Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles Well, it is my favorite thing in the whole world to make, spaghetti with clams, that's it. I could make that, I could eat that every single day the rest of my life. Squid ink spaghetti, zucchini, lemon. Life is the combination of magic, and pasta. My name is Marc Vetri and I'm chef-owner of The Vetri Family. Vetri just kinda started off with my vision of what food from Italy looks like. I never liked food that was kinda too complicated and too thought out. I always liked to simplify things. It's all about product and technique, and that's it. So this one is spinach gnocchi. This is all spinach. We actually just blanch it off stick it in a robo tube. Just hold it together with a little bit of flour, egg, little bit of bread crumb, little bit of parmesan, nutmeg, and you know, that's it. That's why we have to make them to order because it's just like, like otherwise they're, they're just gonna fall apart. My family's from Italy and you know, I was raised on that simple type of food. You know, you just take two flavors and like, that's the dish. We're highlighting one ingredient. Vetri basically was the first restaurant, this is, you know, what my whole life led up to. I started off working in restaurants when I was probably 15 years old, washing dishes. In 1990, I actually moved down to Los Angeles to go to music school. In order to make a living out there, I used to work evenings at a restaurant. I was actually working for Wolfgang, he was like the hottest, really, chef in the nation. And sometimes I'd skip school, head into the restaurant a little early, just to watch and learn. That was really my restaurant school, you know like, I never had formal restaurant school training. The music thing was you know, sorta not heading anywhere and I was really liking restaurants. So I had this opportunity to go to Italy and I just went. That's where I really started to think that, wow this is, you know, this is really something that, that I would love to do the rest of my life. I worked all over the place and then in 1998, I was 31 years old, and I was like, this is it, I'm ready to open up. So I looked around a little bit in New York but I ended up coming home to Philadelphia, cuz this is my home. The restaurant scene when I opened was spotty, here and there. Nobody was really talking about Philadelphia as a restaurant city. When I opened up Vetri, that was like, the goal, that was like I had, you know, sort of reached the mark. And I was like, well, I have my own restaurant. As the years went on, it got a little bit more refined, and it was a little bit, not accessible to everybody. And I decided, well, let's open up something a little bit more accessible, you know? And that's when we, the Osteria concept started to happen. And after that it was just like, it was a roll out, you know, started, and we were like, wow, this is kinda neat, you know? I liked to opening up restaurants. The pastas have changed, the pappardelle is off the menu this evening. Adam Leonti started with me eight years ago now, he was like, 21 years old. He just kind of stopped in here and he was like, hey I'd love to hang out. And I, you know, saw he really loved it, he really thinks like I do about food, and work. He's actually been the head chef here for the last four years. It's a really awesome you know, relationship we have. We're all about evolution, we're all about learning. This place is ever evolving. And I think to keep the restaurant at a high level, you have to reinvest not only the, the money, but you also have to reinvest the thought that actually goes into the restaurant. So last night we started off the evening here, at Vetri. Me and Adam decided to head over to Morimoto. All right. Sitting at the sushi bar and just like letting them make whatever. That's awesome. I never even order. I just like, make me some, some sushi. You're gonna get something that like, there's no way you could ever have here otherwise, you know? I think it's right up here on the left. Yeah, there it is. That's pretty good. Morimoto is one of my favorite restaurants in Philadelphia. Since it opened, I've had a lot of my most memorable meals there. Sitting at the sushi counter, that's always where I like to sit. And those guys, man, they just always blow it out. I've been waiting for this. They just always have the freshest items. Some sushi, sashimi, whatever, yeah. Chef's choice. Salud. So I think he actually started us off with like, the baby eels with a little bit of the egg yolk and a little bit of soy sauce on there. So fresh. And after that, we went into like a steamed abalone. We went into some Japanese mackerel. I think we had some Japanese snapper. All right, boom. Boom. Oh, fantastic. Mm, man that one's for the races, it's like a little warm. Fucking unbelievable. Everyone talks about rice when they eat sushi, but this rice is just, like, a little bit warm, and it's just like the perfect texture of rice every time. I love just, like, sitting and just watching how they use their knives. When I was in LA, I worked at a sushi bar just to learn all about like, knife work from the sushi chef. And man, they just taught me everything. They were so immaculate with everything, so precise with everything. They always like, make a slice, and then they wipe the knife down, and they always like, place it in like the same area. I often tell my line cooks to just head over there, sit at the sushi bar, not even eat, just like learn, just watch how they work, you know? That's the right way to work. How are you doing? Good, how are you doing? While we were eating there, Adam's friend Steve, from high school, just happened to be rolling in to Philadelphia. Have a seat. All right. These are the maestro chefs right here. That's unbelievable. Yeah, and they're no joke. Look at that. The beef, that the belly? It's tuna belly. No. Cheek. Look at that. It looks like kobe beef. Holy shit, I gotta take a picture. Hold on. It does, I mean look at it. Fucking ridiculous. Super toro. Or, holy fucking shit toro. Oh, this is like a piece of gold. Dude, that was ridiculous. Holy shit. Jesus Christ, this is like-,. Yeah. The best meal I've ever had in my life. Just by accident. We gotta eat after this, just saying, so. I don't even want him to stop. I know. For fear I'll throw up or something. Shit fuck balls. There's just nowhere like it anywhere. I think that we're so lucky to have that here in Philadelphia. Thank you so much. We asked the chef, Hiroki San, to come hang out with us. He was happy, you know, he hadn't eaten yet. Man, that super. Supertoro? Man. Too greasy, but... But for one piece... Yeah, but for one piece. Yeah, that's great. Now we are heading over to Kanella. Yes. That's a lovely place. Have you ever eaten there before? Have you been to Kanella? No. Oh my God, dude, really? Oh yeah. Oh, you're gonna love it. Cypriot food, not Greek, Cypress. Kanella, another, you know one of my all time favorite Philadelphia restaurants. It's all Cypriot food, food from Cyprus. The chef owner there, Konstantinos, is just an amazing friend of mine, and I've known him since he's opened up his restaurant there. And he's just like, the real deal. You know, that guy, he's there every night, just making incredible flavors. Kanella I started about seven and a half years ago. Kanella means cinnamon in Greek, Portuguese, Italian, French, you name it. Being from Cyprus, I'll say it's a Greek, Cypriot cuisine. Cyprus is in the eastern Mediterranean. 12,000 years of history. We've been conquered many times by different nationalities. With the Turks, the Venetians, French, the Arabs were there, all those influences came all in one plate, at Kanella. That's what I explore. But at the same time, I keep it simple and I keep it as traditional as possible. I have the lamb dumplings, Mediterranean style. Holy shit, lamb dumpling. It was just like lamb, kind of sausage meat, with some yogurt. What's the spices in this? Aleppo, sumac... Sumac. Cayenne, paprika. Cayenne I saw. Mint. Mint. And something else. Woo, that's spicy. Yeah. It was just like, the right amount of heat, the right amount of lamb, with the right amount of noodle. It was amazing. After that, he put out some, some octopus. Which was just like, as tender as you've ever had octopus before, and has flavorful. Octopus here, we serve it grilled. As I'm doing that I'll be sauteing the giant beans.