Monday, July 11, 2011


A Friday date night brought us to Marc Vetri's wonderful Amis on 13th street, just north of Lombard. This is his third restaurant in the city, and we've been looking forward to experiencing it ever since our incredible meal at the original Vetri last summer. The space is warm and inviting, with a great sushi-bar like seating area where you can watch the line chefs work their magic on the fresh pastas and grilled meats that are the mark of the executive chef. No one does Italian like him, and Amis stays true to form.

We started off with a few drinks - I had the CheeChee, a tasty Italian take on an old fashioned with bourbon, marsala & averna; and she went with a glass of prosecco. Drinks were served with complimentary fluffy house baked foccacia. Then came the appetizers - grilled bread with bufala ricotta cheese so good that I'd snort it if I could. The crunchy olive oily bread and and the salty, rich ricotta are made to go with each other like Forest & Jenny. A trio of pecorino cheeses were each better than last one we tried. Paired with different jams and honeys, they danced on the tongue like the godfather was pulling the strings. And lastly a grilled veal tongue with pepper mostarda (the wifey did not try this one) that was borderline decadent - it's rich and tender meat reminiscent of the best bone marrow I've had at the now defunct Ansil.

Grilled bread with Bufala ricotta

Trio of Pecorino cheeses

grilled veal tongue

A caraffe of house red wine for $20 was extremely affordable and surprisingly good. We shared two family style pastas. An egglpant lasagna with incredibly tender sheets of pasta and perfect eggplant was dressed with an incredible heirloom tomato sauce and fresh basil. Not filling like the stuff your grandmom makes, this was light and airy and left room for other indulgences. The star of the party though was the spaghetti with fresh chilis and garlic. Tasting of the best pasta you've ever had, it's tossed in a simple garlic & olive oil sauce (but so much more complex than anything you've had before) and the subtle heat of good chili peppers - were those cubanelles? I could eat this every day and die a very happy man.

eggplant lasagna

spaghetti with chilis and garlic
For dessert we split the Belgian waffle with Nutella, vanilla semifreddo and toasted hazlenuts that made me do one of those little happy dances in my chair. All was right with the world. Amis was a big hit for date night. Now on to Osteria to complete the Vetri trifecta. 

Belfian waffle with vanilla semifreddo and hazlenuts

-T. Kaso

Food Baby Rating -- Gemelli!!

412 South 13th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

Open Mon 5pm-10pm
Tue-Thur 5pm-11pm
Fri 5pm-12am
Sat 10am-2pm, 5pm-12am
Sun 10-2pm, 5pm-10pm

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