On the Main Line of the historic Pennsylvania Railroad, unbeknownst to me, I was in the company of Philadelphia’s high society elite. Dora Todd, my colleague and artist, invited me to her art showing at her son’s restaurant, Christopher’s, “A Neighborhood Place”. It was a big event for the city of Wayne, her artwork was on display during the Main Line Jazz & Food Festival. Dora’s husband, who is an educator, shared the history of the area as we headed out for an afternoon of artiste affair. Mr. William Penn, for whom the state of Pennsylvania is named, sold a piece of land to the Welsh who built the main train line to connect them to Center City Philadelphia and to transport them and their goods across Pennsylvania. The Welsh also brought with them a grandeur lifestyle. As a result, the wealthy Wayne County is known for its multimillion-dollar stone Colonial homes, exclusivity and upscale living. As I reflect back on learning about Philadelphia before I moved here from the West Coast, I remember the grand display of the area as shown in the setting of the classic 1940s “The Philadelphia Story” motion picture with Katharine Hepburn, Cary Grant and James Stewart. At the time, I was more interested in the love triangle storyline than the exact neighborhood of filming considering that my relocation was motivated by “love”. It’s peculiar how a love interest journey translates into a life experience of art.
The affair was a celebration, the 2012 Main Line Jazz and Food Festival brought lively Latin music, salsa dancing, artwork, and fine cuisine to the affluent. The brick walls in the open space dining area at Christopher’s were lined with his mother’s beautifully framed paintings. She showcased “light-filled and vibrant” paintings of her hometown landscape which gives her inspiration. Reflections of the Schuylkill Valley, Madaket Beach, sunsets, wheat fields and city streets graced us all as seen through Dora’s eyes. Before she could settle into her seat, she was approached by admirers and got busy signing artwork. We all raised a glass to her first sale of the day. Christopher, equally creative, had much from which to choose on his menu. I targeted his signature dishes to match the Christopher signature wine glass that I swirled about Chardonnay
while contemplating so many wonderful sounding entrees. We dined family style, my select items however, were the Chorizo Relleno and the Fried Avocado. Clearly a white dinner plate is to Christopher what a blank canvas is to Dora. The chorizo stuffed poblano pepper with queso, Spanish rice, white corn and green chili sauce had my taste buds doing the tango. When paired with a slice of the fried avocado, an “Ole’ to the chef was in order! We also shared fried calamari and a veggie garden cream based pizza that made for a wonderful tasting of the variety of food choices at the Neighborhood Place.The wealth of good taste permeates this artiste family affair. Dora and Christopher’s colorful artistry is signed across my heart, and I have the tee-shirt to show it!
Deliciously yours, Honey L’Amour
Honey L’Amour Seal of Approval:
Chorizo Relleno and Fried Avocado
For a video showing, visit my You Tube channel, Amorous Cooking at
Learn more about Christopher’s, A Neighborhood Place at http://www.christophersaneighborhoodplace.com
P.S. For dessert we took a PB and U sandwich to go, you will see how the affluent city of Wayne eats PB&J. Stay tuned.