Philly w Dessert Zombie

Many moons ago, Dessert Zombie and I discussed going to Philly. In fact, we even “tried” once – back when I still had Blue Thunder – getting in my car and driving through the city, but due to a late start, excess traffic, and other snafus, it took something like 45 minutes just to cross town. So we decided to give up and stayed in the city, planning to attempt the trip another time down the line. We were determined to eat! and finally, one weekend in April, we made our way to the city of Brotherly Love.

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First stop:  one of my personal favorites, Paesano’s – for my first love, the Arista (on the left), and the namesake sandwich, the Paesano (on the right). The Arista wasn’t quite everything I remembered, though I’d had one as recently as a year ago… but still tasty – porchetta, broccoli rabe, long hot peppers all combining to make one pretty darn good sandwich. The Paesano, my first experience with beef at the sandwich shop, with brisket, horseradish mayo, roasted tomato, pepperoncino, sharp provolone and a fried egg, was a messy delight of a sandwich. Dessert Zombie had chosen well – I thoroughly enjoyed this sandwich, and would definitely order it again. Philly w TC 04.jpg Our next stop was Frangelli’s, where we intended to get some of their famous donuts. Unfortunately, as it was Easter weekend, the shop had dedicated its entire production to Easter-related pastries, and I failed to get my doughnut. Dessert Zombie, however, was not about to go empty handed, so he chose a cake that boasted a lot of almond flavor. I think there may have been marzipan in there – I took a small bite, but was saving myself for our next stop.

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Federal Donuts, which boasts both donuts and fried chicken. We went with the ranch flavor – which was OK. I didn’t think this fried chicken was anything to write home about, and didn’t understand the hype. We got there a bit late in the day I guess so the donut selection had been picked over, and nothing really stood out, so I sampled a plain one. Eh.

Seriously, what’s up with all the hype around this place?

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Then our final stop, Franklin Fountain for ice cream – see that line? I balked. I basically said HELL NO. Dessert Zombie looked at me, I looked at him, and I knew we had to wait. FINE. I got mint chocolate chip because I am boring. He got some huge ice cream and really enjoyed it. I liked mine just fine, but didn’t think it was worth the 40+ minute wait we endured.

Overall, a mediocre trip to Philly. Of course, looking at my pics and writing this, I see another trip to Philly is in order, sooner than later… for some food. Let’s get this show on the road!

Paesano's on Urbanspoon Frangelli's Bakery on Urbanspoon Federal Donuts - Pennsport on Urbanspoon Franklin Fountain on Urbanspoon


  1. says

    I like Federal Donuts for the unique flavors they put on their chicken. Also, they fried my chicken pretty well when I last went. I was lucky to get them right out of the fryer too.

  2. Dessert Zombie says

    I thought the sandwiches were average. Not enough “messy” egg in the Paesano.

    I liked the food at Federal Donuts. Perhaps because it was fried! The buttermilk ranch fried chicken was okay and I’m not a fan of ranch. The staff were very nice though (maybe the hype is the service and coziness of the place). As for the Appolonia spice donut I had, it was fresh and delicious. I’d go back for other flavors of chicken and donut though.

    Next time, BASSETTS instead. I don’t think Franklin is worth the wait either but we were near it after Mac’s Tavern and I was craving it. Yes, we went to Mac’s briefly and I had a quick beer. 😛

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