Philadelphia is full of incredible restaurants, but navigating through them all can be overwhelming. I recently sat down with USA TODAY to narrow down my six favorite places to eat in the City of Brotherly Love. Spoiler alert; Termini Brothers Bakery, Vietnam Restaurant & Café and Tio Pepe Restaurant & Bar all made my list. A stand out dish would be the paella from Tio Pepe Restaurant & Bar. It has incredible flavor!
This past year was one for the record books. Open Table included Double Knot by the Schulson Collective in their list of the top 100 best restaurants in the country and Eater Philly named Michal Schulson and Nina Tinari Restaurant Empire Builders of the Year! We are so incredibly thankful to the editors and readers for the great recognition and look forward to future endeavors.
The best cure for long winter days is a great happy hour. Schulson Collective restaurant, Double Knot in Philadelphia, offers a great daily happy hour featuring hand rolls, dumpling varieties, tasty sides and more for great prices. It’s the perfect excuse to skip your ordinary dinner plans and unwind after a long day at work.
When looking at my culinary portfolio many people have asked me, “why Asian cuisine?” After graduating from The Culinary Institute of America and making my way up the culinary chain of command, I traveled to Japan and worked in prestigious Tokyo kitchens like Spago and the Four Seasons Hotel. While a student of Asian cuisine, I learned how to emphasize flavor over fat. Now I can say I’m proud to bring that approach to all Schulson Collective restaurants.
Sampan, Schulson Collective’s very first Philadelphia venture, has officially been open for nine years! Located in the heart of Center City, Sampan serves an oasis of contemporary Asian small plates and a curated selection of wine, beer, sake and cocktails. After eight more restaurants, the opening of Schulson Catering and many other milestones, the wild ride has been one I wouldn’t change for the world. A big thank you to my family, friends and fellow chefs for all of your constant support.
Every chef has a go-to dish, whether we like to admit it or not. One of my favorite entrees to make and enjoy is a simple spaghetti with meatballs and sausage in gravy. It’s delicious in every variety and never too complicated to make. It’s also my inspiration for Giuseppe & Sons, a Philadelphia ristorante where classic Italian tradition meets sophisticated, Roman style.
Think Magazine recently featured Monkitail, a Schulson Collective restaurant in South Florida located inside of the gorgeous Diplomat Beach Resort. This modern restaurant specializes in fresh Japanese fare with a twist. In the article, Think Magazine calls Monkitail a not-so-hidden gem that’s definitely worth a visit. A big thank you to my amazing team at Monkitail for making this unique eatery such a success!
Now that Giuseppe & Sons is up and running, it’s time to focus to Alpen Rose. This brand new steak boutique will celebrate old-world Italian roots, lifestyle, food and décor. We’re projected to open on 13th Street in the Rittenhouse neighborhood of Philadelphia near Double Knot and Sampan this coming Spring, so stay tuned.
Meals cooked at home don’t always have to be made from scratch. Life gets busy and sometimes our kids prefer something simple. My boys have always remained loyal to Kraft Mac and Cheese and there’s nothing wrong with that. Although, Rooster's Comb Mac & Cheese from Schulson Collective restaurant, Harp & Crown, in Philadelphia is one of my favorites!
DK Sushi offers patrons a fine casual experience in Philadelphia. Here you have the choice of taking your sushi to-go or sitting down and enjoying traditional omakase, meaning “I’ll leave it up to you”.
Opposites often attract in the culinary world. The Tuna Rice Cracker served at Double Knot is the perfect combination of crunchy and smooth textures. Featuring spicy tuna, soy, chili, nori and avocado puree, this small plate always satisfies.
A dry aging room is one of my favorite restaurant tools. The process is ideal for tenderizing and removing moisture from meat. As we prepare to open Alpen Rose, a steak boutique in Philadelphia, we chose this technique to serve the highest quality meats.
Pro Tip: Use a charcoal grill when cooking dry aged meat at home; it will help burn off the fat and boost flavor.
I had the pleasure of kicking off this year’s NYC Wine and Food Festival at Food Talk with Geoffrey Zakarian on Sirius XM. I also had the opportunity to meet The Kitchen cohost Jeff Mauro and Cake Boss Buddy Valastro. It was wonderful to meet all of you!…
Whipped ricotta is one of my favorite spreads. It pairs well with fruit, bread, vegetables and other cheeses. A simple, but delicious combination is whipped ricotta and grilled bread. This dish is served daily at my restaurant, Harp & Crown, in Philadelphia. Easy to make and even easier to enjoy….
Giuseppe & Sons by Schulson Collective is making a lot of progress. My latest Philadelphia venture will be an all-day ristorante featuring classic Italian tradition, sophistication and Roman style cuisine. I have to thank Wesley Field and Leo Fornea for all that they are doing to make this place great. Stay tuned for our grand opening date!…..
It was an honor to participate in Michael’s Giving Hand Golf Outing. This important foundation is dedicated to bringing awareness to anxiety and depression in teens and supports community outreach programs. Thank you to Tony Peressini, James D. Schultz and Ira Greenberg for golfing with me and to Nina Tinari for finding such a great cause.......
It has officially been 10 years since the opening of my very first restaurant, Izakaya at Borgata in Atlantic City. The journey has been long and exciting, but one I wouldn’t trade for the world. Nina Tinari and I are thrilled about our upcoming ventures and look forward to the months ahead......
Sushi has always been a passion of mine, one that launched my career as a chef. I quickly fell in love with the versatility of this dish, as rolls can be as simple or extravagant as you’d like. One of my favorite dishes to make at home is the Spicy Tuna Roll from my Philadelphia restaurant, Double Knot. Ingredients include nori sheet with sushi rice, tuna, wasabi and optional avocado. To make the perfect roll, here are a few things to keep in mind......
When working with rice, wet your hands to avoid stickiness.
Wrap your tuna in paper towels to remove any unwanted fishy taste.
Stick to high quality nori, as inexpensive nori is bound to have a chewy quality.
Always add a little extra something for more texture.
I hope you enjoy creating, serving and eating this dish as much as I do.
It is always great to be back with my talented team, creating new menu items. This time we came up with a delicious dumpling recipe for Monkitail. This restaurant is a contemporary take on the classic Izakaya featuring small plates, sushi and specialty cocktails. We hope you enjoy it!
I had the pleasure of attending the season opening at Lincoln Financial Field. The Philadelphia pride is real. Here’s to another Super Bowl winning season!