Sunday, April 30, 2017


Every once in a blue moon, the Mistress likes to venture into downtown to the Reading Terminal Market . The thing is, I go into Philly often, but if I go to the market, I have to be coming right back to the Casa to put the finds away. I'm here to tell you, I can go nuts in there too. When it comes to food I sometimes have no restraint. To see me, one may be shocked I eat like a horse. Luckily from my father's side, I was blessed with a high metabolism. Which is good, otherwise my pants would all need to be let out. And the Lad would make a crack about me getting heavier when we are getting frisky.

The history of Reading Terminal Market dates all the way back to 1860 when the Butcher’s and Farmer’s Market opened for business on the 1100 block of Market Street. The market stayed at the location for 30 years, but by 1890 it looked like the market’s days were numbered.  The Philadelphia and Reading Railroad Company purchased the land occupied by the market and planned to demolish it to make way for a new railroad terminal. The market was saved however when the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad Company agreed to build a new market underneath the railroad station. In 1892, the new market opened for business and became known as the Reading Terminal Market and thrived in its new building , and has been ever since, and is considered America’s oldest continuously operating farmer’s market. They have everything too....fresh seafood, meats, cheeses, pastries, flowers, produce, French linens, Polish cooking ware, homemade Amish pies or the best sandwiches in America. The Reading Terminal Market has you covered. What took me in though was the cheeses at Salumeria.

They have the cheeses. And I love my cheeses. Almost more than I love my men.
I came home with several. Cheeses, not men. A French Brillat-Savarin with crushed papaya. Zighera, a smoked cheese. Pecorino siciliano from Sicily. And a lovely Spanish Manchego.

It's long corridors of food. Row after row. Produce.....

Pastries at Termini Brothers Bakery. Don't get me started.
I didn't get porked today, but this place has the best pork B-B -Q!

Seafood......but wasn't in the mood for crabs.
I love lobster, but feel terrible eating the poor things....till they are on the plate.

In addition to my cheeses, and produce and my meat and sausages, I couldn't resist this sandwich .... a  Corned Beef Special at the  Hatville Deli,a long-standing deli stall, where the Esh family has been using products from their native Lancaster County for over 30 years, the most famous offering is this cold sandwich, which plies corned beef with coleslaw and Russian dressing .

And I couldn't resist two cannoli's from Termini Borthers......
Thank goodness the Lad or Daddy Warbucks aren't here this weekend. Otherwise they may mistake me for Philbert, the 3-foot bronze piggy bank that resides in the market.

Hey, I may be a tad heavier, but I'm happy!

Saturday, April 29, 2017


While the Mistress was out to the market this morning, the houseboys were busying themselves....
of course.

Friday, April 28, 2017


In this new feature, I'll share a picture of a weekly guest and you tell me in only three words what come to mind.

In three words.....
Andy Warhol


The birthday celebration week continues with Ella Fitzgerald, Joe Pass and others performing this Duke Ellington's and Irving Mills' song in London, in 1974. This live date was recorded at Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club in Soho. Note the fun she makes in the beginning of the song and also while singing it. Ella was and still is majestic. She sure did feel the music and have fun. I do like her best when she is doing her jazz thing.  I would have loved to she her perform in a jazz club just once.

Thursday, April 27, 2017


One of my favorite songs. It's doesn't matter who does it, but Ella does a beautiful version of this. Fly me to the Moon from "Ella in Japan:'S Wonderful" With a beautiful array of pictures of the great through her life.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017


We're celebrating the first Lady of Jazz all week with my favorites!

Here is Ella Fitzgerald, with a studio orchestra conducted and arranged by Buddy Bregman, from her album "Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Rodgers & Hart Songbook" recorded in August of 1956.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017


"It isn't where you came from, its where you're going that counts."

"The only thing better than singing is more singing."
"I stole everything I ever heard, but mostly I stole from the horns"

"Just don't give up trying to do what you really want to do. Where there is love and inspiration, I don't think you can go wrong."

"I'm very shy, and I shy away from people. But the moment I hit the stage, it's a different feeling I get nerve from somewhere; maybe it's because it's something I love to do"

"Kids in Italy call me 'Mama Jazz; I thought that was so cute. As long as they don't call me 'Grandma Jazz."

"One of these mornings your goin to rise up singing. Then you'll spread your wings and you'll take the sky.
The First Lady of Song, Ella Fitzgerald, would have turned 100 years old this year had she not passed away June 15, 1996. Also known as the Queen of Jazz and Lady Ella, Fitzgerald was born in Virginia April 25, 1917, grew up in Yonkers, NY and rose to fame after she competed in one of the first Amateur Nights at the Apollo. As her career progressed, Fitzgerald performed as a solo artist and collaborated with jazz greats including Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington and Dizzy Gillespie. Her scat singing skills helped usher in the bebop era of jazz. Later, Fitzgerald returned to more classic arrangements in an attempt to find a wider audience. Her Cole Porter Songbook and Great American Songbook recordings had more universal appeal and sealed her legacy as one of the most talented American singers. In honor of Fitzgerald’s 100th birthday, I do believe I'll sprinkle the week with some of my favorite Lady Ella songs.

Happy Birthday Lady Ella!!

Up first is Ella singing a lively Mack the Knife.....

Monday, April 24, 2017


Washington Crossing and Bucks County might not be known as wine country, but that's set to change if the owners of Crossing Vineyards have anything to say about it.
Since opening Crossing Vineyards and Winery in 2000, they have built up a reputation for superior vintages that blend technology and expertise with a careful attention to craftsmanship and an eye to the unique local terroir. Ah, yes, there cannot be a more perfect time of year to go winery hopping, and here our fair hamlet we are lucky enough to have our very own slice of Napa cradled in the outskirts of New York City and Philadelphia, with four vineyards.....yes, I see a tour coming.
Here in Bucks County, which is not the first place you think of for wine producing country, but none the less, a good friend and I  visited a lovely vineyard in Washington's Crossing, a small town up  river from New Hope and not far from the lazy Delaware River, the spot where Washington crossed the Delaware during the Revolutionary War.It was a perfect 70 degrees, sun shining amidst a cloudless sky, which seemed to heighten every one of my senses in the most fantastic way. The Crossing Vineyards and Winery, a two-hundred year old estate, is a charming plot of land with swirling vineyards, floating butterflies and a whimsical little garden that looks out to acres of stunning property. The winery has been written up by The New York Times and was awarded the gold medal at the 2010 International Eastern Wine Competition. And after tasting their fare, I can see why.
Opened in 2000, the winery has become one of the best of its kind in the area. The success of the  fruitfully, robust grapes can be partially attributed to the use of laser planting technology which creates perfectly straight rows for optimal vine growth.
Yesterday when we visited we opted for the “standard” tasting.  Tastings are held in a large, dimly-lit cellar on a long U-shaped table where guests gather around. We tasted a total of 12 wines, five whites, four reds, and 3 dessert wines.  I will not claim to be a connoisseur, but I have tasted some excellent wines in my day, and overall I was extremely pleased with the selections I sampled.
The staff was extremely friendly and very knowledgeable. The wine attendants at each station gave facts and the flavors of each wine. For $15 that included our tasting, and then one full glass of your choice at the end.  But you know your dear Mistress bought a bottle, as did my friend, and we enjoyed it with a huge selection of meats and cheeses. What a lovely afternoon. Of course I came home with a bottle too. How could I pass up on the Wildberry?

On the way home I even stopped in Washington's Crossing to snap a few gratuitous pictures.
The bridge above was of course not there then, but this is the spot. Below , on the stone "landing" is the spot where Washington and his troops pushed off to cross the river. One almost gets chills knowing all this history took place. Or was it the wine???

And this last shot is strictly for Bob. It reminds me of his Architecture Wednesday post. This home is on River Road heading back into New Hope. Boy, I can only imagine their views!!!!!
What a great way to celebrate Earth Weekend.