Sunday, May 7, 2017

2017 Rittenhouse Row Preview Party

It's springtime in Philly so that means we have the Rittenhouse Row Festival to look forward to. And what better way to wait out the time until the May 20th Festival than to check out its Preview Party? This year, it was held in the Hyatt at the Bellevue and the Festival's participating restaurants and bars showcased why they're some of Philly's best. 

In addition to the great food and hand-crafted drinks, there was also a silent auction! Gift cards, dining experiences, trips, and spa packages were all up for bid to benefit the non-profit that is Rittenhouse Row, which represents more than 200 businesses. 

The night's sponsors made for an enjoyable experience filled with plenty of libations. The ladies of Peroni made the rounds so that no one was without a drink in hand. And in addition to wine, there were plenty of stations where mixologists crafted Maker's Old Fashioneds & Manhattans, Hornitos margaritas, Effen Vodka dirty martinis, and Cruzan dark rum storms. One of our favorite drinks of the night had to be the Sydenham Smash, featuring Makers Mark 46 bourbon, honey, strawberry, lemon, and champagne. The perfect spring tipple. 

And of course, there was plenty of food to enjoy. For lighter fare, paired cheese plates were passed around, along with Baril's fabulous ratatouille and salads from Marathon. Devon Seafood's poke was on trend and on point - wonderfully tossed in a soy-sesame dressing and an accompanying aioli. 

Volver offered a light and fluffy tortilla espagnola, paired beautifully with caviar. a.Kitchen's gorgeous chicken liver mousse was offered with a High St. rye crisp, rhubarb, and mustard. Garces' 24 had a light and moist pork tonnato, with a fennel slaw. And there were also plenty of hors d'oeuvres passed around, including tomato tarts and chicken and waffle drumettes!  

I had to go back for more of Rouge's tuna tartare - well-seasoned and light. XIX offered up to-order mini-crab cakes that were obviously a hit. DiBruno Bros had a duo of sandwiches, including a mortadella & mozzarella with truffle butter spread as well as a sandwich they called "Calabria meets Catalonia." The latter was a wonderful melange of flavors with serrano, manchego, nduja, pickled red onion, and a membrillo spread. Davio's tossed hand-rolled potato gnocchi to order in a rich bolognese sauce. Topped with scallions before serving, this was a great bite.

Everyone's sweet tooth was satiated courtesy of Termini Bros' always amazing cannoli, Rita's "wudder" ice, Continental Midtown's confections, and Ben & Jerry's milk and cookies sundae! 

So if the Preview Party's any indication, you'd be remiss not to mark your calendars for the May 20th Festival. And for those that missed out on the Preview Party, be on the lookout for tickets to next year's festivities! 

FTC Disclaimer: Thanks as always to Gloss PR for inviting us out! 

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