Though his dishes once occupied the white-linen tablecloths of Philadelphia’s finest restaurants, Chef Gerald Dougherty now prefers making napkins messy with his signature recipes of rich, meaty barbecue fare. The former head chef of L'Aigla D'Or and Founders at the Bellevue, Chef Gerald currently oversees the pit at Little Louie's BBQ, a casual eatery he opened to satisfy his hankering for down-home grub. Not one to color within the lines, he draws on barbecue styles from across the country—think North Carolina, Kansas City, and Memphis—and smokes his meats over cherrywood, applewood, and hickory chips.
Little Louie’s dining room betrays the same down-home inspirations as its menu. Rustic lumber lines the countertops, and light fixtures reminiscent of branches illuminate the expansive space. If they can peel their eyes away from the beef brisket and pulled pork on their plates, guests will notice Butch Cassidy and Lone Ranger posters hanging from the walls, classic Western movies playing on the 70-inch flat-screen television, and outlaws discreetly taking down Wanted signs that bear their uncanny resemblances.
After Vernon Rudolph acquired a closely guarded yeast-raised Krispy Kreme Doughnuts recipe from a New Orleans pastry chef, he shared his appreciation for delectable disks by opening shop in 1937 and selling the first Krispy Kremes to grocery stores. The wafting aroma of glazed Krispy Kreme Doughnuts increased demand for the sweet treats and caused Rudolph to redesign his building's layout to include a walkup window, Rudolph was able to sell them directly to any passing customer who demanded a snack. Later, he joined forces with equipment engineers, creating baking equipment that guaranteed uniform shape and dough consistency.
Rudolph's departure to a pastry-filled afterlife in 1973 did not stop Krispy Kreme from expanding into a global sensation and continuing to innovate. In recent years, the company enhanced the treat-retrieving experience by introducing a Hot Light that, when illuminated, indicates when Krispy Kreme Doughnuts are fresh off the conveyor belt.
The word "verde" means "green" in Spanish, and that's exactly what Verde Salon strives to be. The salon offers numerous eco-friendly beauty treatments, from formaldehyde-free nail polishes to skincare products formulated with organic and vegan ingredients. Even the space itself is green?it boasts low- or no-VOC paints and finishes, recycled wallpaper and bamboo flooring, and EnergyStar appliances.
Owner and head stylist Kevin Gatto runs the show here. The beauty guru has more than a decade of industry experience under his belt, including stints as an expert stylist on CBS- and NBC-Philadelphia, and a lifetime of shampooing his own hair. He and his team work hard to keep up with the always-changing salon industry, regularly participating in what Gatto calls "scissors-on" trainings to learn the latest styles and techniques.
Diamond Angels, founded by Tangey, inhabits a 1,500 square-foot-facility, equipped with two dance-training rooms and a cadre of hand-picked instructors that teach all-levels of dance-fitness classes. The all-female studio fosters a nonjudgmental environment suitable for adult women of all ages and whistling abilities. During one-hour classes, held seven days a week, up to 10 flirty-fitness fanatics in athletic shorts and high heels soak up an instructor's expertise. The toning, cardio-intensive, aerobic routine's sultry moves help dancers develop a more toned, slimmer silhouette. The studio also hosts private parties for groups of girlfriends 18 years or older, which they must prove by reciting the Latin alphabet backwards.
At Sapori Trattoria Italiana, Chef Franco Lombardo celebrates the flavors of his native Italy, and every inch of his restaurant reflects his vision for an authentic trattoria: he designed the dining room himself, from its stone walls to its wrought-iron balconies. Within this rustic, terra-cotta-hued space, Chef Lombardo plates traditional Northern and Southern Italian cuisine. If diners choose to partake in a “tasting dinner,” they’ll be treated to a visit from the chef himself, who’ll examine the shape of each diner’s taste buds and then tailor a five-course menu to suit them. Otherwise, diners can choose from an ample menu of pastas, seared meats, and sautéed seafood enhanced with fresh, all-natural ingredients—the veal is grass-fed, the seafood is never frozen, and pastas are rolled from scratch.
Inspired fabric artists find everything they need at The Quilted Nest, and those seeking inspiration can find it in fun patterns and books nestled amid neatly stacked bolts of quilt-shop-quality cotton. Creative ideas also abound in the shop's regularly scheduled classes, putting an end to quilters' days of patterning squares after boring stock-market charts. Customers are encouraged to bring their own sewing machines, but public machines are available for rent during classes. In addition to workshops and classes, the shop also hosts events such as weekly Manic Mondays, where anyone can needle away with no studio or machine-rental fee as long as they are working on a project for a charity.