Philly food is so much more than cheesesteaks. Let us show you.
I’ve known Lee Porter for a few years now, thanks to our shared love of local food and beer. Lee is perfect for this section, because he is all over the place: he interviews locals for his website Chocolate Covered Memories, he writes for a ton of different publications, he does the yearly list of where to find craft beer at Citizens Bank Park, and he is a beer rep. Somehow, he also finds time to produce, write, and direct short film series My Ruined Life. And when he’s not doing all of those things, he’s eating and drinking.
How long have you been part of the food scene in Philadelphia, and what drew you to it?
I launched ChocolateCoveredMemories.com in September of 2011, featuring interviews and recipe-sharing with those in the food world. I was drawn to it, because I love writing and connecting with community. I wanted to share the stories behind the people in the industry, which no one was really doing on a consistent basis at the time. In 2012, I began posting the locations of all the craft beer at Phillies games (as well as Sunday Funday drink specials at Philly bars) and have not stopped since, and those locators really put me on the map, so to speak. Additionally, I have written for LivingSocial, Amazon Local and restaurant profiles for Food Network‘s now-defunct site CityEats.com. Currently, I am also the Philadelphia beer reporter for Ale Street News, and all of this has led to me being recently hired to be Philly’s sales manager for Two Roads Brewing Co. (Stratford, CT).
What is your perfect day of Philly food – breakfast, lunch, and dinner?
This question is tough. Off the top of my head … Breakfast: Knead Bagels. Lunch: anything and everything at Reading Terminal Market, especially a hoagie at Salumeria or any sandwich at Paesano’s. Dinner at any of the following: Russet, Matyson, The Pickled Heron, Khyber Pass Pub, Good Dog, Cheu, Varga Bar. Late Night: bahn mi tacos at Jose Pistola’s or cheesesteaks and waffle fries at Locust Rendezvous.
If you only had $10 to spend on a single food item in Philadelphia, what would you get?
Probably a turkey hoagie with regular provolone, house dressing and the works (including artichokes) at Salumeria in RTM.
Where would you take an out-of-towner to get a true taste of Philadelphia?
RTM, Paesano’s and Dalessandro’s. Cheesesteak empanadas at Good Dog, too.
What is your favorite food event in Philly?
Hands down, Brewer’s Plate is my favorite. It brings excellent local beer and food together. The sense of community at this event is so welcoming. It speaks volumes about the Philly food/beer community, where everyone is helping each other out, sharing, instead of competing with one another. Plus, the food and beers can’t be beat!
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