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Tasty treats to fight the heat

Growing up in Philadelphia, the opening of John’s Water Ice (701 Christian St.) was a rite of spring — a treat you had to have simply because it was available. But as summer wore on, it became a necessity and one of the best ways to cool off on a hot summer afternoon. The one-story corner bunker has been scooping out lemon, cherry, chocolate and pineapple water ice since 1945, and we wonder — do the scoopers ever get that cherry red out of their hands?

Where John’s has always been a promoter of keeping it simple, Pop’s (1337 Oregon Ave.) is known for their array of choices. The Broad and Oregon location takes South Philadelphia’s already suspect parking practices to the absurd as cars triple — and yes, even quadruple — park in order to line up for an icy treat.

Our favorite combination remains root beer and vanilla, an even cooler version of a root beer float.

When P.Y.T. opened last year in the Piazza at Schmidt’s, we thought the “adult milkshakes” were a clever novelty — but that’s before we downed a couple. For a Questlove-approved cool down, try his signature “adult” shake: It’s Frangelico liqueur, Baileys Irish Cream and vanilla ice cream.

Bring the beach to your barstool

Oyster House
1516 Sansom St.
$8 per drink

With all due respect to the sticky mess that we call summer in Philadelphia, we’d rather be waiting out this heat on some sand with a nice ocean breeze. But the next best thing? Sweating it out with a cool cocktail.

Monday night, Oyster House is hosting mixologists from across the city for an evening of sea-inspired sips. Oyster House’s Andy DeGiulio shared his “Royster Cup” recipe with us but, well, we’re leaving this one to the professionals

Time to eat some veggies

Even as we were knocking back the final rounds of Beer Week, we were polling other imbibers on where we might reacquaint ourselves with the green things. The suggestions came in, and like an old acquaintance you haven’t thought of in years, we began to remember salads.

Oddly, a couple of our lettuce-based favorites come from restaurants better known for their pizza. Pietro’s (1714 Walnut St.) insalata Mediterraneo mixes greens, sweet onions, grape tomatoes, Kalamata olives, feta cheese and shrimp for a feast in a bowl. Avoid overdoing it with the wonderful fresh bread to keep this meal better than pizza and beer.

SliCE (1740 Sansom St.) is rightfully known for their pizza, but their menu’s two pages of salads create a conundrum of choices. We found bliss in their crispy apple salad, which features a cornucopia of green apples, cranberries, candied walnuts and Gorgonzola cheese.

At the Continental Midtown (1801 Chestnut St.), the vegetarian Continental salad of chopped greens, feta, cucumber, tomatoes and red onion comes recommended. We, however, went with the crispy calamari salad — and weren’t disappointed with said crispy calamari.

Where to kick off the World Cup

It’s a match made in summer drinking heaven: Philly Beer Week 2010 and the World Cup are going down at the same time. Where to begin this weekend? We’ll get you started.

Brauhaus Schmitz
The Brauhaus will be showing all World Cup games live, and if you’re not busy, there’s something in it for you: One dedicated fan will win a beer a day for a year. The rest of you? Enjoy that consolation hangover. 718 South St., www.brauhausschmitz.com

London Grill
For the World Cup kickoff, the Fairmount mainstay has a ton of specials and will be raffling off Philadelphia Union tickets. Friday, 2301 Fairmount Ave., www.londongrill.com

North Bowl
For the first U.S. game against England, stop by for local twists on English-style brews. As for the game, they’ve got it covered on four screens. Saturday, 909 N. Second St., www.northbowlphilly.com

Dr. Watson’s
The Doc is celebrating the U.S.’s debut with their own competition: American brews vs. the Brits. Everyone wins. Saturday, 216 S. 11th St.

Druid’s Keep
They’re a little feistier at the Druid’s Keep. English beers are a no-go all day, and $20 will get you a bucket of domestic craft beer. Saturday, 149 Brown St., 215-413-0455·

Eating for a cause

Helping out a charity can be as simple as sitting down to a good meal.

Marc Vetri’s Great Chefs Event (www.vetrifoundation.org) on June 15 benefits Alex’s Lemonade Stand’s fight against childhood cancer. The roster of local and national chefs would represent the best night ever on Food Network: In addition to local standouts like Michael Solomonov, Jennifer Carroll and Jose Garces, talent comes in from across the country. Dinner at most of these chefs’ restaurants is a triple-digit affair; being able to try dishes from each of them on the same night makes the $250 donation seem like a bargain.

Philadelphia restaurants also get behind our four-legged friends. Dine outside at Meritage (www.meritagephiladelphia.com) on Thursdays with your dog, and the restaurant will donate 10 percent of your dinner check to Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society (PAWS). Chef Anne Coll will even cook up treats for your best friend as you dine on the Asian-inspired menu.

At Brauhaus Schmitz (www.brauhausschmitz.com), PAWS is the beneficiary of its Saturday “Liters for Litters.” Through May, 50 percent of all beer sales until 6 p.m. will be donated to PAWS — and what German Shepherd wouldn’t appreciate that?


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