Ludovico's proprietor Don Sozio and his two children and granddaughters whip up a menu of Italian sandwiches, pizzas, and homemade entrees using ingredients imported directed from Italy. Hot sandwiches, including the chicken parmigiana sandwich ($7.45) and grilled veggie panini ($7.35), crammed with fresh eggplant, roasted pepper, and broccoli rabe, are best bets for diners looking for a bite of home-cooked goodness or bait for a mozzarella monster trap. Original recipes revive classic comestibles, such as the stuffed portobello mushrooms ($8.99/lb.), grilled with crabmeat and spinach stuffing and capped with a hip new shredded-cheese wig. Snack-sized twice-baked potatoes ($6.99/lb.) compete for diners' affections with mouthfuls of gelato, desserts, and freshly brewed lattes and cappuccino.
As a young girl, Chef Kim's love of cooking was born as she watched her aunts and grandmother craft huge family meals. Today, at Chef Kim's Kitchen, she creates meals for customers who don't have the time or the inclination to cook. Before she starts cooking, customers fill out a culinary questionnaire to inform Chef Kim of food sensitivities and preferences. Meals arrive packaged in reusable containers, ready to heat, freeze, or build a fort with, and most are crafted with local and organic ingredients when possible.
Philadelphia calls Madame Saito the Queen of Sushi, and it's easy to see why. Armed with formal culinary training from Le Cordon Bleu and the Ritz Escoffier in Paris and experience from apprenticeships under premier Tokyo sushi chefs, she has committed the last 26 years to spreading her love for Japanese culture and contemporary fusion cuisine. Although she leaves time in her schedule to manage Tokio Sushi Bar—her sushi restaurant with French culinary influences—, The HeadHouse Cafe, and to conduct an annual sushi-making competition, Madame Saito counts education as one of her highest priorities. She regularly commits her quadrilingual tongue to demystifying the art of sushi during classes for aspiring chefs and casual students alike, teaching them how to hand roll maki and slice fish into perfectly uniform dodecahedrons.
Tastebuds' upscale menu serves homemade takeout and prepared foods for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Start a long day of spelunking off right with a bacon, egg, and cheese bagel ($4.50) or stop in during a break from serving jury duty on the Q Continuum's trial of humanity for a filet-mignon and caramelized-onion panini ($7.99). The deli rotates its take-home entree specials daily alongside healthy regular favorites such as the eggplant parmesan ($8.99/lb) and vegetable quesadillas ($3.99 each). You can also accent any repast with fresh bread from local bakeries, fair-trade coffee, imported and domestic cheeses, specialty teas, Boar’s Head deli meat, and other specialties. Delectable desserts such as the triple-fudge brownie ($1.99), Oreo cookie cake ($4.99), or hand-dipped ice cream treats (prices vary) provide enticing endings to any meals that don't naturally end with the real murderer being unmasked. This Groupon can also be used toward Tastebuds' catering service.
Perch like a provocative peacock under scarlet-hued umbrellas studding the expansive patio during the summer months, or retreat inside and cozy up with a hazelnut cappuccino ($3.90/medium). Capriccio offers a full drink menu that doesn't discriminate against temperature, only extraterrestrials. Enjoy lattes ($3.50/med.), mochas ($3.90/med.), and chai tea ($3.35/med.) served hot or cold, flavored or unflavored. If the taste of a Ghirardelli mocha frappe ($4/med.) only brings back memories of the last time you ordered a Ghirardelli mocha frappe, time travel your taste buds further back to childhood with steamed milk flavored with your syrup of choice. A vanilla-seasoned cup is just like drinking liquid marshmallows ($3.35–4.20). Breakfast treats—including crumb cake ($2.25), yogurt loaves ($2.50), and danishes ($2.75)—call out enticingly from their glass case like the three Sirens at the Philadelphia Zoo. Lunch eats include crisp salads ($6 and up), plus grilled panini and regular sandwiches ($5 and up).