Philadelphia – City of Brotherly love (and food)

Its been quite a while since we last regaled you all with our culinary adventures.  So we will take a quick step back in time all the way back to Labor day weekend.  We decided that we could use a little bit of sight seeing but didn’t feel like shelling out for airplane tickets.  These two criteria led us to Philadelphia.  Turns out, its a pretty good city for sight seeing, shopping, museuming and of course, eating.

There are generally great places to see and eat where ever you go in Philly.  While any native would be quick to agree with this statement and breakout with a litany of their favorite haunts, dives, and finer places, this fact came to us as a bit of a surprise.

We arrived on Friday afternoon and enjoyed a walk around the city, just getting our bearings and learning our way around.  We ended up walking much further than we thought we would and by the time we were ready for dinner we found ourselves on South Street.  We stopped in to Brauhaus Schmitz.  Self-described as Philadelphia’s only authentic German Bierhall and Restaurant, it lives up to its name with authentic foods and a great beer list.

If you are staying downtown you should be sure to visit the Redding Terminal Market. The market is one of those places we wish we had in D.C., A cavernous space that actually sells farm fresh produce without paying Whole Foods prices.  We dined on a remarkable tender pastrami sandwich and a hot pretzel for dessert.

Saturday we visited the usual tourist places, like Independence Hall and the oldest continually inhabited ally in the U.S.  But I must give special attention to the Constitution Center.  It was great.  Every American should visit this building.  There is a terrific movie/floor show about the founding of our nation, wonderful exhibits and a special room with life size statues of the members of the Constitutional Convention that brings these storied individuals off of the pedestals and literally eye to eye with you.  Just a well done museum.

Saturday night we decided to sneak away from our love of street food and get down to some serious dining at Morimoto.  This is some serious sushi.  D.C. can be proud of many of its raw fish establishments, but few have the skills shown here.  Add in the great Tokyo-styled modern decor and you are in for an experience.

After cocktails at the bar, Julie decided that she wanted duck rather than seafood and wasn’t disappointed.  I on the other hand went for a chef’s surprise and was rewarded with a very large plate of food. Some drinks and appetizers thrown in for the mix and we were sated and happy as could be.  Our walk back to the hotel took us to Capogiro, a great little gelato parlor and the perfect wrapper to a great day.

Sunday Brunch was at Jones, with its amazing custard infused french toast.  This was just the motivator to get us moving and prepare us for the trip to the Italian Market on 9th Street.  We stopped into a couple of shops including, butchers, and grocers, but generally just walked by the street vendors and enjoyed the colors and sounds.

Julie ducked into a spice shop and bought just about everything in sight.

We also purchased some fresh sweet peppers from a street vendor and a variety of cheeses and delicious meats from D’Angelo Brothers meat market (you got to love any place that serves you meat and cheese while you are buying other meats and cheeses).

There was no way Julie was going to get me out of this city without a cheese steak.  Our visit to Pat’s was memorable if only for Julie agreeing that cheese whiz tastes better when eating the original.  We made one last stop at Isgro Pasticceria for a few cannolis for the road and we were DC bound.

All in all, a great weekend away – and only a two hour drive.

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2 Responses to Philadelphia – City of Brotherly love (and food)

  1. I am yet to go to Philly, can you believe that? It is on my list- this might just be the motivation I need to get us there.

  2. laura jean says:

    Brauhaus Schmitz is owned by my friend from elementary school – I’m glad you had a good visit there!

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