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Skippack Village

Stopped by Dreamcatcher today and then tried to stroll over to Skippack Pizza. Big mistake. Cars were blocking the only nearby crosswalk. They could have at least left a little space for pedestrians if they were stuck in traffic.
When I finally got across the pepperoni rolls and service were excellent at the pizza place. I noticed new shops including a cupcake bakery that seemed to close earlier than hours indicated and also a new comic book and collectible shop that I want to check out soon. But the traffic is frightening in skippack. Don't most towns have a speed limit? On the way back the crosswalk was unblocked but I had to wait awhile for a kind car to stop and allow me to cross. Thank goodness someone did stop in the opposing lane as well.
Is browsing the shops in Skippack mostly a morning and early afternoon thing when the traffic is theoretically lighter? I wish some of the merchants would play secret shopper for a day and view their charming village through the eyes of traumatized pedestrians by strolling around and just trying to cross the street. I know changing the speed limit would be hard with all the traffic zooming through to get to collegeville and such but could the town consider having a traffic cop to encourage allowing people to cross at the cross walks? Chef paulo you live up that way, what is the deal here? I'm only posting because I love skippack but it is not a relaxing place to walk. /tremble

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  1. Someone correct me if I am wrong...but is the speed limit through Skippcak 35mph...or does it drop to 25mph? I don't go there very often, but when I drive through I do make sure that I stop for people wanting to cross the road. I have had driver's behind me hunk/yell...and I just wave and yell that Jesus loves them.

    4 Replies
      1. re: crazyspice

        I drive through there every day, and no one is going 25 mph!

        Skippack is cute and has some interesting shops/restaurants. But I think the best food is actually farther down the road in what is technically Cedars, specifically Olce Pizza and 19 Bella for tapas. In fact, Olce's crispy thin crust pizza with interesting toppings are worth a drive from far afield (also it's BYOB and super kid-friendly).

        http://olcepizza.com
        http://www.19bella.com

        Also, The Grand Formage in Skippack is an excellent cheese shop, with a very knowledgeable and friendly owner (he'll often give you a free coffee or taste of port while you are waiting!).

        http://www.thegrandfromage.com

        But Skippack could be so much more than it is. Pity the town council (or whatever) doesn't take a stronger stand on things like the speeding or plethora of ugly signs.

        I've often wondered about the speeding as I've speed through!

        1. re: PhillyBestBYOB

          I'll vote a +1 for Olce Pizza. Kevin got a "Best of Philly" award for his toppings his first year open, and deservedly so.

          I've also had good experience at 19 Bella. BTW, I last had lunch at 19 Bella with Percyn. He doesn't seem to be around anymore. Are you out there?
          CP

          1. re: Chefpaulo

            we ate at 19 Bella once and liked it quite a bit. we have family out towards there. Prertty rare for us to head out to the burbs for dinner, certainly not that far out, but if I had to be out there for other reasons, I'd try to arrange dinner there again.

    1. traffic has been nuts in Skippack every time I've been. It's a lovely town, and the idea of wandering is so nice, but in reality it's a nightmare. We've actually stopped visiting because it seems we're taking our lives in our hands to cross the street.

      1. It sounds like traffic is pretty terrible in this town, but the state of traffic is getting a little far afield for Chowhound -- can we ask that people try to focus mainly on what food is (or isn't) worth braving the traffic for in Skippack? Thanks!

        2 Replies
          1. re: The Chowhound Team

            Quite right, CH Team! Kind of you not to delete the OP but what about the rest of us?? UGH!

          2. I have never been to Skippack Pizza. I will say, I am not much of a fan of Basta Pasta.

            5 Replies
            1. re: crazyspice

              we've eaten at basta pasta, would not go back. we did have a lovely brunch a couple years ago... and now I can't remember the name of the place. maybe the fat cat cafe?

              1. re: jujuthomas

                I really enjoy Parc Bistro! It's a tad spendy, but sitting outdoors in the nice weather is a real treat.

                1. re: crazyspice

                  Had a great dinner there two weeks ago with friends, 2 entrees with six large nicely done and tasty scallops each , 1 entree with 2 large crab cakes, and salads. All enjoyed their food and drinks. Nice place, usually ok service and yes a tad pricy. Quite right, the al fresco dinning is very nice in their back garden area.

                  1. re: Bacchus101

                    I have found that while slowing down while eating will in fact detract from the enjoyment of the meal. This is especially true with sushi and creme brulee. Certain foods have to be eaten at break neck speeds.

                    1. re: cwdonald

                      Been thinking about this cw and also the opposite which is more obvious, foods that are hard to eat fast. Would love to start a thread on this in General to see what other hounds think. Or better yet respond to yours if you start one.
                      Do you think the setting affects the speed of eating? I know fast food places do things to encourage turn over. My friend and I have been choosing outside dining even on the hottest days. We have eaten outside at Bonefish Grill, Baja Fresh, and Skippack Pizza and when it is sweltering I can't imagine eating anything rapidly.

            2. Carbs, I couldn't agree more about the traffic and speeding situation; concerns that should be heard by restaurateurs and maybe a politician can get a few speed bumps put in. With the regional barracks on the edge of town, a bit more State Police presence would be appreciated. Maybe an occasional sting operation would get the word out, or at least have one of those speed sensor displays at both ends of town.

              On to my other Skippack critique, I ate at Parc Bistro just last night and had my first "meh" experience since my first visit. While food was still excellent under Chef Bill, service and attitude were only two stars out of five. Bartendress was mildly annoyed that I requested my favorite Polish potato vodka that they no longer carry. Compromising with a Grey Goose, the portion was notably less than all previous times. My Caesar salad was also smaller (and did not arrive with requested anchovies) but Bouillabaisse was quite good. The noise level of the bar finally got to my head so I forewent dessert to leave for the quiet of my pool deck. Lo and behold, I checked my bank account this morning to find I was not only charged for my fare but someone else as well. A call assured this charge will be reversed.

              I've been a satisfied regular since they opened. However, everyone has their price point and mine is getting precariously close to a "nay" with Parc Bistro.
              CP

              5 Replies
                1. re: Chefpaulo

                  Good thing you checked your bank account promptly CP. I've been trying to pay with cash more often. It helps that most of the places I buy corn and such do not take cc.
                  So what is the name of this potato vodka? Sounds yummy. It is a shame about the service. The great migration begins soon of college students. I've noticed for years that service brightens in may, it was really noticeable this year because of the bad economy, many of the students who wanted jobs seemed very relieved to be working. The pendulum swings the other way starting in late July when the students know they will soon be outta there.

                  1. re: givemecarbs

                    Carbs, The vodka is Luksusowa. Much less expensive than Absolut or Kettel One but much smoother. It's the best buy out there and the 750ml. is on sale this month.

                    As for the college migration, I can't believe that all are returning earlier and earlier every year. I went back around September 10th or a day or two later. I have one client starting college this year in North Carolina on August 15th.

                    For those of us who remember Zaberer's iconic restaurant on the Black Horse Pike, Ed had a great way of keeping his help. Back in the 50's and 60's, he'd hire and train young people with the promise of a $100 bonus at the end of the season (great bucks back then) if they stayed until the last contracted day. If they came back in subsequent years (seasoned and no longer needing training) he'd give $200 as the second year bonus, $300 for the third, $400 for the fourth and, if you stayed for five years, he bought you a car.
                    That was one savvy businessman.
                    CP

                    1. re: Chefpaulo

                      Wow Zaberer's! Now I want some king crab legs. I had them there for the first time with my grandparents. And the roll basket with the mini cinnamon rolls. Oh my gosh! What a great story CP. Wild wild Wildwood days.
                      I've been meaning to try the Black Dog in Skippack. I always eye it after a lovely visit with Donna at Dreamcatcher. A couple of the outside tables were full the other day I saw. And I wouldn't have to cross the road. Anyone been to black dog recently? I'll put that vodka on my list, thank you.

                  2. re: Chefpaulo

                    CP, Interestingly, while our dinner with friends was well received by all a couple of weeks ago, I did notice that the waitress was just a bit too casual & familiar often confused for friendly. Also on other occasions we have notice a bit too much attitude not unlike what you got at the bar. The prices have been noted as on the high side and getting close to too much. I would like to see the "management" manage these issues. Add what is frequently nothing short of a cacophony and as you say we are also close to a "nay"!