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Everything posted by MarketStEl

  1. You sound a little like Dana Cowin. ISTR her problem with Philadelphia's food scene is that while there's a lot of good stuff here, there are very few examples of truly outstanding anything. Yet somehow the whole was greater than the sum of its parts. Sarcone's reputation is based on the quality of its bread, and as any hoagie maven could tell you, bread ain't beanbag when it comes to making a great sandwich; Sarcone's is about the best you can get in Philly. But neither are the meats and accompaniments, and while Philadelphians' loyalty to the hometown boys is admirable, there's much better
  2. Actually, I've been meaning to collar Paul on one of my regular visits (he's usually there on Saturdays), so I probably can, BHF. But on further thought, there also seems to be a rough form of "zoning" at the RTM that this would disrupt a bit. The 12th Street wall of the market is a Restaurant Row of sorts, with even the few ingredient vendors fronting the westernmost aisle also offering prepared foods to eat. The ingredient vendors tend to be located inside the Market, with only Iovine's Produce having a significant exterior exposure along the Filbert Street wall. The two categories of vendo
  3. Actually, I'm one of those fortunate people who can walk to work, which I try to do most times, unless the weather is bad. When it was really bad this winter the Police Chief picked me up and drove me to work at City Hall. The ultimate in public transportation. I walk to most places I'm invited to. I can walk to 38 restaurants. Imagine that, in the country even. I drive to the grocery store, because the way back is uphill about a mile and a quarter and I'm 50. I'm thrifty but not stupid. And yes, I do buy non local foods too. Especially out of season and the obvious citrus not availab
  4. Someone's gonna get a talking-to at the DEP on Saturday morning? This might be an excuse for me to get my cheese platter for a party that afternoon early. I was thinking of doing an all-local, Fair Food Farmstand edition (I've established a reputation among my fellow PGMCers that I must now live up to), but need notes on the cheeses. I assume the folks there will be able to give me descriptions. I tried some 1841 last week and liked it. If you're in my neck of the woods, ue, and it looks like you will be, drop me a line. If I'm free, I may be able to meet up.
  5. We locals ought to, but the area gets a larger-than-normal share of visitors from beyond, "beyond" here defined as anything you can't get to with a plain-vanilla TransPass and no zone fare. It's sort of like having those guys who toss the fish right underneath the giant neon sign and clock at the Pike Place Market. The only problem with this logic is that the Rick's Steaks space is not the first thing many, or even most IMO, visitors to the RTM see. It's my impression that the most heavily used entrance to the RTM is the one at its southwest corner, on 12th just north of Filbert -- it's where
  6. See what happens when I leave these boards for a while? Several of these places are not all that difficult to get to on SEPTA, though the hassle factor varies. I'd rank them as follows in terms of overall convenience: Talk of the Town Tony Luke's (depending on time of day) Grey Lodge John's Roast Pork Steve's Prince of Steaks As mentioned before, Talk of the Town is right on the Broad Street Subway, 3 blocks S of Oregon station, where the Walt Whitman Bridge expressway passes over Broad. Travel time from Center City (City Hall station) is a mere 8 minutes. Tony Luke's is at Front and Oregon,
  7. Since this thread is still live, I will add that after wowing my friend Vince, his partner Brian and their guests with ribs I prepared at their Memorial Day cookout in Fox Chase, one of my favorite BBQ places in Philly is: Wherever I can get my hands on a charcoal grill. I talked these two into buying one instead of a propane model a couple of months ago; on Memorial Day, they learned why.
  8. Even though I think Daniel is right that the basic positions in this debate have been pretty much fully and fairly aired, there are some comments made since I last checked in that I would like to expand on further, and will do so later, when I have a litttle more leisure time than I do right now. But for the moment, a comment of Daniel's: reminds me of one of my favorite witticisms: "Any society that tolerates shoddy philosophy because philosophy is a noble calling, but ignores excellence in plumbing because plumbing is a mere trade, will not long endure, for neither its theories nor its pip
  9. Best line in the followup comments, in response to the people protesting the alleged cruelty involved in producing foie:
  10. Should've given me a shout-out, Mike! You know I'm always up for wings, and Moriarty's has three floors open on weekends now.
  11. I sense in this debate an undercurrent of argument to the effect that we as humans as much as the planet as a whole are the worse off for increasing global trade. Yet human history surely suggests otherwise, for from well before the days of the Silk Road, people in various cultures around the world have sought things they have heard of that are unavailable within the confines of their own society. The Italians would never have had pasta had Marco Polo not traveled to China, nor tomatoes had it not been for Columbus bringing some back from the Western Hemisphere. The Silk Road itself was named
  12. Preach, brother, preach!
  13. I understand that in Poland, the birthday celebrant is feted with the toast "Sto lat" -- "May you live 100 years!" I don't know whether there's a similar toast in the Czech Republic, but if there is, imagine I'm saying it now -- may you live 100 years! Enjoyed this blog thoroughly!
  14. Bob: The last thing we need is someone who writes bad promotional copy teaching others how to write it too. Better you send the writer to my re-education camp.
  15. Well, I note that Pennsylvania has yet to name an official state dessert, but I suspect if it did, it would be shoo fly pie. However, the official state beverage -- milk -- is a common ingredient in many desserts.
  16. The Phillyblog discussion board host is down for maintenance right now (3:53 PM ET, 25 Apr 2008); it's been having some serious issues with connection resets and slow response. When it's back up, try doing a search within Phillyblog for the phrase "American Hyacinth Bucket", or for posts by MarketStEl. I'm even more prolix and prolific there than here. Agreed about "Keeping Up Appearances." Patricia Routledge's character is one of the greats of TV comedy, and the basic premise of the sitcom is inspired. Even though it works much better in the British context than in the American, I'm surpris
  17. I think that while elitism requires exclusion, exclusion alone is not enough to warrant the charge that something is elitist. Any membership organization is by definition exclusive if there are qualifications for belonging, but if those qualifications are not arbitrary or difficult to meet, then the organization probably won't be perceived as elitist. Usually, the distinction between exclusion and elitism hinges on superiority, or the perception of same. One could be talking about $5 pints of beer, but if the talk suggests that somehow a person that drinks this particular $5 pint of beer has
  18. I'll know more after this weekend's run of grocery shopping. As it would happen, I'm out of rice. I prepare it less often than I did in the past, because one roommate has a visual aversion to it, but I always have some on hand. I don't expect to see two-digit prices for the small one-pound bags I often buy now. Good points, Ducks. In those occasional surveys that ask people their opinions of various professions, journalists usually rate very low on the scale, often below members of Congress. Since the majority of practitioners of the craft are educated not in the subjects they report on, b
  19. Are those "Kolonada" wafers meant to be filled or spread with something, or just eaten plain? Except for the embossings, they look to me like oversized communion wafers. I assume, though, that they have far more flavor than those, and that they are on the sweet side. Now pardon me while I clean the drool off my keyboard. Everything looks lovely, and since I have sour cream, paprika and onions on hand, I guess I'll have to buy a chicken (and a new Crock-Pot; the hinged lid on my current one's broken) over the weekend.
  20. Nice working in of the tram shot! I understand that the Czech Republic-based manufacturer ČKD Tatra is the only company now making streetcars using the legendary (Electric Railway) Presidents' Conference Committee design and technology developed in the 1930s (those rounded, streamlined trolleycars you see on Market Street in San Francisco are "PCCs"); the car in that photo looks like it has the PCC DNA in it. (A quick Wikipedia search confirms this: the tram in this picture is a Tatra T3, apparently still the most common tram on Prague streets, in modernized form.) Now: does Popcorn sell popc
  21. You can still find Frank's sodas around, but not as widely as you could before the company was sold to an outfit in Elizabeth, NJ. There is now a local boutique soda bottler called Hank's that makes a good Black Cherry Wishniak.
  22. Thanks for all your answers, and I'm looking forward to the rest of the week. (FTR: 55-minute suburban train ride from central Philadelphia to a far suburb, with a five-minute walk at each end of the trip.) All those Czech foods sound yummy. That sirloin dish sounds like main course and dessert rolled into one, and therefore intriguing. Wonder how the sweetness of the berries and whipped cream plays off the rich, savory flavor of the beef? But what I'd like to see is: Are these anything like fried mozzarella sticks? Or is a softer cheese like cream cheese used? Speaking of cream cheese: I
  23. Hello and welcome to the ranks of eG foodbloggers! I assume your posting handle derives from your time in Israel? What led you to choose it? (Rehoboth Beach, Del., is a popular vacation spot for both Philadelphians and Washingtonians. Variant spelling, I realize.) Do you live in central Prague? If so, then greetings, fellow reverse commuter, from eG's resident transit geek. What do you take? Bus, tram, metro, or suburban train, or some combination of the foregoing? (I know it's somewhat off-topic, but as these foodblogs are part gastronomic diary and part travelogue, if you can work in a
  24. Actually, I meant "a better buy than traveling to Spain for some," but no matter -- I see I have no excuse not to pick up some La Quercia prosciutto on a future shopping trip. That Whole Foods is right across the street from my primary supermarket, as chronicled in my first foodblog.
  25. I note with approval the institutional-size jar of cayenne pepper in your dinner shots from yesterday. I take this to be a sign that you and Mr. Kim love spicy foods. Does gastric bypass surgery affect your ability to consume hot or spicy dishes? I know that people with kidney failure must avoid them (as well as whole grain bread, much to my consternation. No, my kidneys are fine -- I have a diabetic roommate [type 1] whose kidneys gave out. But I avoid plain old soft white bread unless I'm making grilled cheese sandwiches or French toast.)
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