Fresh Pasta in Philly? and other ?'s
I just moved to the area and live near Rittenhouse Square. Are there any shops semi-nearby (in Central City) that sell fresh pasta? can you recommend good cheese shops? are there any mediterranean grocery stores?
p.s. what is the Italian Market like?
Mediterranean coves a vastness that probably is not to be found in any one spot but if you look through the Philly Chowhound message board, you will see Bitar's at 10th and Federal mentioned several times as having great falafel, etc. It's one block off the Italian Market so you can check it out when you're stocking up on cheese and such.
You should be very pleased with the quality and variety of fresh foods available in Philadelphia. The Italian Market is a good first stop for fresh pasta. There are several pasta shops on and around 9th Street. The best fresh pasta (IMHO) is in NJ at Severino's retail shop on Haddon Avenue in Westmont. It is about a 15 minute ride over the Ben Franklin bridge, and well worth the trip. Severino products are also available at Fresh Fields and other area markets. But nothing beats the really fresh selection at their store.
As far as cheese goes, you can check out Claudio's or DiBruno's at the Italian market. DiBruno's also has a shop on 18th Street, just below Chestnut which is probably quite convenient for you. They also have DiBruno Pronto next door, which is great upscale take-out and gourmet products. Also in Rittenhouse area is Metropolitan Bakery on 19th Street just below the square. Real European style crusty breads and gourmet products - YUM! Fresh Fields also has a good cheese department, albeit pricey by comparison with the other places mentioned.
There aren't really any "Mediterranean" groceries, other than the places already mentioned, but there are some Farmer's Markets around town on various days during the summer. There is one at 17th and South. I think on Wednesdays or Thursdays. Saturday mornings there is the Head House Square farmer's market on 2nd Street between Pine and South Streets. Wonderful fresh produce and other products from Lancaster County. There is a guy that makes his own goat cheese that is absolutely divine (the cheese, not the cheese guy, although he's very nice...). There is also a great selection of Asian markets along Washington Avenue (at 16th Street, 11th Street and 6th Street are three really big ones). You should be able to find almost anything you want. The Italian Market should keep you busy exploring for at least a few weeks to start. Anastasio produce on Christian street supplies all the restaurants in town with the nicest (read: pricey but high quality) produce and fresh herbs, DiAngelo's on 9th Street has fresh sausages and game. Let us know exactly what you're looking for and we can probably be more specific. Good luck and happy chow explorations to you!
I'm not sure, but Pronto on 18th between Chestnut and Sansom might sell fresh pasta Another possibility would be Patina on 20th between Locust and Spruce.
Wolf's Market between 15th and 16th on Locust is another.
All three specialize in what could be called gourmet home replacement meals. Gourmet restaurant type food to take out.
DiBruno Brothers has a cheese shop on 18th, about 2 stores away from Pronto, happens to be owned by then.
DiBruno Brothers is a really good cheese shop, their main branch in the Italian market exports all around the U.S.
As for the Italian market, it's great for buying stuff for home. The freshest produce, fish, meats, cheeses, pasta, bread, etc.
For produce, the stand on the northeast corner of 10th and Washington is the best (don't remember the name).
For meat, Esposito's on 10th north of Washington is well liked.
For cheeses, the aforementioned DiBruno Bros has a shop here, I think on 10th. They have a website you can browse. Claudio's is also very good.
Bread, Sarcone's on 9th south of Fitzwater, which is in turn 2 blocks south of South St. Don't actually recall how far south.
Another one I like is an Asian bakery in the shopping center at 6th and washington. it's the one up front, set apart from the rest. 4 rolls for a buck, they also make good sandwiches, $2 each, buy 5 get 1 free.
If you don't want to travel so far, Reading Terminal at 12th and Arch (15-20 minute walk from Rittenhouse Square) is closer, but prices for everything aren't as good.
re: Herb Lau
I would agree with the other posters who mentioned DiBrunos as a great cheese / Italian grocery. Since you mentioned fresh pasta, I thought I would add Superior Pasta, right in your neighborhood, although it is manufactured in the Italian Market. They sell fresh pastas, sauces and premade pasta dishes (i.e. lasagna, eggplant parm). I have included their address and phone number. Ciao and Bon Appetito!
Rittenhouse Square, PA
222 West Rittenhouse Square
I was wondering why it took 4 replies before someone mentioned Superior Pasta on Rittenhouse Square.
As for Italian Market, some important info for the orig poster:
All stores are open Tues-Sat all day, Sunday from 8 to 1pm and closed on Mondays.
The produce stands are not as prevalent on Tues to Thursday. Frida-Sunday is best days. And, it's always surprised me, that prices do not drop on produce as noon approaches on Sundays since the stands are closed till at least Tuesday.
Sorry to be responding to such an old posting - just found this site today. Re Italian market prices: I think I've noticed that prices actually are generally higher on Sundays than weekdays. And: I once got 8 pounds of tomatos for $1 toward 4PM - the guy was trying to sell out before end of day! I oven roasted them (much better than sun-dried).