Elevating the ‘Phillyzuelan’ Palate
Armed with a natural-born talent and a cultivated passion for cooking, Chef Judith Suzarra-Campbell is revolutionizing the modern restaurant business in Philadelphia by providing homestyle Venezuelan meals, and by putting quality and tradition over unnecessary pizzaz and big-name chains.
“I told myself that I would never, ever, get into cooking. I saw how hard that work was. The hours, the dedication. My mom was a cook, my dad was a cook, my grandma, my aunt. So, I studied accounting at Universidad Santa Maria, and for a while I had an assembly company in Philadelphia with my husband, but it was no use… Cooking is in my blood, it’s in my veins. I couldn’t ignore it.”
I would like people to be open-minded about my cuisine without criticizing. Eat, enjoy, and go with the flow of the experience.
Since 2004, Sazón has been a beacon of authentic Venezuelan charm and cuisine on 10th and Spring Garden Street, enticing both “Phoodie” adventurers who have stereotypical expectations of Latin American grub, and Hispanics who need a reminder of the towns they left behind, to return once more.
"I’m very proud of my cuisine, I’m very proud of being Venezuelan, so I try to do whatever I can to transmit that through my cuisine, and through my passion. I love bringing memories to Venezuelans, who say my food feels like home. This is the way I show my love for what I do and my country. My husband always says ‘You love your arepas and your cooking more than you love me’, jaja, that’s not true! But, you need to do it right, and you do it right through love."
Chef Judith brought the warmth of healthy homestyle Venezuelan cuisine to the public at Independence Live, for free, thanks to AL DÍA News. Specifically, along with Sazón favorites, Chef Judith contributed a taste of a unique and traditional Christmas platter, hallacas, which is only served at her restaurant in December. Likewise, Robert, the “Chocolate Alchemist”, brought his famous hot chocolate, which has been renowned and recognized by local papers as simply being one of the best in the City. Chef Judith, her husband, her crew, and her customers, joined us for our fifth live cooking demonstration series (“Meet the Chef’s Transforming Philadelphia’s Cuisine”) yesterday, November 28th.
We are looking forward to our sixth and final live cooking demonstration for 2017, coming soon on Thursday, December 14th. We will be joined by the owners of Café Liz, Jacinta and Felito!