What’s up everyone? It’s been a while since I did the blog thing but I’m excited to say we’re going to focus in on ramping up content on a more consistent basis this year.
A while back I did a little write up about Marmont Steakhouse in Philly. One of my favorite places to have a steak dinner in the city. It’s a low key spot in the Old City neighborhood of Philadelphia. Delicious, high quality food without all the hubbub of those fancy schmancy places (it’s OK to leave your blazer at home, don’t worry). Besides the stellar food, the service is aces too. Not much more you can ask for in a neighborhood restaurant.
So check it out, watch me eat some food and say the word phenomenal three times in five minutes (I swear I know some other words too). Enjoy!
The Philly Taco is a concoction so foul that it can only belong to…well, Philly. A South Street legend that few have tried and even fewer have finished, Gratzfeed investigates the notorious creation firsthand. Will he live to tell about it? Click the video and find out. Warning, this is not for the faint of the heart.
I hate to admit it, but I’m pretty cocky when it comes to cheesesteaks. If there’s a great steak in the area, I like to think I’ve probably at least heard of it before. Well, I’m glad to have been humbled by the gentlemen of Delco’s Original. In my defense, the place is a little outside my normal radius (Chadds Ford, PA), but finding the best cheesesteaks can be an exercise of almost limitless boundaries and in such a competitive field, excuses are for the weak. The place was suggested by my dad, who was actually referred by a local who’s been in the area for a while. I was a little skeptical, but as we say here in Philly, “trust the process”.
Speaking of “trust the process”, the place was pretty Philly-ed out, which of course is a positive. Who wouldn’t want to eat a cheesesteak while looking at walls of Philadelphia sports regalia? Maybe losers, that’s who. The place itself sits inside a pretty unassuming shopping center. While you may be thinking rinky dink, Delco’s Original is far from it. Don’t get me wrong it’s nothing fancy, but there’s way divey-er joints out there. The place is well lit and clean. There are a few tables to sit at and they clearly do a great takeout business too. After living in Philadelphia for a while it was refreshing not being shoulder to shoulder waiting in line with some schlub breathing on me. Plenty of help behind the counter and the guys there were all friendly and knew what they were doing.
Now, it’s one thing to pay homage to Philly sports and have good service, but it’s all for nought if the food doesn’t stack up. Well, lets put it this way… my mouth is watering just thinking about these bad boys. Tried the beef cheesesteak and the chicken too. Both out of this world. Plenty of meat which was hot, fresh and delicious. Everyone knows good bread makes a sandwich and the rolls here were out of this world as they had a nice crispy texture to them. We also had fries which were amazing as well. I loved this place. If you really want to experience all the great cheesesteaks in the area then you probably want to add this to your list and make a trip. Lastly, like I said the Philly vibes are strong with this one, so make sure you grab a tastykake on your way out too.
I love barbecue. Pulled pork. Brisket. Ribs. Chicken. My mouth waters just typing that. Might be the most underrated type of food there is. Despite my affection for slaughtered animals doused in barbecue sauce, I never made it to Percy Street Barbecue in Philly which is kind of surprising considering it’s right down the street from where I live. This past Saturday my buddy and I finally tried it out, here’s the scoop.
What I ordered: Pulled Pork Sandwich, split an order of wings, whiskey ginger.
Verdict: As always, my anxiety ridden self was in a state of panic when it came time to make a decision on what to order. I love brisket and I love pulled pork. Luckily the waiter started off by saying that he personally recommends the pulled pork. When I asked him if it was better than the brisket he subtly gave the pulled pork another vote of confidence. It was settled. Pulled pork sandwich. Fries. Whiskey ginger. Ohh yeah. While I waited for that my friend and I split an order of wings. The wings were awesome. I really enjoyed them. Dry rub, meaty, flavorful. They had almost a maple kind of taste to them or something. Whatever it was, I was down. Before the main food comes out they storm the table with a barrage of different sauces. This is not a bad thing. At all. They were rattling off the sauces the same way one can rattle off girls Derek Jeter slept with. I was overwhelmed and didn’t retain anything, obviously. Strong pulled pork sandwich. Very strong. A generous portion of meat, some onion, plenty of fries. Some of the sauces were hits and some I could do without but having that variety was awesome. Since I didn’t really know which was which i just blindly poured different ones onto the pork. Aggressive, but necessary. Here’s the thing, I would gladly come back to Percy street for their pulled pork sandwich and wings. However, their prices are a little steep. Steep enough that it would prevent me from coming on a normal basis. $14 for the sandwich. The wings were $9 ($4.50 each). A whiskey ginger is $10. That’s $28.50 before tax and tip. Ended up costing $35 for a sandwich, drink and three wings. I don’t mind paying a little bit more for a quality sandwich (which I consider their pulled pork to be) but $14 a sandwich isn’t something I would want to do all the time. Sure I can probably hold off on the wings and maybe do without the alcohol, but still a $14 sandwich with a soda or something is still going to end up being close to $20 bucks or more. Delicious sandwich, might not be a $14 sandwich. At the end of the day though if you’re really craving barbecue you might not mind spending the extra moolah. Pulled pork isn’t something I eat on a weekly basis so hey spending a few extra bucks might not be a deal breaker.
On a side note, the service was phenomenal. Everyone was friendly from the hostess to the wait staff. Our waiter was energetic, informative and handled everything well. The food also came out fast, despite it being pretty crowded. The service and experience went a long way in making me feel more at ease about paying a premium. If it took forever to bring out a $14 sandwich on South Street I probably would have lost it. Overall good, quality barbecue. Great service, nice atmosphere, definitely worth trying but probably not special enough to give it a repeat visit with so many places to try in Philly unless you really want barbecue and/or are really close.
The constitution may very well be the most important document in America to this day. Gratzfeed’s top 5 cheesesteak article, a close second. Like the constitution, sometimes amendments are needed as times evolve and things change. They’re an important way to update and preserve the integrity of important works. As a result, I am making the very first amendment to my most popular article.
I first had John’s Roast Pork some years ago. While I think I liked it, I never thought it was quite the sandwich some had made it out to be. As the years went by, time and time again I kept hearing John’s Roast Pork’ cheesesteaks being referred to as some of the best Philly had to offer. I decided I had to give it another go. Another go turned into another go. Another go into another and so on and so fourth. Get it?
There’s a reason John’s Roast Pork has the strong reputation it does, their cheesesteaks are out of this world. The meat is flavorful. The rolls are terrific. They give you plenty of cheese and onions. But it doesn’t stop there, something about their cheesesteaks must be addressed and right this very instant. The sandwiches are HUGE. Seriously, it’s borderline offensive how much meat they pile on a single sandwich. Disturbing. Last time I went I was pretty full from just one half, but curiosity got the best of me and for some sick reason I was compelled to experience the feeling of eating a whole one again. It’s pretty much a suicide mission. It’s like having a football in your stomach. Or quintuplets. The thing is, I can eat a lot. If anything I usually complain about portions being too small. Not at John’s. You get your moneys worth and then some. You’ll be full for pretty much a whole day.
If you never been to John’s and want to get some intel, let me paint a picture. It’s your standard Philly dive joint. Small inside where a line wraps around. You either order at one stop at the counter or the next depending on if you’re getting something from the grill like a cheesesteak or the next if you’re getting a roast pork or beef. They have an enclosed seating area with benches and condiments and then some additional benches outside with no enclosure. Simple. Divey. Delicious.
On a side note, while in this case I’m focusing on the cheesesteaks, their roast pork and beef is dynamite too. Like the cheesesteaks, the sandwiches are humongous. Definitely worth a try if you’re into those.
Now you may be wondering, who’s getting bumped from the top 5? Honestly, I think I’d go with John’s Roast Pork over Tony Luke’s. Tony Luke’s is still great though and is undoubtedly a South Philly classic. So, I’m going to do the logical thing and make John’s Roast Pork 5A. and Tony Luke’s 5B. Does that make any sense? Probably not. But I want people to know Tony Luke’s is still a top cheesesteak and I want them to know about John’s Roast Pork too. There you have it, the first amendment to Gratzfeed’s top 5 cheesesteaks has been made. John’s Roast Pork, welcome to the cheesesteak elite.
I love Taco Bell’s promotions. They’ll take anything and put a Mexican spin on it. Mexican pizza. Doritos locos tacos. Now it’s “naked chicken chips” or as any regular American would say, “chicken nuggets”. They come in counts of 6 and 12, $2.39 and $4.49 respectively. They also come with a side of nacho cheese to dip into (which I guess justifies them being called chips). I’m not going to make this long. They’re chicken nuggets. I liked them. They’re actually better than Wendy’s and Burger King’s (shouldn’t be too hard). I feel like they’re a little bigger than a regular chicken nugget but still $2 for 6 of them felt steep. You can get a loaded griller or a little burrito for less than two bucks which I think is the better deal. They’re processed chicken nuggets, nothing you haven’t had before but I did enjoy them. The cheese is an interesting side and your enjoyment of that will ultimately come down to if you like Taco Bell’s nacho cheese or not. I think the chips are a good compliment if you’re getting something else. For example a crunch wrap supreme might not be enough but a side of naked chicken chips would obviously be more filling and you get some variety. Ironically, they don’t have a spicy option. I think that’s something they’ll eventually roll out and those might be even better.
I think the better option is this new thingamajig they got called the “chickstar”. It’s essentially a little folded wrap (think crunch wrap without the hard shell) with breaded chicken inside but it comes with lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and avocado ranch sauce. I think at $3.39 this is a better play than just the standard nuggets, er, naked chicken chips. When I say there’s breaded chicken inside, they literally take like four of the chicken chips and put them in. We’re not reinventing the wheel here. The extra stuff inside makes it a little more filling but it’s still kind of a snack sized thing. I really love their avocado ranch sauce and thought this chickstar was pretty bangin’ overall. Well, that’s a wrap. Taco Bell rocks. Chicken nuggets are tight. Get the chickstar. Peace.
Look at all that goodness stuffed into that wrap baby.
I get really defensive when it comes to chicken sandwiches. As you probably know, I am a vocal and devout supporter of a certain Atlanta based fast food chicken chain and am undoubtedly biased towards their food. I must be honest I was a little hurt when I initially saw Shake Shack was adding a chicken sandwich to their menu. I viewed it almost as a direct attack at my beloved favorite. But as a chicken sandwich enthusiast I had to at least try it, had to see what the competition was bringing to the table. After hitting the NFL Draft in Philly my friends and I were looking for a place to eat and when someone mentioned Shake Shack there was more fanfare than the actual draft itself. Here was a golden opportunity to finally try the chick’n shack sandwich and once and for all satisfy my curiosity.
Simply put it was really good. Very crispy breast of chicken. I really enjoyed all the toppings (lettuce, pickles, buttermilk herb mayo). The herb mayo was zesty and a welcome addition as it provided just the right amount of flavor without detracting from the chicken itself. One minor complaint was the chicken breast wasn’t evenly proportioned, one bite might have been all breading while the next was all meat. Inconsistent. I think this sandwich can coexist with others because it’s just different than the competition. Different vibe. At $6.49, it’s more expensive than a normal fast food chicken sandwich. Add $2.50 for a fountain soda and another $2.99 for fries and you’re looking at a $12 meal compared to something maybe a little smaller at $7.50. This is the perfect chicken sandwich option if you have a hankering on a Sunday. Look, there’s no denying Shake Shack has pretty damn good food. This sandwich, while maybe a little expensive, doesn’t really feel like a ripoff although I can probably eat two if I forgo fries. If you’re at Shake Shack, this is certainly a viable option and I would recommend it if you’re a fan of chicken sandwiches. Not the biggest, not too small, but just about fair and the taste surpassed my expectations. This is a welcome addition to the chicken sandwich game and a legitimate option for the fast casual realm.