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rlibkind

Reading Terminal Market (Part 2)

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[Moderator note: The original Reading Terminal Market topic became too large for our servers to handle efficiently, so we've divided it up; the preceding part of this discussion is here: Reading Terminal Market (Part 1)]

As scheduled, Foster's Gourmet Cookware pulled up stakes after the close of business last Saturday. So if you want to buy a kitchen gadget at the RTM you're out of luck. Market GM Paul Steinke still looking to sign a vendor in that line, but nothing yet. Foster's reopens Aug. 1 at 399 Market, consolidating the kitchen-centric stock of the RTM outlet with the home style offerings of the Third Street store.


Edited by Mjx Moderator note added. (log)

Bob Libkind aka "rlibkind"

Robert's Market Report

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The baby arugula we got from Fair Food today is one of the best things I've ever eaten. I've been eating it as a snack, plain.

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i love that stuff.

i can highly recommend the fresh chickens from green meadow farm they're carrying now too. but the poussins from griggstown are also rockin.

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i love that stuff.

i can highly recommend the fresh chickens from green meadow farm they're carrying now too.  but the poussins from griggstown are also rockin.

interesting... we had a fresh green meadow farm chicken recently and were not at all impressed -- ours was pretty flavorless. apparently the green meadow farm fresh chickens have replaced the meadow run farm fresh chickens, which you and i were both excited about a while ago -- did you ever try a fresh MRF chicken when fair food had them? we tried one, and it was just awful.

tonight we made the last of the frozen MRF chickens from last season that we had and it was absolutely unbelievably good. with the plain baby arugula next to it i was pretty much flipping out at dinner tonight. the texture of the breast was pretty spongy because, i presume, of the freezing, but i'll take that texture any day for chicken that tastes this good.

maybe this season, for whatever reason, hasn't been as kind to the MRF chickens?

i haven't had the poussins from griggstown, but i picked up a broiler directly from the farm and it was mediocre. their quail, of course, is fantastic.

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the green meadow chicken i had rocked the house. but now i'm hesitant to get another one if you've gotten more than one that sucked; maybe it was a fluke.

the poussin was really everything you expect that bird to be--a very tender little chicken, delicately flavored but not bland; i liked it.

there's another chicken vendor at the sunday market; i picked up some of her eggs this week and they were damn good but $5. i may check out the chicken next; see what i think.

p.s. edited to say: if the green meadow chicken you had wasn't good, and the meadow run wasn't either, and the griggstown one wasn't that great either, i'm wondering if it is actually a bad spring for chickens somehow... and how we'd know.


Edited by mrbigjas (log)

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What's up with those fresh chickens from Meadow Run? I got one last week to give to Leslie, my office mate. It had a Meadow Run label on it, though as I said in an earlier post, there was an accompanying explanation that I unfortunately zoned out on due to insufficient caffeination.

Their frozen ones have never disappointed me- yes, shilling for Philip is one of my favorite pastimes- in fact, it's some of the best chicken I've ever had. Moreover, I trust my buddy to cook a chicken properly, and she said the fresh one came out dry and flavorless.

Though it goes to good places, of course, I'm not trying to spend $11 to $13 on one just to find out for myself. Interesting question about it maybe being a bad spring for chickens somehow. I'm trying to do a little research into that from work, here.

Agreed that the baby arugula (It's from Farmdale Organics, right?) is awesome. I threw that in a tofu scramble with some mushrooms from Iovine's the other day. I so miss Oley Valley when they're gone.

Is anyone else into the Overbrook Herb Farms salad mix? It's not always around, but it's just so good to me. Dry and spicy and pretty and delicious.


"What was good enough yesterday may not be good enough today." - Thomas Keller

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Jersey tomatos have arrived at Iovine Brothers Produce:

gallery_7493_1206_96749.jpg

Everyone else appears to have greenhouse tomatos. But the local field tomatoes should start to appear in two to three weeks. Get ready!

Langoustines (a.k.a. scampi, Dublin prawns, etc.) usually sell for close to $20 a pound, frozen, imported from Thailand or other Southeast Asian producers. Golden Seafood had them for $8.99 today, already thawed. I bought a pound (about five langoustines) even though I figured they're on sale because they're already defrosted and have a very short shelf life. They'll get grilled tomorrow (doubt I'll be able to eat them tonight after Pizza Club) and I'll report on the quality.

The Livengood Family will host its annual farm tour and corn roast for customers on Sunday, July 29, on the Morningside Drive farm on the outskirts of Lancaster. The evening meal will be pot luck. For details, stop by the stand Saturday at the RTM, Tuesday at the South & Passyunk Market, 3-7 p.m., or Thursday at the Fairmount Market, also 3-7 p.m. Or call the Livengoods at 717 464-2698.

Cactus pears (also known as prickly pears or, in Israel, sabra), have been back at Iovine's for the past two weeks, $1.99/pound. Usually I find them at O.K. Lee during the season, which runs from now through late fall, but not this week. Among Iovine's other offerings: English cucumbers two for a buck; hydroponic red peppers (slight scars), two pounds for $1; green bell peppers 99 cents, orange and yellows, $1.99.

Local string beans of various types are plentiful. Earl Livengood is charging $3.95 a pint for green beans, wax beans and yellow Roma (flat) beans. Benuel Kauffman's wax and green beans go for $2.99/pound. Since I didn't weigh Earl's, can't say which is a better bargain.

Berries and cherries remain plentiful. Here's the price breakdown. All are from local orchard except Iovine, which is offering West Coast dark cherries).

Dark sweet cherries: $2.99/pound Iovine, $4.30 pint/$9.00 quart Fair Food Farmstand, $3.95/$6.95 Benuel Kauffman, $3.95/$6.95 Earl Livengood.

Queen Anne cherries: $4.75/$9.50 Fair Food, $3.95/$6.95 Kauffman.

Pie (sour) cherries: $4.00/$7.50 Fair Food, $6.95/quart Kaufman, $2.95/$5.50 Livengood.

Blueberries: $4.00/$7.50 Fair Food, $4.95 pint Kauffman, $4.50 Livengood.

Red raspberries (half-pint): $4.00 Fair Food, $3.95 Kauffman, $3.95 Livengood. Black rasperries $3.00 at Kauffman's.

A very brief shopping list for me this week, since I'll be visiting Headhouse Square tomorrow:

IOVINE BROTHERS PRODUCE ($2.94)

Lemons

Limes

Bananas

EARL LIVENGOOD (Approx. $8.50)

Dark cherries

Red onion

KAUFFMAN'S LANCASTER COUNTY PRODUCE

Black raspberries

GOLDEN SEAFOOD ($9.26)

Langoustines

HERSHEL'S EAST SIDE DELI ($4.30)

Lox


Bob Libkind aka "rlibkind"

Robert's Market Report

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Langoustines (a.k.a. scampi, Dublin prawns, etc.) usually sell for close to $20 a pound, frozen, imported from Thailand or other Southeast Asian producers. Golden Seafood had them for $8.99 today, already thawed. I bought a pound (about five langoustines) even though I figured they're on sale because they're already defrosted and have a very short shelf life. They'll get grilled tomorrow (doubt I'll be able to eat them tonight after Pizza Club) and I'll report on the quality.

You get what you pay for. In this case, mush. Either defrosted improperly or simply sitting in water too long. Whatever. Not spoiled, mind you, as in dangerous to eat. But not pleasant. The flavor was barely okay. But the texture was awful. FWIW, I grilled them with a butter-fish sauce-lime juice baste.


Bob Libkind aka "rlibkind"

Robert's Market Report

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It's been years since I got to have lunch at RTM and am headed there tomorrow. Two hungry adults + baby in tow--what should we be sure to get? We're up for anything!


Food is a convenient way for ordinary people to experience extraordinary pleasure, to live it up a bit.

-- William Grimes

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Go to Rick's for the litigation special...


Charlie, the Main Line Mummer

We must eat; we should eat well.

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get a nice pork sandwich from dinics.  with greens and sharp provolone.

What he said. Though I can understand one being hijacked by a Salumeria prosciutto hoagie with all the fixings, including artichokes and house dressing. Or even a pastrami sandwich at one of the RTM's newest additions since you left for Spotted Cow Country: Hershel's East Side Deli, which puts Ella's Deli to shame. (If you do go for the pastrami, ask them not to trim all the fat off -- lean pastrami is a sin.) Just save room to beat the heat with a dish of ice cream at Bassetts.


Bob Libkind aka "rlibkind"

Robert's Market Report

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Or even a pastrami sandwich at one of the RTM's newest additions since you left for Spotted Cow Country: Hershel's East Side Deli, which puts Ella's Deli to shame. (If you do go for the pastrami, ask them not to trim all the fat off -- lean pastrami is a sin.) Just save room to beat the heat with a dish of ice cream at Bassetts.

I'll heartily second both of these recommendations. Hershel's pastrami Reuben is shamefully delicious, though a hair on the pricey side (and worth every penny).

Bassett's 'Gadzooks' flavor is singularly worth the visit.

get a nice pork sandwich from dinics.  with greens and sharp provolone.

Tried one a month or so ago, and it was just OK - the flavors didn't work well together for me. The taste was overwhelmingly that of sharp provolone, with bland pork and lots of liquid from the greens. I did like the sautéed spinach, but felt that it made the whole thing unmanageably soggy.

Last weekend's jaunt to the Rib Stand for a combo #1 (rib meat sandwich, sides, drink) with cheese and spicy sauce was heavenly.

Just a matter of taste, or has anyone else found DiNic's signature sandwich lacking?


Edited by DCP (log)

David aka "DCP"

Amateur protein denaturer, Maillard reaction experimenter, & gourmand-at-large

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get a nice pork sandwich from dinics.  with greens and sharp provolone.

Tried one a month or so ago, and it was just OK - the flavors didn't work well together for me. The taste was overwhelmingly that of sharp provolone, with bland pork and lots of liquid from the greens. I did like the sautéed spinach, but felt that it made the whole thing unmanageably soggy.

Last weekend's jaunt to the Rib Stand for a combo #1 (rib meat sandwich, sides, drink) with cheese and spicy sauce was heavenly.

Just a matter of taste, or has anyone else found DiNic's signature sandwich lacking?

It's not just you. I definitely prefer Tony Luke's roast pork -- I think the pork itself has better flavor and is moister, I like their roll better, and I prefer rabe to spinach on a sandwich. But DiNic's is a Philly classic, and 95% of the people I know seem to like it, so, y'know <shrug>

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Thanks y'all. We got the roast pork and pulled pork at Dinic's, both w/ provolone and greens and were seriously impressed! I found the roast pork incredibly flavorful and plenty moist. The pulled pork was just ok. My husband and I both envy you Philadelphians...


Food is a convenient way for ordinary people to experience extraordinary pleasure, to live it up a bit.

-- William Grimes

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i like the roast pork at dinics, and always have, obviously. i've eaten dozens of them. i think the spinach is great, and while everyone's distracted by broccoli rabe's existence, maybe we're all forgetting that only here can you even get garlicky sauteed spinach on a sandwich pretty much at all. at least i've never seen it in any other city i've been in. (edited to add: and that's a GOOD thing, because after all if spinach is on a sandwich it's gotta be good for you, right? it's spinach!)

and i've never had dry or flavorless pork there.

the one thing i wonder (and maybe since joe spoke up here the other day he can tell me if i'm imagining things or what) is that last summer sometime? maybe spring or fall, but either way last year, the bread seemed to change, and start to suck more than it used to. it used to be more of a hoagie roll, soft inside and crustier outside, and then somewhere along the way it seemed to change to more of a ... i don't know, the texture became more like the sandwich rolls a grocery store sells. softer. less of a difference between inside and outside.

but maybe i'm trippin. i could be wrong. i still eat them, although it's been a while recently for no reason that i can figure out. i'll have to remedy that this saturday.


Edited by mrbigjas (log)

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It's not just you. I definitely prefer Tony Luke's roast pork -- I think the pork itself has better flavor and is moister, I like their roll better, and I prefer rabe to spinach on a sandwich. But DiNic's is a Philly classic, and 95% of the people I know seem to like it, so, y'know <shrug>

Good call on Tony Luke's. I enjoyed one of their sandwiches yesterday. Shame about them losing their lease.


David aka "DCP"

Amateur protein denaturer, Maillard reaction experimenter, & gourmand-at-large

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We like OK Lee's prices a lot, but the produce can be hit-or-miss. The last few times we've been, I've eyed the deep-discount produce, clearly overripe past any normally salable point - and wondered: if it's in such bad shape, who's buying it? Even much of the non-discounted fruit seems picked-over, and can involve lots of cutting to yield usable flesh.

Having just acquired a small ice cream maker a month or so ago, it occurred to me that the overripe fruit might make good sorbet. Yesterday, that turned out to be a correct assessment. 8 squishy kiwis ($0.99) neatly slipped out of their skins once halved (no peeling, no hassle) making a fine verdant and refreshingly tart sorbet with the addition of 1/2 cup each of 1:2 simple syrup (half and half sugar/Splenda) and fruit juice - the dregs from the bottom of last week's fruit salad.

I'll be attempting the same with the $0.79 cantaloupe (smelled a little funky outside, but the inside is probably fine) this evening, having rested and re-frozen the ice cream maker's container.

Cheap treat to beat the heat, this sorbet is.


David aka "DCP"

Amateur protein denaturer, Maillard reaction experimenter, & gourmand-at-large

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It's not just you. I definitely prefer Tony Luke's roast pork -- I think the pork itself has better flavor and is moister, I like their roll better, and I prefer rabe to spinach on a sandwich. But DiNic's is a Philly classic, and 95% of the people I know seem to like it, so, y'know <shrug>

Good call on Tony Luke's. I enjoyed one of their sandwiches yesterday. Shame about them losing their lease.

I think you meant that Rick's Steaks is the stall that is not having it's lease renewed?

We had a DiNic's Sandwich this past Saturday and it could not have been any better. The sandwich (and us) were sopping from all of the pork juices. It was rather interesting and educational to find out that the spinach greens (picked out of part of the sandwich by my son) were as spicy as they were when eaten by themselves. I never noticed that before but then again have never dissected the sandwich but always ate it all at once.

Needless to say, if Tony Luke's winds up coming to the market and is permitted to sell roast pork, out of respect to DiNic's, I will not be supporting Tony Luke's.

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I think you meant that Rick's Steaks is the stall that is not having it's lease renewed?

Indeed. Such is the peril of taking other people at face value and not fact-checking. The visit to RTM included both a Rick's Steak and crepe from Profi's, and the former wasn't purchased by me.

Pardon the mix-up.


David aka "DCP"

Amateur protein denaturer, Maillard reaction experimenter, & gourmand-at-large

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Well, I suppose now would be a good time to chime in with this last string of comments. But oh, where to begin? What Diann said earlier is quite important here: that 95% of the people that eat a DiNic's sandwich are more than satisfied. As difficult as it is, and as much as it pains me to read negative comments, I've also come to the conclusion that in this business it is impossible to be everyone's number one. Pick any fine restaurant in the city and you will find a plethora of praise as well as disapproval. Our goal is to please as many people as possible, the reality being that some will prefer someplace else, and that's OK.

With this said, I believe this: between our pulled pork and roast pork, we have the best pork sandwich in the city. I've had the other's, and I don't think they compare, but they are good. But I assure you, it's quite alright if you disagree. I've heard loads of opinions over the years, and from those I'd be willing to wager that the majority of people that have eaten from both DiNic's and another pork place, prefer DiNic's. That's what we want. Not necessarily everyone, but most.

To mrbigjas, the bread story is a very long and complicated one. We're doing our best to have the best bread possible, it's just an extremely difficult task. The quality of bread fluctuates greatly within any bakery, especially when dealing with sandwich size rolls. We use more than one baker to try and balance this. If you, or anyone here prefers a specific type of roll, speak up!

If anyone wants their greens dry, speak up!

If anyone wants their sandwich wet or dry, speak up!

So help us out, we can't make a sandwich the way everyone likes it, so we make them somewhere in between. If you have any requests at all, PLEASE SPEAK UP!


Edited by jtnicolosi (log)

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I think you meant that Rick's Steaks is the stall that is not having it's lease renewed?

Indeed. Such is the peril of taking other people at face value and not fact-checking. The visit to RTM included both a Rick's Steak and crepe from Profi's, and the former wasn't purchased by me.

Pardon the mix-up.

Not a problem, it's how I go through life...

See, the steaks from Rick's are indeed pretty good. Not a cheesesteak fan all that much but I'd say Ricks's is the best I've tried thus far.

Stay tuned, as more drama awaits...

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If anyone wants their greens dry, speak up!

If anyone wants their sandwich wet or dry, speak up!

So help us out, we can't make a sandwich the way everyone likes it, so we make them somewhere in between.  If you have any requests at all, PLEASE SPEAK UP!

As a frequent customer, I can vouch that DiNic's will honor ANY requests--and they always do so with a smile. No bun, check. No meat, check. Sandwich to go for boyfriend's father, check (we'll give you the bread and meat separately so it doesn't get soggy.) Joe and his father value each of their customers and their individual needs, which is a dying trend in today's society.

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Well, I suppose now would be a good time to chime in with this last string of comments.  But oh, where to begin?  What Diann said earlier is quite important here:  that 95% of the people that eat a DiNic's sandwich are more than satisfied.  As difficult as it is, and as much as it pains me to read negative comments, I've also come to the conclusion that in this business it is impossible to be everyone's number one.  Pick any fine restaurant in the city and you will find a plethora of praise as well as disapproval.  Our goal is to please as many people as possible, the reality being that some will prefer someplace else, and that's OK.

With this said, I believe this: between our pulled pork and roast pork, we have the best pork sandwich in the city.  I've had the other's, and I don't think they compare, but they are good.  But I assure you, it's quite alright if you disagree.  I've heard loads of opinions over the years, and from those I'd be willing to wager that the majority of people that have eaten from both DiNic's and another pork place, prefer DiNic's.  That's what we want.  Not necessarily everyone, but most. 

To mrbigjas, the bread story is a very long and complicated one.  We're doing our best to have the best bread possible, it's just an extremely difficult task.  The quality of bread fluctuates greatly within any bakery, especially when dealing with sandwich size rolls.  We use more than one baker to try and balance this.  If you, or anyone here prefers a specific type of roll, speak up! 

If anyone wants their greens dry, speak up!

If anyone wants their sandwich wet or dry, speak up!

So help us out, we can't make a sandwich the way everyone likes it, so we make them somewhere in between.  If you have any requests at all, PLEASE SPEAK UP!

OK, I've got a complaint. There is never an empty stool at the counter on Saturday afternoons.

Other than that, DiNic's is my favorite pork sandwich. Then again I wouldn't kick a pork sandwich from Tony Luke's, John's or George's off my table.


Edited by Holly Moore (log)

Holly Moore

"I eat, therefore I am."

HollyEats.Com

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To mrbigjas, the bread story is a very long and complicated one.  We're doing our best to have the best bread possible, it's just an extremely difficult task.  The quality of bread fluctuates greatly within any bakery, especially when dealing with sandwich size rolls.  We use more than one baker to try and balance this.  If you, or anyone here prefers a specific type of roll, speak up! 

If anyone wants their greens dry, speak up!

If anyone wants their sandwich wet or dry, speak up!

So help us out, we can't make a sandwich the way everyone likes it, so we make them somewhere in between.  If you have any requests at all, PLEASE SPEAK UP!

thanks for this post.

don't get the wrong impression, it's still my favorite pork sandwich in town, and i've eaten them from a lot of places. i prefer a roll like... well, basically sarcones. with a good crust on them. and it seems they used to be that way and then they weren't.

anyway, don't worry, it's all good.

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