Scott Schroeder is too busy to deal with the end times that some Evangelical leaders have predicted will arrive tomorrow. When the apocalypse comes — it’s scheduled to arrive at 6 p.m. — the South Philly Tap Room chef will most likely be manning a grill and feeding the hungry masses who turn out for the bar and restaurant’s Sixth Annual Wheat Beer Festival, which will takeover part of S. Hicks Street at Mifflin. As if that’s not enough to keep his hands full, he’s simultaneously preparing Scott Dogs, the hot dog cart he and Southwark’s Nick Macri are planning to launch soon and getting the kitchen and menus together for American Sardine Bar’s debut in June. “Oh man, I wish they would hold off the rapture until at least Sunday,” Schroeder told Grub Street. “But if it does come Saturday, I hope I’m judged by the all the good things I’ve done, and not the bad stuff.”
Come Armageddon or not, Schroeder says his hot dog cart, which he originally hoped would be a part of Saturday’s wheat beer festival proceedings, will not be making its debut. There’s still much work to be done on it, and with American Sardine Bar, his boss John Longacre’s long-awaited venture at 17th and Federal, slated to open the second week of June, he simply hasn’t had enough time to get it together. He’s pushed Scott Dogs back so it makes its first appearance at the Food Trust’s Night Market, which takes place on during Philly Beer Week on June 9.
“I had hoped to have it ready by Saturday to, you know, have a dry run under my belt before Night Market,” Schroeder said. “But looks like we’re going to debut in front of thousands of people instead.”
In place of hot dogs he will be serving grilled elote (Mexican corn on the cob) with mayonnaise and cotija cheese and smoky pork sandwiches, grilled to order with with pork braised in Walt Wit and spicy cabbage.
Going forward, the busy chef will get a little busier, splitting his time between kitchen detail at the Tap Room and American Sardine Bar, which is expected to open after Beer Week ends. He was cagey about details on the menu, but insisted he will be hands on in both kitchens.
“I have the Tap Room set up now so it can run smooth without me being here,” he explained. “I’ll work here (at the Tap Room) in the morning and make sure the specials are all good to go, and then head over there (American Sardine Bar) in the afternoon and take care of evening service. The I’ll come back here, do the ordering, have a nightcap and go home.”