The "Perfect Philly" in Two Days?
- ZenFoodist Aug 30, 2006 03:57 AM
Hi Philly 'Hounds :)
I'll be in The City of Brotherly Love for the weekend and am really looking forward to a few good meals, snacks, etc. I haven't been to Philly in a few years. If you had two days to design the perfect eating itinerary to best showcase your city's culinary treasures, what would be on your list? I'm going with a crowd of Serious Eaters and we're amenable to anything- from cheesesteaks to Buddakhan to Le Bec Fin- we don't discriminate when it comes to good food.
What would your perfect two days in Philly include? Breakfast and snack suggestions welcome also...
All Things Delish,
Gota do breakfast such as pancakes and scrapple at the Dutch Eating Place at Reading Terminal Market on Saturday (they are closed Sunday). On Sunday go to Morning Glory Cafe for challah french toast.
Lunch is admittedly a toughie on Saturday or Sunday since most fancier places are either closed or do the brunch thing. It's their loss because you could use the time to get a cheesesteak or better yet a roast pork sandwich. Tony Luke's is good (but a hike) but DiNic's (also in the Reading Terminal Market) was recently voted the #1 roast pork by Philadelphia Magazine. Also make sure to get a soft pretzel at Fisher's at the market too.
Dinner depends on how fancy you want to go... Le Bec Fin for French, Buddakan for decent food and more of a happening vibe. Also less known are Estia for fresh fish, Pasion for Nuevo Latino cusine. Of course there are a million good BYO's in the city. I am sure someone will recommend Ansill, and there's always Amada for pretty decent tapas.
I'd go to the Italian Market for lunch Saturday. No culinary tour of Philly is complete without it. Start your walk down 9th street with a loaf of piping hot bread from Sarcone's and eat it as you walk. They also have great slices of pizza and tomato pie. Try tacos from one of the taquerias. Get fresh mozzarella (still warm!) from Claudio's. Pick up spices at the spice store. Peruse Fante's and get kitchen tools you've always wanted but never needed. Sightsee in the amazing butcher, fish and produce stands. See the live chickens! There are also famous roast pork sandwich places, Pat's & Geno's cheesesteak places, and water ice places. Head back up 10th for the pita with zatar spices at Bitar's and the cannoli or anything else at Isgro's. Thank you.
Ahhh...Yes...the legendary Italian Market. I had a boyfriend at NYU whose Italian grandparents sold produce there decades ago. He spoke with such reverence about the market, and I've always wanted to go. On my last trip, it did not work out so it will be a "must" on this one. Thanks for refreshing my memory :)
You might try getting a reservation at Horizon's (South St. & 7th). I'm more excited about this place than any other that's opened recently in Philly, as evidenced by the fact that I've been going on about it every other post I write on this board lately. It's all vegan, but an excellent spot for anyone interested in trying something a little different:
Veg or no, it's pretty spectacular.
On my list (I realize this is dated since I've been away for a while, feedback requested):
Federal Soft Pretzels (fresh and hot)
Water Ice (is John's still around? Otherwise, I hear Rita's is good)
Cheesecake and Coffee at the Melrose Diner, preferably late at night.
I would add, for snacking and/or walking around ...
Capogiro Gelato (13th/Sansom or 20th/Sansom) anytime.
Bonte's belgian waffle (17th near Walnut, 10th (?) & Walnut)
KC's pastries (60 cents buys you a filled chinese bun), chinatown
Franklin Fountain (Market near 2nd) true old-fashioned ice cream fountain -- sundaes, malts, phosphates.
Also very good is the Naked Chocolate Cafe on Juniper and Walnut to cure any humger pangs left over from the other suggestions: http://www.nakedchocolatecafe.com
Also, I recently tried a relatively new place in Chinatown that has a good swiss roll (though not as good as in NYC) but a very good peanut butter coconut bun too (for all of 60 cents at that). It's called Green Land Tea House and it's at 210 N. 9th St.
I second the comments about the Italian Market and Capagiro, they are a must.
For breakfast I recommend you go to Rx in West Philly, it is a converted drug store - prepare to take your time there might be a wait.
For a good BYOB with a great chef I recommend Marigold Kitchen on 45th near the Baltimore ST end. For a good cheap time try The Restaurant School on Walnut ST in West Philly. Is a school for students interested in aspects of the restaurant business, they tend to make mistakes and be slow and clumsy; if you are ready for it the experience can be fun.
I recommend http://www.dailypennsylvanian.com/dgu... as a source of information about dining in Philly. Great search engine.