Two summer dinner series in Philly you can’t miss

dinner series in Philly
Pictured are Avram Hornik, Eli Kulp, and Marley McNamara.
Philly Independent Productions

Foodies, libation lovers and those who just love a wonderful experience have a few new options to add to their agenda this sunny season. Throughout July and August, two summer dinner series in Philly will showcase different culinary skills of top chefs at notable locations all while highlighting some of the best local talent and beyond. 

First up, Chef Eli Kulp and Delicious City Philly have partnered up with Avram Hornik’s Philly Independent Productions to host a summer food and concert series that they’re calling “Philly Grown.” The dual showcase will take place every Tuesday in July and August at the recently opened Liberty Point overlooking the Delaware River. Doors open at 6 p.m. weekly, and admission costs $15 per person (excluding food and drink), with 20 percent of all ticket sales benefitting reproductive rights. 

Kicking off the series on July 5 is Kensington Clearwater Revival (in Liberty Point’s 500-seat amphitheater) and Chef Kulp manning the menu.

dinner series in Philly
“Philly Grown.”Provided

“Delicious City Philly’s entire premise was built on celebrating the dynamic Philly food scene, while building community within it to support and uplift an industry that has been through so much in the past couple years,” said Kulp in a statement. “With this being the first summer in over two years that we feel great about gathering, it’s the perfect time to combine our shared love of food and music to throw a great Philly Grown party, which is exactly what this city needs right now.”

As a release states, advanced reservations via Resy are highly encouraged, as each chef will be selling a limited number of their curated dinners. Prices for these set dinners will fluctuate ($35-$50) between each chef based on their offerings, and reservations for the following week’s installment go live every Wednesday at noon, with each subsequent chef‘s menu made available. 

Participating chefs for future weeks also includes Randy Rucker of River Twice, Ari Miller of Musi, Kiki Aranita of Poi Dog, Jennifer Zavala of Juana Tamale, Chad Rosenthal of Lucky Well, Ange Branca of Kampar Kitchen, Cliff Webb and Jesse Brown of Johnny Brenda’s, and others.

The artist lineup for the series was curated by Marley McNamara, who recently joined FCM Hospitality as the Director of Live Programming, and preciously, her history in the Philadelphia music scene spanned managing multiple emerging bands over the years and acting as lead showrunner and regional talent buyer at Johnny Brenda’s. 

Mcnameras’s line-up for the 2022 dinner series in Philly includes Electric Candlelight, Slomo Sapiens, Sixteen Jackies, Mobbluz, Pine Barons, Britt Thomas Band and Squawk Brothers, Golden Apples, Birdie Busch, and more.

Next up at River Twice, another dinner series activation will be getting festive—holiday festive. The establishment’s “Christmas in July” will be in full swing late next month to make up for the Cheftivus guest chef series which got cut short due to Omicron, and it all starts July 25. 

dinner series in Philly
River Twice’s Christmas in JulyProvided

The original five-night series was planned to feature chefs from Philadelphia, Brooklyn, and New Hampshire scheduled for collaboration dinners in the days leading up to Christmas Eve. Now, the husband and wife team behind River Twice (Chef/Owner Randy Rucker and Owner/Operator Amanda Rucker) will showcase more impressive culinary talents for Christmas in July. 

“We had such a blast during those first two dinners in December, but seeing the surge of COVID cases, the priority was to put the health and safety of our staff and guests first, so we had to cancel” said Chef Rucker in a statement. “It was out of our hands, but that’s in the past, and we’re now looking forward to this very exciting series featuring some very talented chefs who I have the utmost respect for.”

The dinner series will feature Dominic Piperno of Hearthside on July 25, Alexandra Holt of (the soon-to-open) Roxanne on July 26, Chef Shola Olunloyo of Studiokitchen on July 27, Eddie Konrad of Messina Social Club on July 28, and finally, Sarah Conezio and Isaiah Billington of Keepwell Vinegar on July 29. 

According to the release, all dinners will feature indoor and outdoor seatings beginning at 5 p.m., with 50 seats available per night. Dinners cost $150 per person, or $175 at the chef’s counter (four seats with two turns per night). Due to the nature of the events, dietary restrictions cannot be accommodated, and reservations can be made via Resy beginning Tuesday, June 28. Diners should note that River Twice will then be closed that weekend, July 30 and 31.

To learn more about “Philly Grown” at Liberty Point (211 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd.) and to purchase tickets, visit phillyindie.com. To learn more about River Twice’s (1601 E. Passyunk Ave.), visit rivertwicerestaurant.com

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