Friday, April 3

Philanthropist, Friend, Wine Enthusiast, Restauranteur | Jeff Benjamin

Last month I blogged about a past ARAMARK colleague and friend Chris Santos who now is Executive Chef and Owner of Stanton Social on the lower east side in NYC.

Today I want to introduce you to another colleague who worked with us at ARAMARK and is also a graduate of the same Hospitality School I attended ; The University of Massachusetts, at Amherst.

Jeff Benjamin

Jeff has always stood out in my mind as a consummate professional with a refined taste and passion for fine service, food and wine. He also devotes a great deal of time and energy towards philanthropic pursuits.

 I once organized a holiday celebration for impoverished children in Brooklyn, NY and Jeff was one of the first people who said he would attend and assist in this effort. Our Brooklyn event was more than 10 years ago and I will never forget Jeff's generosity. I will also never forget him introducing me to "Jack on Ice", which I still enjoy today [wink].

Jeff pictured above at an Alex's Lemonade Stand event which he generously supports

Jeff enjoyed a successful career at ARAMARK and has continued to excel since leaving . He is now  co-owner of two of the best restaurants in Philadelphia. Vetri and Osteria

" Probably the best Italian Restaurant in America" 
-Alan Richman, Bon Appetit 2005

When visiting Vetri make sure to try the Spinach Gnocchi , which are like little pillows of spinach and ricotta in brown butter.  Vetri is an intimate restaurant that offers the Chef's Grand Tasting on weekends.  Venture for a fabulous bottle of wine - there are more than 5,000 bottles in their wine cellar .  A great choice for a romantic dinner or intimate gathering of friends and family.

James Beard Nominated BEST NEW RESTAURANT 2008

The Wood Burning Stove is the stand out at Osteria.  I will be visiting Osteria the first weekend in May and can not wait to try the Classic Margherita Pizza. They are also known for their Wood Grilled Octopus, which I am hoping my girlfriends will enjoy.  All of the Pasta is of course homemade and with enough notice you can request a seat at the Kitchen table which seats 14 for a special Private Dining Experience.

Congratulations on all of your success Jeff - Cheers!

For Reservations and Catering Inquiries
Vetri  | 1312 Spruce Street | 215.732.3478
Osteria | 640 North Broad Street |215.763.0920

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