber and protein packed meal—serve one now and freeze one for later! Chocolate Chia Cherry Granola Bars makes 15-18 bars 4 c. oats 2 1/2 tsp. cinnamon 1 c. walnuts, chopped 1 1/4 tsp. kosher salt 1/2 c. unsweetened coconut 1 c. honey 1/2 c. chia seeds 1/3 c. coconut oil 1 c. dried cherries 2 tsp. vanilla extract 3/4 c. dark chocolate chips 1/4 tsp. almond extract 1/2 c. almond flour 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread oats on a rimmed baking sheet. If room (or on a second sheet), spread walnuts and coconut. Bake for 12 -15 minutes or until toasted. 2. Meanwhile, combine chia seeds, cherries, chocolate, almond flour, cinnamon and salt in a large mixing bowl and stir to combine. 3. In a small glass bowl, combine honey and coconut oil. Microwave to soften coconut oil, about 30 seconds, and whisk to combine. 4. Add vanilla and almond extracts to honey/oil mixture and whisk to combine. 5. When oats/nuts/coconut are toasted, add to bowl with chocolate and chia seeds. Stir to combine. Add honey mixture to bowl and stir until evenly coated. 6. Line a 9x13 baking pan with parchment paper. Pour mixture into prepared pan and press evenly. 7. Bake for 20 minutes or until the top is golden. Let cool completely at room temperature, then cut into bars. Store in fridge. White Bean Chicken Chili serves 8-10 6 (14 oz) cans cannelini beans, to taste drained and rinsed, divided 1/4 tsp. black pepper 1 tbsp. vegetable oil 2 tbsp. cumin 2 jalapeno peppers, minced 1 tbsp. ground coriander 4 poblano peppers, chopped 2 tsp. ancho chili powder 2 onions, diced 6 c. chicken broth 8 cloves garlic, minced Juice of 2 limes 1/2 tsp. kosher salt, plus more

1. Purée

beans from three cans in food processor or blender (add a bit of water as needed to blend). 2. Heat vegetable oil in large soup pot over medium high heat. Add jalapenos, poblanos, onions, garlic, salt and pepper and stir to combine. Cook until softened, about 10 minutes. 3. Add cumin, coriander, and chili powder and stir to combine. Cook two minutes. 4. Add chicken broth and lime juice and bring to a boil. 5. Reduce to simmer and add beans (and bean puree). Simmer for 20 minutes. 6. Add chicken and cilantro and stir. Taste for salt. Cook until heated through and serve, topped with chips and cheese. –bboyd@thewcpress.com

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story Skye McDonald photos Amy Tucker

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Walt Taylor & Matt Harnett

are a staple of the US diet, and every pub, pizza joint and purveyor of American cuisine has their own take on it. The restaurants of West Chester are no exception. From Ram’s Head’s Bourbon Glazed, to Side Bar’s Thai Chili and all the Buffalo in-between, the borough is serving up all kinds of fried (and sometimes baked or grilled) goodness. So, we decided to take one for the team and taste test the wings from West Chester’s most popular joints. We ordered dozens from 10 local kitchens and invited our friends over to chow down on the condition that they share their opinions with you, our readers. We’ve also gone ahead and ranked the wings according to size, heat and style of preparation, so you can sort out your favorites based on individual preference. These are our messy, messy results:

Nestled in one of East Gay Street’s shopping centers, America’s Pie serves up plenty of ‘za, but as their slogan says, they’re “So much more than pizza.” Their sandwiches and salads are all top notch, and every one of their 10 flavors of wings is a winner. Our personal favorites were the Parmesan Garlic.

Size: Medium Heat: d Preparation: Fried “It’s Italy in a wing.” –Alyssa Oxner “This wing is amazing. I usually only go for spicy. It’s an untraditional take on the wing, but they nailed it.” –Jon Young

Barnaby’s is packed every weekend, and their Wednesday Wing Night is pretty popular, too. Orders of wings are just $5, and they serve up $3 Goose Island pints to wash them down. (Editor’s Note: blatant plug ahead) And, you can stick around after your meal to play Quizzo with our own DJ Romeo. They serve their wings whole or boneless and in nine different flavors, of which the crowd favorite is their Bangin’ Thai.

Size: Medium Spiciness: ddd Preparation: Fried “These wings had a creamy start with a kick at a medium level.” –Alyssa Oxner

“Superior flavor combination. It’s amazing, delicious wing.” –Matt Harnett

“Really good. They were buttery with a mild kick after eating” –Katie Donals

“A spectacularly savory wing—cheesy with a healthy dose of diced garlic, well-balanced by chopped parsley.” –Jordan Patterson

“These wings are reason enough to go to Barnaby’s at least once a week.” –Skye McDonald

“Tasted like chicken Parmesan in a wing.” –Alexa Pell

“It’s like they took a Thai Chili recipe and were like, ‘You know what this needs? More heat.’” –Nick Vecchio

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Brother’s Pizza & Pasta is that classic Italian joint that every town needs. They offer up gourmet pizzas, big bowls of salad, and heaping portions of perfectly seasoned pastas. Their wings ain’t bad either, and since they’re coming out of the oven instead of the fryer, they’re a bit healthier than the competition. They use only Tyson chicken, and you can order 10 of their jumbo chicken wings for just $9.95.

Size: Large Spiciness: d Preparation: Baked “It’s like someone took all the best parts of a roasted chicken and broke it down into ten snack-sized pieces.” –Dan Mathers “They have a small kick.” –Alyssa Oxner “They’re pretty meaty.” –Katie Donals “This wing is for true meat-lovers. There was so much meat and flavor.” –Skye McDonald

Like we said before, chicken wings are classic Americana, so we expected big things from this establishment. Frankly, they served up a surprise, actually offering us their Thai Chili wings. But hey, what’s more American than borrowing from other cultures and repurposing them to fit your own needs? And, Landmark did just that, putting their own twist on this tried and true combo. If you wanna give them a shot, we suggest stopping in on Wednesdays when wings are just 50 cents a piece.

Tony Deimler

Size: Medium Spiciness: dd Preparation: Fried “These are your solid, archetypal wings at a medium heat level.” –Alex Roldan “A little savory and a little tangy with medium heat.” –Jordan Patterson “They were spicy with a nice after taste.” – Katie Donals “The heat does a great job of balancing out the sweetness.” –Nick Vecchio

“The heat does a great job of balancing out the sweetness.” Laure Casimir, Katie Donals & Leslie Entzler

The American whiskey market has skyrocketed in the past decade, and the majority of that is due to bourbon’s popularity. Smart gastro pubs like Ram’s Head are capitalizing on this trend by taking the whiskey out of the glass and onto the plate, serving up awesome dishes like their bourbon-glazed wings. Stop by on Sundays and Wednesdays for their special wing deals, including half-priced wings all day Sundays and 50-cent wings from 5pm to midnight on Wednesdays.

Size: Large Spiciness: d Preparation: Baked “These wings had a sweet and tangy sauce. Very good for someone who doesn’t like spice.” –Alexa Pell “As far as sweet sauce wings go, they are spectacular. Sweet bourbon is the major overwhelming flavor for these.” –Alex Roldan “It’s a large, meaty wing with a sweet, barbecue flavor. That’s my meal.” –Walt Taylor

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For the most part, Ryan’s is exactly what they claim to be—a classic, family-owned Irish Pub. They’ve got the decor down to a T, the slightly dim, cozy lighting, and even a couple of bartenders who are almost too sarcastic but know how to perfectly toe the line. Where they differ from other Irish pubs is that they’ve actually got great food. We tried their Bee Sting wings, which are a great combination of sweet honey and heat. The best time to try them is Wednesday nights when you can snag five wings for just $2.

Size: Large Spiciness: dd Preparation: Fried

You figure, if a restaurant has a signature sauce with their name on it, then it’s probably a darn good sauce. So, when Saloon 151 offered us wings coated in their 151 sauce, we weren’t going to pass up the opportunity. They’ve got 10 other flavors on their Whiskey Bar Wings menu, and you can snag an order of these sizeable wings for $9 any day of the week. Side note: the Saloon Sandwich also comes with 151 Sauce and is also incredible.

Size: Large Spiciness: d Preparation: Fried

“They were sweet at first with a kick of heat. I dig them.” –Alex Roldan

“They weren’t spicy, but the sauce and the meat are well balanced. Neither overpowering the other.” –Ian Brastow

“There was a nice balance of flavors, sweet and spicy—perfect for those who like a little kick.” –Alexa Pell

“These were full of flavor. The perfect wing for someone who doesn’t like traditional heat.” –Tony Deimler

“There was a sweet honey beginning with an introduction of a mild heat after the second bite.” –Alyssa Oxner

“They were sweet and tangy with a touch of smoke. Crispy in all the right places.” –Jordan Patterson

“It was nice and meaty with a nice sweet and sassy kick to it.” –Matt Harnett

“The perfect mix of spicy and sweet.” –Jack Chovanes

Located a short, scenic drive outside the borough, right past Highland Orchards, Righteous Tap House is positioned among West Chester’s gorgeous rolling hills. They recently celebrated their first birthday, and if they keep serving up apps like the Chipotle Barbecue wings we tried (and pairing that with a killer draft selection), we’re confident they’ve got many more birthdays to come. We suggest taking a trek out there on Thursdays when wings are half-priced all day.

Size: Large Spiciness: d Preparation: Fried “They have the ideal amount of barbeque sauce, but it’s not overwhelming” –Jack Chovanes “They’re slightly sweet with a savory, spicy blend.” –Jordan Patterson “It’s a smoky, meaty, and flavorful wing” – Matt Harnett

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Ian Brastow, Alyssa Oxner, Walt Taylor, Tony Deimler, Alexander Roldan, Katie Donals, Nick Vecchio, Laure Casimir, Jack Chovanes, Jordan Patterson

This restaurant is probably best known for their extensive beer selection, but they also turn out some high-quality cuisine. Some spots just toss their wings in the fryer and call it quits, but Side Bar goes above and beyond, topping their Thai Chili wings with chopped peanuts, cilantro and green onions, making for one of the fanciest foods we’ve ever eaten with our fingers.

Size: Large Spiciness: d Preparation: Fried “The peanut flavor was a good and unique choice.” –Ian Brastow

When it comes to wings, everybody serves some version of the classic Buffalo flavor, so it takes something special to stand out from the crowd. Split Rail takes the classic recipe and executes it perfectly. If you’re a chicken wing purist, the kind of person who only orders hot Buffalo and who knows that the answer is always bleu cheese and never ranch, than Split Rail is your go-to. If you’re really courageous, you might even try a big-bodied beer off their ever-rotating draft list and kick up the heat another notch.

Size: Medium Spiciness: dd Preparation: Fried “These are perfect for a party. Not too big, great flavor, tender and juicy.” –Walt Taylor “The perfect combination of spice and heat without overwhelming the palate.” –Tony Deimler “The tender meat was well-seasoned.” –Alyssa Oxner “Not too spicy, but very flavorful with a slight tanginess.” –Alex Roldan

“Good mixture of Asian spice with an American classic.” –Alexa Pell “It was a unique wing with mild heat. The peanuts and the cilantro were a nice touch.” –Jordan Patterson “They were very tangy and had continuous flavor throughout.” –Tony Deimler “A delicious addition of peanuts and cilantro to a tender, saucy wing.” –Alyssa Oxner

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Spot the five differences between these images, and send your answer to contests@thewcpress.com for your chance to win a Barnaby’s gift certificate. Congrats to August winner, Elizabeth McKeown., who says she’ll be sharing the prize with her son, Logan. You hear that, Logan? You win, too!

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September Playlist DJ Romeo curates a list of the tracks you’ll be enjoying all month long The following is a list of songs that will take over the radio stations in the next few months. You’ll soon know them by heart and play them ‘til they’re tired. But, good news: you can download them first and look like the cool musical genius to all of your friends. djromeo@thewcpress.com

www.djromeo.fm | @DJRomeo24

Marshmello ft. Khalid – “Silence” Justin Bieber ft. BloodPop – “Friends” Camila Cabello ft. Young Thug – “Havana” Cardi B – “Bodak Yellow” Old Dominion – “Not Everything’s About You” Miley Cyrus – “Younger Now” Bebe Rexha ft. Florida Georgia Line – “Meant to Be” Chris Brown – “Questions” DJ Envy ft. DJ Sliink & Fetty Wap – “Text Ur Number” P!nk – “What About Us” Avicci ft. Sandro Cavazza – “Without You” Liam Gallagher – “For What It’s Worth” Thomas Rhett – “Unforgettable” Fifth Harmony – “Angel” Skip Marley – “Refugee” Liz Huett – “STFU & Hold Me” Macklemore ft. Lil Yachty – “Marmalade” Kip Moore – “Blonde” Why Don’t We – “Something Different” Sabrina Carpenter – “Why” Weezer – “Mexican Fender” Jessie J – “Real Deal” Jack Johnson – “Sunsets For Somebody Else” Miquela – “Not Mine” Wiz Khalifa ft. Ty Dolla $ign – “Something New” Queens of the Stone Age – “The Evil Has Landed” Fat Joe ft. Dre – “So Excited” Rachel Platten – “Broken Glass” Harry Styles – “Two Ghosts” Avicii ft. Rita Ora – “Lonely Together”

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Profile for The WC Press

The WC Press Edible West Chester - September 2017  

The Voice of the Borough

The WC Press Edible West Chester - September 2017  

The Voice of the Borough