Suddenly, the Main Line is soaking in suds.
Sure, we have locally-owned brewpub faves like Ardmore’s Tired Hands, McKenzie Brewhouses in Berwyn and Malvern, newbie La Cabra Brewing and, slithering soon to Bryn Mawr, Tin Lizard.
And yes, we’ve got a few, but not nearly enough, cozy gastro-pubs like The Goat’s Beard and Teresa’s Next Door in Wayne.
And of course, restaurants far and nigh (Biga, Savona et. al.) have been beefing up their beer lists.
No, the BIG news in brews is this: a brand-new law permits PA peeps to take home beer by the bottle.
As of two weeks ago, we can sip ’em, then love ’em or leave ’em. No need to commit to a case or even a six-pack. Drink around? Don’t mind if we do. It’s legal.
So, cheers to you, Harrisburg. (Never thought we’d say that.)
Also hopped up with happiness: your friendly neighborhood beer distributor.
Because the playing field’s level at last. Armed with wider and craftier selections, not to mention nicer prices, distributors can finally take a swing at brawny supermarkets and puny bottle shops.
And no one around the Main Line may be better equipped to take them on than Chris Kunda, proud product of St. Joe’s Prep and the fourth-generation proprietor of Kunda Beverage in King of Prussia.
Nirvana for beer nerds, Kunda, aka The Bev, just installed a mammoth, 30-ft. long reach-in refrigerator, so you can put your paws on a cold one.
Or three. Selection’s yuge.
Yearning for something even fresher and more off-grid? Belly up to The Bev’s slick new crowler bar. Pick up a 32 oz. chilled can, place under one of eight, ever-changing taps, insert in sealing/labeling machine, and be on your way.
Apologies to 7-Eleven; gulp and go has never been more fun.
(Note to winos: Crowlers are baby growlers, half the size but twice as cool.)
Kunda carries 2,000 beers from around the globe and 48 states. A whopping ten times the selection it had ten years ago. Plus, its roots are Main Line all the way. Take that, Total Wine!
Chris re-invigorated the Bev’s retail biz after the company sold its wholesale routes to Origlio Beverage, one of Philly’s biggest importing and domestic distributors.
Chris scouts out exotic brews for The Bev like pigs sniff out truffles.
A true beer connoisseur, he’s Cicerone-certified. Which means he studied like hell, then sat for a two-day test.
A bar exam of a very different order.
Wanna lay an Evil Twin (a devilishly delicious Danish import) on your beer-lovin’ Valentine? Head to Kunda’s “specialty singles” aisle, where ultra-elegant brews, many in “large format” bottles, can go for $30 or more.
Also soaking in the bottle law’s golden glow, albeit at a more relaxed pace, is The Beer Yard, a Wayne fixture for nearly 20 years.
“We’ll be up to speed in six weeks,” owner Matt Guyer tells SAVVY. “We’re a very small store; we’re doing it piece by piece.”
His 20-year-old biz suffered “substantially lower foot traffic” after supermarkets started selling six packs, he says. To close the gap, he didn’t replace an employee and amped up his wholesale deliveries.
Matt admits his prices are “on par” with Wegmans but says they’re lower than bottle shops.
Another plus: “We have access to things big corporations won’t deal with.”
Step into the Beer Yard and “not only do you get our sparkling personality” but you get help from our knowledgeable staff.
And that, Matt says, is what separates the Beer Yard and Kunda Bev from grocery stores. “We know the product and can talk about it.”
Hate your wrinkles? Turns out you have good reason to – and it’s not just vanity talking.
It seems the same thing that causes skin to shrivel makes it easier for tumor cancer cells to invade.
Don’t just take our word for it. That scary morsel comes straight from the mouth of whiz-bang Wistar Institute scientist and Merion Station mom, Ashani Weeraratna,
Dr. Weeraratna was the featured speaker at last week’s Wistar’s Women & Science event, aka A Girls Nights Out For Your Brain.
Anyone who likes to get “a little color” to look “healthy” on vacation might want to spend a minute with Dr. Ashi, a world-class melanoma researcher.
You’ll run for cover.
Among the bombs she dropped:
*Melanoma is more than skin deep. It spreads everywhere and kills one American every hour.
*It’s relentless: patients respond to drug therapy but most ultimately relapse.
*The sun is an equal opportunity destroyer. Whether you’re olive-skinned or fair, whether you tan outside or on a bed, you’re damaging your DNA. Little-known fact: Bob Marley died from melanoma.
*A “disease of aging,” melanoma incidence “skyrockets” with age. Worse yet, the older you are when you get it, the less likely you are to survive. Melanoma rates have been steadily increasing for decades; science is still trying to figure out why.
*Smoking and tanning are the biggest causes of DNA-damage to skin.
*Tanorexia is a thing. An “emerging addiction,” it’s comparable to getting hooked on alcohol or tobacco.
*The causal link between UV radiation (tanning) and skin cancer is MUCH stronger than the link between smoking and cancer.
*Just ONE visit to a tanning bed increases your risk of melanoma by 20 percent – you hear that, brides-to-be?
*Saying a base tan “protects” you from skin cancer is like saying smoking a pack of cigarettes protects you from lung cancer.
But there’s sunlight at the end of the tan-free tunnel.
Dr. Ashi & her team are in the final stages of preclinical studies (on mice) showing that a certain protein, HAPLN 1, could help trap skin tumors. Trap the bad guy and he can’t run down and jump into your bloodstream to spread his nastiness.
Seriously, learning about Ashi’s lab’s groundbreaking work to save us from melanoma – in our own West Philly backyard, no less – was a little like watching the “Hidden Figures” ladies figure out how to launch NASA into orbit.
Cool on every level.
Click here for info on upcoming Women & Science events at the Wistar Institute. (Point of Philly pride: Wistar is the FIRST independent institute in the U.S. devoted solely to biomedical research and training.)
Turning to crime news… What’s going on with heists from re-sale shops by bandits wearing Gucci?
Robbers recently made off with thousands in designer duds from Remix, an upscale consignment shop on Main Street in Manayunk.
Seems a well-dressed man wearing a Gucci hat entered the store at 6 p.m. on a Wednesday night and asked to see a Chanel handbag. Then, pointing a silver handgun, he handcuffed (with zip ties) a terrified employee and a customer in a dressing room, shut off the lights and let in two accomplices – one of whom was also wearing a Gucci hat. The trio then made off with more than $10,000 in designer fur and leather.
Meanwhile, Tredyffrin police continue to ask for help finding a guy in red-and-black Gucci sneakers who burglarized Plato’s Closet in Paoli. Shortly before midnight on New Year’s Eve, the crook forced open the front door, tried to disable the alarm, then made off with a bunch of cash, possibly in a 2012 VW Jetta.
Here he is, caught on tape by a security camera from neighbor Testa Jewelers:
So – coincidence or not: both bandits are black, of medium height and build, under age 40 and fond of Gucci.
Send your tips to [email protected] or call 610-644-3221.
Also on the police blotter: Authorities have recovered the car that was stolen Thanksgiving night from a driveway in the Malvern neighborhood, Summerhill.
PA State Police found the 2015 Nissan Juke in Philly, Tredyffrin PD spokesman Todd Bereda tells SAVVY. The car theft and several other thefts from unlocked cars that weekend remain under investigation.
The Ball – you know which one – bounced back nicely Saturday night after its historic 2016 snowstorm wipeout.
Nearly 2,000 folks saw Martin Short sing, dance and goof off with the Philadelphia Orchestra at the Academy of Music’s 160th Anniversary Concert and Ball.
Some in the audience were swells, of course, but about 300 were students attending the concert on free tickets.
Among Martin Short’s more memorable lines: After noting a special kinship with conductor Nézet-Séguin because they’re both from Canada, he cracked: “We’re the aliens you don’t deport.”
After the show, some 1,400 ball-goers walked down Broad Street for dinner and dancing at the Bellevue.
Not a snowflake – or a striking musician – in sight.
Keeping the Academy of Music, aka Grand Old Lady of Locust Street, looking her youthful best doesn’t come cheap.
More than 150 volunteers – including swarms of Main Liners – stage the white-tie extravaganza each year and publish its cash-cow, photo-laden Program Book. (Truly, eye candy has never been so sweet.)
Ball tickets go for $350 for Young Friends and top off at just over $2,000 for high rollers – designer gown and blowout additional.
Best-kept Ball secret: For around $75, you can sit in the cheap seats and dress as you please. Of course, you won’t be able to sip, sup and rub elbows at the Bellevue.
Mindfulness is on many a Main Line mind these days.
Want in on the action or, more accurately, lack of action?
Your local hospital, yoga studio, health club or healing arts center is likely offering some sort of mindfulness training. (Or check out the Main Line Meditation Center in Ardmore.)
One place that’s been out front of the trend for years has been Verge. The popular yoga studio in Wayne just changed its name to Verge BodyMind, a nod to its dual focus.
The mantra of owner Cara Bradley: “Move your body and train your mind.”
Cara’s a self-proclaimed “mental strength coach.” Among her clients: CEOs, Great Valley School District staff, and the Villanova Men’s Basketball Team. (Judging by that last one alone, we’d say she’s pretty good at her job.)
Indeed it’s precisely that capacity to chill that allows whirling dervishes like Cara to do it all: run her studio, teach classes, lead workshops and write books (a second one on “bodymind fitness” is coming).
Sky’s the limit for this gal. Cara tells SAVVY she’s making plans to “go national.” Think online classes, conferences and corporate and team training. Ommmmm.
Talk about timely talks.
One of the area’s preeminent holistic healers, Dr. Jinghduan Yang, will speak in Rosemont next week about drug-free ways to help people recovering from opiate addiction.
Founder of the Yang Institute of Integrative Medicine in Bryn Mawr (formerly the Tao Institute), Dr. Yang will explain how all kinds of therapies – acupuncture, QEEG/Neurofeedback, advanced nutrient therapy, detox, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, Chinese herbal medicine and neuro-emotional technqiues – can help treat the root causes of addiction and aid in recovery.
U.S. board-certified in psychiatry and a fifth-generation Chinese medicine doctor, Dr. Yang is also a member of Mayor Kenney’s Anti-Drug Task Force in Philly.
Dr. Yang will speak Monday, Feb. 6 the New Leaf Club in Rosemont at 7 p.m. His talk is free and open to the public.
On a lighter note and just in time for Valentine’s Day… Deneen Marcel Lashes in Bryn Mawr is taking over the Main Line’s newest Love Shack, aka Twin Willows Estate, a new wedding/event venue in Malvern.
Alas, it’s a one-day love affair only – on Feb. 9.
Get your eyebrows shaped/tinted for $30 (down from $45) or luxurious new lashes for $200 (down from $300) while you roam the grand estate on Dutton Mill Road and indulge in a spirit or nibble.
The Fine Print: Call 267-386-6681 to book a slot from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 9 at Twin Willows. Pricing also good at Deneen Marcel studios in Bryn Mawr and Center City through Feb. 28. $50 deposit required. In-studio only special: brow microblading for $500 (usually $650).
A SAVVY shoutout to Deborah Van Cleve for transforming the lackluster Paoli Design Center into the pretty-in-pink Van Cleve Pavilion.
The longtime women’s cocktail and bridal boutique treated 130 of her friends, press and industry folks to a splashy soiree last week, officially unveiling her new 7,500 sq. ft. space.
She may be a tiny Texan but, oh, is she mighty.
A second shoutout to Malvern hoofer Karen Sauter and dance partner Evgeny Dyachenko.
The dynamic duo were Pro-Am Bronze American Smooth single dance winners at the 2017 Golden Star Dancesport Championships last weekend.
We hear Karen may need to put an addition on her home to display all those ballroom dancing trophies she’s been winning ’round the country.
Goin’ for the gold and dazzling us while you’re at it – now THAT’S what we call a snazzy midlife reinvention.
A SAVVY sendoff to an unassuming man who made a difference in our little corner of the world.
Alvin Terrell lived down the street from a crumbling old ruin in Malvern – the circa-1832 Ebenezer A.M.E. Church and graveyard (aptly named, right?).
With an able assist from Chester County blogger/preservationist Carla Zambelli, boy scouts, West Chester U. students and others, Al led the charge to clean up and restore the cemetery and church ruins, which include the graves of Civil War-era U.S. Colored Troops. (Yup, that’s their official name.)
Sadly, Al himself was buried a few weeks ago, after dying unexpectedly in his sleep at age 71.
The good man is gone, but his fight for old Ebenezer lives on.
And, finally, a ten-gun SAVVY salute to another patriot, a friend and yours truly’s former boss, Tom Murray, taken from us suddenly at age 54 by an apparent heart attack.
You may not have known him personally, but if you’ve read the Main Line Times, Main Line Suburban Life, Main Line Media News, the Daily Local, the King of Prussia Courier, or, back in its day, Main Line Life, you’ve been touched by Tom.
For many years, he was the guy responsible for what you saw on those pages. Everything you read about your hometown (except the ads) bore Tom’s editorial stamp.
Those of us who worked with Tom, respected him.
More than that, we liked him.
Even when we disagreed with him.
Even when we died a little inside after he printed a “letter to the editor” from a reader that trashed our reporting. (Yup, speaking from painful personal experience here.)
Because Tom was an old-school newsman. He lived to serve two things: you, dear reader, and the truth.
Sure, he knew clicks and circulation counted. But giving you a voice counted more – whatever your political persuasion or station.
Shooting the breeze, airing your differences out loud or in print – whether about a Phillies trade or a local election – those are our memories of Tom.
Much of it was small talk. But it mattered.
Like many who die before their time, Tom lived with gusto.
He was hard-wired to play, work and love … hard.
Among his many passions: his late wife, sons, granddaughter and fiancé (an engagement that was to have been announced on Valentine’s Day), the young athletes he coached and writers he mentored, sports teams of every stripe, and politics on every level.
He was a no-frills, lower Delco guy who migrated north and got the Main Line. Because he knew that a good story is a good story anywhere – whether it takes place in a row home or a horse show.
Writers, readers, sports fans, citizens – we are all better for having known Tom Murray.