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  • 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.