Michael T. Regan
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Dock Street is calling on Philly's best bakers to pull out their recipes for the brewpub's first-ever dessert competition. Even if you have the best vanilla cupcakes this side of the Schuylkill, however, know that all entries must include Dock Street's favorite ingredient: beer. The winner will receive a growler filled with a house brew of his or her choice, as well as the opportunity to have Dock Street buy the recipe and sell the dessert. On the judges' panel: Dock Street head brewer Ben Potts, Grey Lodge Pub's Mike "Scoats" Scotese, Dan Conway of Left Hand Brewing, Eddie Friedland of Origlio and Chef Peppino of the Restaurant School. Even if competitive baking's not your thing, Dock Street welcomes anyone interested to come and enjoy the festivities. Dock Street Brewery & Restaurant, 701 S. 50th St., 215-726-2337, dockstreetbeer.com.
Lately the phrase "recession-proof" is being tossed around the city's restaurant scene like a sweltering-hot potato in the dead of summer — but when Gene and Amy Giuffi of Cochon say it, they really mean it. Diners should check out the BYO's $30 tasting menu, which features eats like a 24-hour-braised pork shoulder served with celery root fennel hash, English peas and a mushroom Madeira sauce; pork polenta cake with a poached egg, fingerling potatoes and a mustard vinaigrette; and "poor man's pudding," a shortbread dessert drizzled with maple-bourbon caramel. Even if you wallet is slim, they'll make sure you're not. Cochon, 801 E. Passyunk Ave., 215-923-7675, cochonbyob.com.
The Fair Food Farm Stand at Reading Terminal Market is relocating to the old Rick's Steaks space — but first, they need to raise $11,000. To support their full move to RTM's 12th Street side (it'll expand room by more than 100 percent!), Fair Food is holding a fundraising party where you'll get a chance to nosh on local grub, listen to live music and participate in a raffle. Guests can sample chocolate from John & Kira's, cheese from Birchrun Hills and Keswick Farms and beer courtesy of Philadelphia Brewing Co. Tickets are on a sliding scale — purchase one for just $10 from the stand, or pay more within your means to help the Fair Food cause. Reading Terminal Market, 12th and Arch streets, 215-922-2317, fairfoodphilly.org.
Center City District Sips 2009 is here, meaning multiple Philly venues are offering summer-long happy hour deals every Wednesday from 5 to 7 through August 26. Participating spots include The Bards, 1225 RAW Sushi & Sake Lounge, Jose Pistola's, Pearl, Stir Lounge, Rum Bar and many more; each spot will offer cocktails for $4, wines for $3, beers for $2 and half-priced appetizers. Some restaurants (including Elephant & Castle, Byblos, Finn McCool's) are offering a 15 percent discount to drinkers who stick around for dinner. Visit centercityphila.org for a full list of participating locations.