Thursday, July 27, 2006

Sweet Lucy's

It's just been too hot to cook. We have AC in only parts of the house, and the kitchen is not one of them. I really don't think I've used the oven in weeks. So, what I'm trying to say, is I've been eating out a lot, mainly in air conditioned locations. This post remembers a visit to Sweet Lucy's BBQ in North Philadelphia. You can check out the menu here too.

Andy and Kim came along on the barbecue adventure. But I have to admit, we were going to skip Sweet Lucy's and try The Smoked Joint down on Locust until we heard through chowhound that it was closed. Odd too, because I'd heard good things about it, so I assumed business was good. Anyway, we ended up at Sweet Lucy's instead. Behind Andy and Kim we can see the decor of the place, it's sort of cowboy meets old warehouse in North Philly. The chairs and booths are made from logs instead of finished wood and paper towel rolls are present on the table.

You order and pay at a window near the entrance, and the counter person asks your for your name. We grabbed a booth at the back, and pretty soon someone was shouting "Kim" and "Elizabeth" and our food was ready. This is Kim's dinner. She had a Super Q Combo with Brisket, Chicken, Baked Beans and Mac & Cheese.

Andy had the 1/2 chicken and 1/3 rack of ribs combination with mac & cheese and baked beans. Within a few minutes of sitting down, the ribs were gone. We were all very excited about getting so much wonderful food. All of our meals came with coleslaw and cornbread in addition to two sides!

For my dinner, I had the brisket and the BBq pulled chicken, as well as the mac & cheese, but I don't like baked beans, so I tried the mashed potatoes and gravy instead. The chicken and brisket were really good, but Sweet Lucy's bbq sauce is very sweet. Reviewing the take out and catering menu I brought home with me, I see they have a spicy sauce, so maybe next time I'll ask for that. On this visit however, Kim found some vinegary North Carolina sauce near the drink machine, and a little drizzle of that cut the sweetness of the sauce for me. The mac and cheese was decent, nothing compares to Shannon's mac and cheese for me. The mashed potatoes were fine, but on tbe cold side. Next time I think I'll have the greens or the asian broccoli salad.

I will go to Sweet Lucy's again. It's a BYO, so bring beer. It's also pretty affordable. My entire box of food was about 13 bucks.

Sweet Lucy's
7500 State Rd, Philadelphia 19136
Between Rhawn St & Cottman Ave
Exit 26 off I-95

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Dimitri's - Queen Village

Andy got a new job! While we're sad he's leaving the 884 collective, this is an awesome lateral move for him, plus he gets to live with Kim in the sorority house. So, when we learned of the good news Friday afternoon, we decided to celebrate a little.

wine cheers
Originally uploaded by halene.

It was hot, but we picked up a couple bottle of wine at the spirits store and grabbed a cab down to Old City to eat at Dimitri's. Here we are giving a little well deserved cheers to Andy. You can see his big grin in the top left corner!

soft shells
Originally uploaded by halene.

Dimitri's has a nice sized fixed menu, but their specials seem to be the way to go. Andy ordered the entree special, soft shell crab, breaded and fried, served with rice and escarole. Yum! Kim didn't enjoy the bite she had, but it was probably more of a mental barrier than anything having to do with the taste, because I thought they were awesome.

tomato moz salad
Originally uploaded by halene.

We also tried the salad special, roma tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and basil leaves with a little oil and vinegar. In the background you can also see the "best hummus in the city" as well as the char-grilled pita and French bread which starts every meal at Dimitri's for me.

grilled octopus
Originally uploaded by halene.

The last time I was at Dimitri's was for my birthday and Alison ordered the same thing, grilled octopus with lemon and butter. Again, the texture is something you have to get used to, it's not tender and not easy to chew, but that's pretty characteristic of octopus.

seafood fettucini
Originally uploaded by halene.

I tried something new, the seafood fettucini, mussels, clams and good sized shrimp with fettucini in a garlic, butter and red pepper broth. It was so hot when it came to the table, I couldn't eat it for a few minutes, but it was a nice flavorful dish, it was also huge, so I mostly ended up eating all the good stuff and leaving the pasta in the bowl.

Later we got fabulously drunk at Krupa's and ended up closing down the bar with a bunch of hipsters singing Bohemian Rhapsody. Congratulations on the new job Andy!

Dimitri's is by far the best seafood BYOB in Philly. The wait can be long, but they hostess will come fetch you if you tell her you'll wait over in the bar at the New Wave Cafe. The prices are high, but worth it in my opinion, especially when you can bring your own wine and enjoy the open kitchen.

795 S 3rd St
Philadelphia, PA 19147

Cash only!

Sunday, July 16, 2006


From the northern liberties website:
Bussola Trattoria & Lounge
In the old El Viejo San Juan space at the corner of 3rd. and Girard. Two full Bars, club lounge, gelateria, cigar lounge available and roof top deck.

Sometimes my roommate and I like to go on "dates". We dress up a little, one of us picks a nice place for dinner, we go out, have a few cocktails and some good eats. It's a pretty swell thing to do with your friends. Two weeks ago I took Alison to Bussola Trattoria because I'd read some interesting things about it on the message board. One of the first things we did was order drinks. By recommendation, I had a gellato martini.

Gellato martini
Originally uploaded by halene.

I believe it was peach flavored vodka, a scoop of vanilla gellato and some other stuff. At first sip, it was way too strong for me, but as I let the gellato melt, it's sweetness toned down the vodka and created a very nice drink that was refreshing on the warm evening. Alison had a planter's punch drink with real cardamom floating in it!

uhlie being funny
Originally uploaded by halene.

To start we shared an appetizer of endive leaves stuffed with ricotta, parmesean and spring onions. Ha ha, bunny ears, I guess that's inevitable when I insist on taking pictures of my food.

penne with vodka sauce and shrimp
Originally uploaded by halene.

Alison had the Penne with shrimp, crab and vodka sauce. Well, that's the what the menu said it was going to be, and it looks delicious, doesn't it? Tasted pretty good too, except there wasn't a single flake, or shred of crab in the whole thing. That would have been okay if the menu hadn't emphasized the inclusion of crab claws when they had no intention of serving them.

Papardelle with tomato sauce
Originally uploaded by halene.

My entree was both true to the description in the menu and tasty, if not a little on the cold side. Papardelle with mushrooms and red sauce. Papardelle are like thin but wide fettucini, actually, they really resemble ribbons, and it was the perfect style of pasta to serve with the thick sauce.

Uhlie and e
Originally uploaded by halene.

We walked down Germantown Ave to our favorite, Bodine Street, and A Full Plate. Here we shared a bottle of chianti and some blueberry perogi's with ice cream. Share is a little ridiculous, as I ate three out of four perogi's, but I think Uhlie had a little more wine, so it works out.

Brunch @ A Full Plate Cafe

Back in action. Sorry for the long delay. My desktop had a melt down and now serves as the largest paper weight in Pennsylvania. I had to scramble around to find my camera software to upload on the new laptop, and all sorts of things I didn't really hae time for before this weekend. But now, my obsession with food can continue. I have a tons of eating to catch up on, so watch out!

Originally uploaded by halene.

Last weekend, Uhlie and I went to A Full Plate for brunch. The past few times I went for brunch it was really crowded, but this time was a little quieter, which I liked. It also wasn't so unbearably hot. I had the cinnamon babka french toast. I'd never had babka before, and usually prefer challah french toast as that is the way my mother taught me to make it. However, I'll concede that babka makes equally good french toast. It's more like a cake consistency with a swirl of cinnamon inside. Soaked in an egg and cream mixture with cinnamon and vanilla, then grilled, this french toast kicked ass!

Originally uploaded by halene.

Uhlie went with the "Omelet of the day" which happened to be smoked Gouda and broccoli. Her omelet came with a side of hash brown potatoes and both our meals came with fruit salad.

I also had some home fries on the side and asked them to be extra cripsy. They obliged, and the sweet potato fries were out of this world excellent all cripsy and cooked with leeks and salt and pepper.

A Full Plate Cafe in Philadelphia

Saturday, July 08, 2006


The holiday weekend, a visit from an old friend, and now very nasty computer problems have kept me from blogging. I do have access to other computers, including the lappy I'm currently typing on, but I like to do all my photo uploading and such from my desktop. So, until the ole clunker gets fixed...foodaphilia is static.