If you love Italian food, a visit to one of Luke Palladino’s restaurants is a must. The award-winning chef and restaurateur spent four years training in Italy, so he knows a thing or two about la buona cucina. He currently serves as excutive chef LP Steak and Fianco at the Valley Forge Casino Resort and owns Luke Palladino Seasonal Cooking in Linwood, New Jersey. Here, Luke tells us about his favorite places to mangia. Buon appetito!
Best late night meal?
A chef’s life is full of late nights. When I eat late, I want something good that’s filling and not too heavy. Glenmorgan Bar and Grill at the Radnor Hotel (593 East Lancaster Ave., St. Davids) has a great bar menu. Try the Five Spice Asian meatballs or the Glenmorgan Onion Soup, perfect for unwinding with a good beer.
Best meal under $10?
Stargazy (1838 E. Passyunk Ave.) is right by Palladino's on Passyunk and is my go to spot for a quick, tasty and inexpensive meal with a selection of meat pies and mash with parsley liquor. What’s more, you get the bonus of hanging with owner/chef Sam Jacobson.
Best hidden foodie gem?
Avenue Kitchen (509 Wilmington West Chester Pike, Glen Mills) reminds me of elevated comfort food. With dishes like Creme Brulee Waffles, Crab Beignets with malt vinegar aioli and Grilled Cheese with Short Rib — this place is a food lover’s dream.
Best place to dine alone?
The White Dog Cafe in Wayne (200 W. Lancaster Ave.). I go there for a glass of vino and some grilled oysters or the BLT Sliders. A great local place to chill out solo.
Place you always take or recommend for out-of-towners?
Paramour (139 E. Lancaster Ave., Wayne) has a great brunch that is sure to impress out of town guests. Their brunch comes with Chef’s Complimentary Appetizer Bar which includes items like fresh fruit, Greek yogurt parfaits, a variety of artisanal cheeses and fig and brie with 25-year-aged balsamic vinegar. The real star of their brunch is the bloody mary bar. You can build your own cocktail from the house made heirloom tomato mix and large variety of fresh sauces, spices and garnishes. Always a great time here!
Go-to date spot?
Lotus Farm to Table (112 W. State St., Media) is a cozy BYOB with unique dishes that are great for sharing.
Best place to catch up with friends?
Nectar (1091 Lancaster Ave., Berwyn) My friend Patrick Feury an amazing chef who creates innovative, flavorful and eclectic Asian inspired food, killer cocktails and a fun atmosphere where I bring my friends to have fun!
Most Instagrammable restaurant?
The Red Store in Cape May Point (500 Cape Ave.) by my friend Lucas Manteca. The flavors, the atmosphere and the service all come together for the complete package. Between the food and the restaurant, there are tons of visuals to get up on Instagram.
For all the latest on Luke Palladino, visit: lukepalladino.com
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