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Putting a spring in our step (and our glass)

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Isn’t Spring wonderful? Life emerges from it’s Winter doldrums to discover those annual events that remind us of all the reasons we suffer the slings and arrows of snow and ice and freezing conditions.
One event that brings a smile to our forlorn brows is being held on May 3, noon – 6 p.m. (rain or shine) the annual Rittenhouse Row Spring Festival, which takes over Walnut Street (between Broad and 19th streets) for the day to showcase the neighborhood’s food, fashion, arts and entertainment. More than 40 restaurants will set up shop along the sidewalks of Walnut Street to serve up samples of spring fare. Beyond the grazing stations, there is live music, free wine tastings and other fun festivities. Among the restaurants you’ll have an opportunity to nibble at a.kitchen (www.akitchenandbar.com), and try out the Kobe beef hot dog from Rouge (www.rouge98.com).
The generosity of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board knows no bounds, they will pour samples of 20 Chairman’s Selection wines with a concierge and onsite store, plus offerings from Peroni beer, Rex Goliath wines and Cintron.

This week's TuneIn Radio guests Patti Lomax, left, and Andy Paterson, right, are shown with Phillip Silverstone. Paterson is the producer of "The Raliway Man", the new movie based on the memoir of Lomaxís late husband Eric, who was tortured in a Japanese POW camp while building the Burma railway.   Photo courtesy of Phillip Silverstone

This week’s TuneIn Radio guests Patti Lomax, left, and Andy Paterson, right, are shown with Phillip Silverstone. Paterson is the producer of “The Raliway Man”, the new movie based on the memoir of Lomaxís late husband Eric, who was tortured in a Japanese POW camp while building the Burma railway.
Photo courtesy of Phillip Silverstone

Shop the latest spring trends at outdoor booths from local shops including Joan Shepp, South Moon Under, Knit Wit, Town Home, Kembrel, Hope Chest, Born Yesterday, Heads and Tails, Duke and Winston, The Children’s Boutique, Tumi, The Shops at the Bellevue and far too many more to list here. I am told there will be entertainment for all ages, including live music at Sydenham Street between 15th and 16th streets and family-friendly activities on 18th Street between Walnut and Sansom.
My recent TuneIn Radio guest, Hope Cohen, who knows her way around many Philly kitchens will be in the Infiniti Lounge on the 1500 block of Walnut Street to sign books and share some cooking tips. There will also be the Starr Culinary Demonstration Stage at 19th and Walnut, where you can learn a few handy kitchen tricks. Drop off non-perishable food items or a monetary donation (10 cans, $10, or both) to benefit Philabundance and you’ll be entered to win on of three prizes from Starr Restaurants.
Sip on this
I just had one of the most amazing red wines to splash into my glass for many months. It was from Gloria Ferrer that splendid Sonoma winery whose bubbly has been my fizz of choice since the world was young. Given that Pinot Noir is a principal grape of all good sparkling wine — and yes, that includes the sparkling wine made in Champagne, it comes as no surprise that Gloria Ferrer Carneros Pinot Noir 2011 is a fabulous example of nectar squeezed from that grape variety. The wine is silky soft and brimming with dark berry flavors, and a drizzling of spice. The wine was aged for 9 months in oak barrels. Keep an eye out for this one. It will probably be around the $30 range. But it’s a winner.
One of my pleasures in life is the libation during the interlude between my work day and dinner. I pour a wee dram or three into a small crystal tumbler and sit back and chill. I am currently being reacquainted with a very dear old friend, namely, Dewar’s 12 Year Old Scotch Whisky (approximately $30). Dewar’s 12 is a luxuriously rich fruity and smooth blend, with warm, buttery and mellow notes. After Dewar’s 12 is blended, it is returned to the vintage oak casks so it can mature further. This extra step is called double barrel aging and it makes Dewar’s 12 Blended Scotch Whisky an even smoother blend with a long, lingering finish.
I’ll wrap up this week’s column with a brilliant Manhattan cocktail recipe for your delectation using Dewar’s 12.
2½ parts Dewar’s 12 Blended Scotch Whisky
¾ parts Martini Sweet Vermouth
Dash of Angostura Bitters
1 twist of orange peel
1 Maraschino cherry
Combine the Dewar’s 12, the Martini Rossi and bitters with 2 – 3 cubes in a mixing glass. Stir gently. Don’t bruise the spirits and cloud the drink. Place the cherry in a chilled Martini glass and strain the whisky mixture over the cherry. Rub the cut edge of the orange peel over the rim of the glass and twist it over the drink to release the oils but don’t drop it in.
Recipe courtesy of Dewar’s
Phillip Silverstone’s column appears each week in this newspaper. “Time Out With Phillip Silverstone” is heard worldwide anywhere and anytime on Tunein Radio. On their app search: Phillip Silverstone or on the web at http://bit.ly/1kqcRmk . New podcasts are available every Saturday. For more information about Phillip: http://www.thesilverstonecollection.com

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