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New vegan spots offer different menus, slice of personal health victories
Two vegan eateries in the area are hitting the scene with very different menu offerings, but share inspiring stories of overcoming major health scares.
At Boardwalk Vegan in Havertown, husband and wife team Kris and Randy Sumey make seashore faves, served up reimagined and vegan.
From pizza and hot dogs to waffles and ice cream, you will find it on their extensive vegan menu.
Kris had been vegetarian for years, but Randy went vegan after his doctor warned him about his diabetes.
Both are now vegan, and Randy credits his change in diet to a beneficial response to his recent cancer scare.
In South Philly at The Classics Hub, owner Ulysses Kae Williams had what he considered a really bad diet that was meat-prominent.
When he was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer and given months to live, he took a year off and changed to a vegan diet.
Now he is approaching the opening of Fresh Jawn, a juice and smoothie bar inside his longstanding barber business.
The menu will feature all the recipes he used to turn his health around. (pictured: Owner Ulysses Kae Williams in his soon-to-open Fresh Jawn)
Fresh Jawn at The Classics Unisex Salon and Hub | Instagram | Bookings and Information
2116 S. Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19145
Boardwalk Vegan | Instagram | Facebook
28 N. Manoa Road, Havertown, PA 19083
Fishtown welcomes vegan gelato spot, Float Dreamery
Every Saturday from noon-3 p.m., you'll find Jacob Livingston and his girlfriend, Erica Knauss, selling their Float Dreamery gelato from a side window at Castellino's Italian Market.
Jacob makes all of the ice cream. Erica is a product designer and the maker of all of the gluten-free cookies, cakes and marshmallow fluffs that get mixed into the ice cream.
Together they have a simple goal.
"We've been trying to make the best gelato/ice cream in general," Jacob says, "and I think we've done it."
The standard base is coconut and oat milk, and they promise that it doesn't have that overtly coconut taste that is common in vegan ice creams.
For flavors, they like to take something familiar and twist it into something "a little bit more exciting."
"Birthday Cake we lit on fire," Erica says. "We were just like, why don't we torch the marshmallow fluff instead of frosting?"
There's also a Gator Rainbow flavor made with "six naturally occurring colors in the Gatorade spectrum." They sell by the pint and also make ice cream sandwiches, and they soon hope to offer soft serve and pints daily at Castellino's.
The couple met in Brooklyn but migrated to Fishtown during the pandemic, looking for a more affordable place to live and work.
And while they're focused on making the neighborhood happy for now, their dream is to sell Float Dreamery up and down the East Coast.
Float Dreamery | Instagram
1255 E Palmer Street, Philadelphia, PA 19125
Pickup Saturdays, noon-3pm at Castellino's Italian Market
Profi's Creperie packs dessert and a show at Reading Terminal
Walk through the 12th street entrance of Reading Terminal Market, and the sweet and savory smells will tell you you've arrived at Profi's Creperie.
There, you'll meet Ornel Profi. The 20-year-old runs the stand passed down to him from his father, who learned how to make crepes with his mother when he was in Greece.
At Profi's you can choose from their signature sweet or savory crepes.
Popular sweet crepes include the banana, strawberry and Nutella as well as the berries cheesecake crepe.
For savory, customers love the chicken tomato and pesto.
You can also choose from breakfast crepes like a bacon, egg and cheese or create your own. Ornel loves when his customers get creative and he says you can treat the crepe just like a sandwich, 'put whatever you want in it.'
Profi's Creperie | Facebook| Instagram
Hours: Monday-Saturday 8AM- 6PM. Sundays 9 AM-5 PM
Puddin Palace has pudding, creative dessert options fit for a king
When LaGracia Givings and Miranda Jordan outgrew their small home-based dessert business in May, they pivoted and opened Puddin Palace in Oaklyn, N.J.
"We had over 20 to 30 people come into our house a day," explains Jordan. "You can imagine how many times we give our address out, so it got a little stressful."
The original recipe that kept the orders rolling in at The Puddin Palace was Givings'.
"We started out with classic banana pudding and we just tweaked it. We decided to start pairing it with different things," says LaGracia Givings.
Now, they have created 25 flavors of their delicious pudding. Some of their signature flavors are caramel vanilla frappe, strawberry shortcake, and red velvet cake. Also on the menu are cheesecakes such as Cinnamon Toast crunch and Fruity Pebbles.
But that's not all.
"We have cupcakes from strawberry shortcake down to vanilla caramel frappe," adds Jordan.
So when your sweet tooth hits, the options are plentiful at The Puddin Palace.
The Puddin Palace | Facebook | Instagram
211 W Clinton Ave, Oaklyn, NJ 08107
See Eastern State Penitentiary at night with Summer Twilight Tours
The Summer Twilight Tour at Eastern State Penitentiary is a self-guided audio journey narrated by actor Steve Buscemi.
The tour of America's first prison offers a glimpse into the 200-year-old building's historic past and a chance to explore the 10-a-half-acre grounds at night.
Al Capone's infamous cellblock is also refurbished in light of some recent findings about how the gangster lived.
There are works from 13 artists on display, including a two-story-high installation on mass incarceration, that is the centerpiece of their latest edition, The Fair Chance Beer Garden.
There's a new pop-up shop from Grant Boulevard, and lots of activities to engage in, such as writing postcards to prisoners, quilting and free yoga meditation on Friday nights by Yoga 4 Philly.
Eastern State Penitentiary's Night Tours: Summer Twilight | Facebook | Instagram
2027 Fairmount Avenue, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19130
Eastern State's "Night Tours: Summer Twilight" runs Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings until September 4th
Tickets for Night Tours: Summer Twilight are $19 for Thursday evenings, $26 for Friday evenings, and $32 for Saturday evenings.
Tickets are available online and at the door; however, it's strongly recommended purchasing your tickets online in advance
Try Pig's Blood Gelato, raise money for a good cause
When Ember and Ash restaurant opened on East Passyunk avenue at the end of 2020, the chef-owners had a mission of using all parts of the animals and vegetables
"We coined a phrase snout to root," says chef and co-owner Scott Calhoun.
From day one, they put a pig's blood pudding on the menu.
it is a southern Italian tradition called Sanguinaccio dolce, with the blood working in place of egg as a thickener.
The collaboration is the latest round in Tag Time Happy Hour, a rotating series of restaurant fundraisers for the LUNGevity Foundation, an organization that provides funding for lung cancer research.
$2 from every sale of the pigs' blood gelato goes to the fund.
The campaign was started by Kristina Burke after her husband, Chef Jim Burke, was diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer, last August.
And she did it while battling cancer herself. Kristina was diagnosed with breast cancer in the fall of 2019.
The Tag Time name came from Jim's treatment, a medication he takes every day at 5pm.
Tag Time Happy Hour | Website | LUNGevity Donor Drive | Instagram
Ember & Ash Restaurant | Website | Facebook | Instagram
1520 E Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19147
Hosting Tag time happy hour through September 4th in collaboration with:
Chef Janine Bruno: Homamade by Bruno| Website | Facebook | Instagram
Dan Good Jerky in Delco is a small batch company making beef jerky
Dan McKenna is the self-taught chef behind Dan Good Jerky, a small batch craft company preparing beef jerky and other specialty items.
For his jerky, McKenna starts with USDA-inspected black angus beef top round that he sources from South Philly.
He slices it, marinates it for 48 hours and then uses a dehydrator to make it into the jerky his customers know and love. Dan Good Jerky contains no preservatives, sugars, or salt.
McKenna says it's just 'great meat with flavor and texture.' His snacks come in six different flavors; Original Teriyaki, Wasabi Ginger, Carolina Reaper, Black Pepper Garlic, Spicy Cayenne and the Candied Mocha Maple, which is more of a breakfast jerky.
In addition to the jerky, McKenna and his wife, Kathy, also make fresh Italian sausage and bacon that they sell.
Since the pandemic put a stop to selling their meats at farmers' markets and festivals, The McKennas have now created a pop-up dining restaurant in their outdoor space called the Barking Dog Garden Patio.
Where customers can see McKenna cook right before their eyes in their own private areas (perfect for social distancing) featuring a different menu every week. You can meet Charlie, the pup behind the name and it's BYOB.
To reserve a table at the Barking Dog Garden Patio, you can call (484) 724-4389 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dan Good Jerky | Facebook| Instagram
The 'Crab Lady' opens popular Crab Cravers food truck in Wilmington
She's known as the "neighborhood crab lady."
Yolanda Parson recently opened up her new food truck for business at in Wilmington - and she's already a big hit.
"I sell out every day," she said. "Every time I come out here, I sell out."
Crab Cravers food truck flavors the crabs in their signature family-created seasoning and the proof is in the pudding - or should we say crabs.
Customers say they feel like they are part of the family when they step up to the Crab Cravers window.
Parson says she knows her vision and where she's heading, so she just knew she needed to open a food truck.
"I want to thank God for this because this is exactly what I prayed for," she said.
Crab Cravers food truck | Instagram
1600 North East Boulevard, Wilmington, Delaware
Get a dose of art, history, free beer on the Mural Arts walking tour
Mural Arts Philadelphia has launched a new "neighborhood" walking tour designed to showcase what the organization calls the world's largest outdoor art gallery.
The "Mural Mile Center City Walking Tour" has been the non-profit's staple tour.
But now, Mural Arts is offering three neighborhood tours as well.
The "West Philly Inspired Tour" highlights inspirational figures in the city's history.
This 1,100-square-foot mural titled the "Silent Watcher" is like a maternal figure at the gateway to University City.
The "Bella Vistas Walking Tour" tells the stories of people who exemplify Philadelphia's pioneering spirit and grit, such as Octavius Catto.
The Spring Garden Tour ends at Yards Brewery, where tour participants are treated to a FREE beer.
All of the walking tours last about 90 minutes.
Mural Arts Tours Philadelphia | Instagram | Facebook
Upcoming Neighborhood Walking Tours Schedule:
Spring into the Arts Walking Tour - August 21
New Bella Vistas Walking Tour - August 22
Mural Mile Center City Walking Tour - August 21
West Philly-Inspired Walking Tour - August 28
Philadelphia Fashion Incubator celebrating decade of design with popup sale
The Philadelphia Fashion incubator has a new exhibit at InLiquid Gallery in Kensington called Illume.
The works of 23 current and former Fashion Incubator designers are on display through September 10th. There's also a retail popup so you can shop their collections.
There are coats are from luxury ready-to-wear designer, Deborah Ann Mack along with clothing, accessories and bridal wear.
More than 50 designers have graduated from The Philadelphia Fashion Incubator in the past decade. The incubator is a year-long residency program that helps designers build their businesses in Philadelphia.
"My ultimate dream for my company honestly is to build a brand that eventually will be global," says Deborah Ann Mack of DAM Fashion, a current designer-in-residence at the incubator.
Illume: Philadelphia Fashion incubator | Website
Through September 10
InLiquid Art Gallery, Crane Arts Building
1400 N. American street, #314, Philadelphia, Pa. 19122
Philadelphia Fashion Incubator | Website | Fashpreneurs Program
Deborah Ann Mack Fashion | Website | Instagram
Conrad Booker | Website | Instagram
Cuba Libre celebrating national rum month with drink deals
August is National Rum Month and Cuba Libre Restaurant and Rum Bar can help you celebrate.
The Cuba Libre is a rum and coke with lime, and all month long, the restaurant is donating 50 percent of sales from each cocktail to benefit the Cuba SOS movement.
On August 16th, for National Rum day, you can get 50 % off all rum drinks. That includes 16 varieties of mojitos and 80 to 90 kinds of rum.
"There are three things that belong to the Cuban culture: coffee, tobacco and rum, and they go together ... it's a trilogy of the Cuban culture," says Chef-Partner Guillermo Pernot.
Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar | Facebook | Instagram
10 S 2nd St, Philadelphia, PA 19106