Northeast Philadelphia, you better be hungry.
Next week will see not one, but two food-centric events. Greater Northeast Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce is hosting Flavors of the Northeast Oct. 2 and Restaurant Week beginning Oct. 3.
The events are an evolution of a model GNPCC President Pam Henshall and others have been perfecting for the past few years. They had previously hosted a similar business expo, but wanted to give local restaurants and caterers their own chance to shine.
“We didn’t have anything like this in Northeast Philly,” Henshall said. “Northeast Philly is so diverse with international communities and cuisine, and we wanted to be able to focus on a week during the year to promote and celebrate all international cuisines and restaurants in the area.”
Flavors of the Northeast is a one-stop shop to sample local flavors. The Philadelphia Ballroom at 2014 Hornig Road will be packed with 24 restaurants and caterers, each with their own select menu items to sample.
A ticket ($25 in advance, $35 at the door) gives you all-you-can-eat access. The list of venues includes local staples like The Grey Lodge Pub, The Dining Car offering selections like kielbasa and kraut and apple walnut pie, and Sawtown Tavern serving up a plant-based “jack’d” Italian roast pork. Chains like Ellis Coffee, The Halal Guys and Texas Roadhouse will also help keep plates and cups full.
“You can walk around and graze for three hours,” Henshall said. “For $25, you’re getting a full meal.”
Blu Dogz will provide ambiance with live music, and a competition featuring local chefs going toe to toe Chopped style will be judged by Pat Gallen of CBS3.
“I’m most excited to bring the community, business community and restaurants, caterers and the hospitality industry together in one room,” Henshall said. “It’s an electrifying event, and everybody walks away with a positive impression and an introduction to something new in the community. That’s the success of the event.”
Flavors of the Northeast will only kick things off. Restaurant Week will return next Wednesday, Oct. 3, and run through Oct. 9. Participating restaurants will offer diners a prix fixe menu, serving multiple courses for a predetermined price.
Currently the eight restaurants set to participate are Dagwood’s Pub, The Dining Car, The Grey Lodge Pub, Broncos Steakhouse, Three Monkeys Café, The Halal Guys, Tierra Colombiana and El Meson.
Last year’s first-ever Northeast Philly Restaurant Week was a succulent success. Henshall said restaurants reported an 18 to 20 percent rise in revenue for the week.
“Lines were out the door,” she said. ••
Flavors of the Northeast runs Tuesday, Oct. 2, from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Philadelphia Ballroom, 2014 Hornig Road. Buy tickets and learn more at nephilachamber.com/events-home/flavors-of-the-northeast
Learn more about Restaurant Week at nephilachamber.com/events-home/rw/